JGFitness Interview with Andrew
In my line of work it’s important to always be searching and experimenting with ways of communicating healthy eating and exercise to a client so that they can understand and make positive changes as quickly and as easily as possible.
I started training Andrew a while back and we had great sessions together. Then due to an injury he had with his knee we had to postpone our sessions for a few months. I stayed in close contact with Andrew and kept up do date with his condition.
We then planned a time to start again and was surprised to hear how fast he had dropped weight and was so glad to hear that he was eating healthy and making amazing progress with his health.I was eager to see him in person on our first session back and see these changes for myself.
I was shocked to see Andrew who was 20+ kgs lighter! He told me all about his eating and all that he chang andrew
ed with his diet to get healthier.
I was thrilled to finally hear all the information that I say to my clients back at me.
I then asked Andrew if I could interview him and get him to share his knowledge and simple tips with everyone so the community can benefit band relate better to the importance of eating healthy food that not only keeps you active and fit but also extends your years of living.
JG: Andrew, please tell us what was your condition? What obstacles were you faced with with your health over the last 6 months?
Andrew: John, I hit 120kgs and said to myself “I’d better do something about this”, I had previously reached 130kgs and did not want to go back to that weight and the associated challenges. I am an insulin dependent diabetic and continued to increase weight through eating the wrong types of food and not appreciating the seriousness of diabetes and how important diet and exercise is for a diabetic.
JG: How did you plan to change your life style and eating habits? What kicked it off for you to start eating right?
Andrew: I decided to consult with a health specialist in HK and start working out in my local gym (end of October 2010). The health professional advised me of the Low Glycemic Index (Low GI) diet and I met up with you in my local gym and explained my goals. Having a young family and being a diabetic, I decided my health and wellness was my own responsibility and to use all the tools I could get my hands on to improve my condition. Therefore the only things that control my health and fitness are what I eat and how I exercise! The purchase of 2 x Dr. Jennie Brand-Miller/Kaye Foster-Powell books led me to understand my condition better and how to meet the Low GI desired diet as a diabetic.
JG: Andrew I remember you telling me about your change in food choices, how you substituted certain foods for others, tell us what changes you made?
Andrew: Below is what worked for me and I believe it as I have seen the results. Therefore keeping as close as possible to a Low GI diet is the key to eating healthy and within the parameters to suit a insulin dependent diabetic. Quite simple actually;
Stop eating deep fried food and poor quality carbohydrates like potatoes, white rice and white breads and start eating food types that contain high fibre, e.g. whole-wheat or Sour Dough mix breads, brown, wild or Doongara rice, durum wheat pasta and bulgar wheat. These carbohydrates break down slowly during digestion and release glucose more gradually into the bloodstream and have a low GI.
Also eat at least 5 vegetables and 3 fruits everyday and regulate the types and quantities of meats you eat – naturally fish and chicken is preferred but quantities of beef or veal are also acceptable. With the variety I have mentioned you can experiment with all cooking methods, spices and have fun doing it with you wife and kids.
It is easy to snack on things like cookies, crisps, sweets and chocolates – I suggest a handful of assorted natural nuts or dried fruit is a good substitute e.g. walnuts, brazil nuts, almonds and raisins etc.
Alcohol in moderation is another obvious change in diet – choose when to drink alcohol and the correct quantities.
JG: Making these food changes, was it hard? Was it not only a challenge to switch from one product to another but also to purchase the right food conveniently?
Andrew: The food changes were easy for me, once I set my mind to the task – reality check is to spend time with those loved ones around you and this was sufficient incentive for me to change my lifestyle and work towards my goals. I am still striving for my goals as I have another 8kgs to lose. So exercise and diet are a partnership to this success. Exercise the correct advice is paramount to the success. Your JGF team has been really supportive with my goals and I appreciate that – I enjoy 2 sessions a week with John Graham and Josh Phillips – these guys push me through the barrier and then I have 3 or 4 sessions on my own, exercising those areas I learnt from John and also at a more relaxed pace but still maintaining my goal of losing another 8kgs. Most of the foods I can buy in Shenzhen but when I go to HK I often pick up extra suitable food e.g. different types of wheat, cereal, spices and veal.
JG: How is this positive change in eating effecting your kids, are they eating the same healthy food as you?
Andrew: What’s great is the family are into this step change as well and we are all trying to eat similar foods, naturally kids don’t always like the flavours or foods but generally they eat what we are preparing except for a few exceptions. The kids fruit and vegetable consumption has increased and they are enjoying the same rice or pastas that I eat too.
JG: What would you recommend as three important steps to take to start eating well and living a more active healthy lifestyle?
Firstly don’t wait until something goes wrong!! Be pro-active and read and investigate what is good for you, books, internet and talking with others. I would recommend visits to the gym for exercise and treat exercise as a routine activity, just like you manage your schedule for work or through your Microsoft Outlook Calendar add “The Gym” to it and visit it as part of your life’s schedule and enjoy it and mix up what you do in the gym.
Secondly look at your family and think what it would be like “not to be around them” – sure was my incentive to being successful so far!
Thirdly – make an effort to change or incorporate the different foods into your diet. We often hear from health professionals what is good and bad, read about it and experiment for yourself – you’ll be amazed at how much of the advice is actually a fact!
Personally I feel better, wear clothes that fit and can buy in China, can tie my shoe laces without puffing and continuing to challenge myself to improve and get fitter works for me and I get the importance of healthy eating, wellness and fitness now!
Wow Andrew thank you so much for sharing your experience with everyone! Truly motivating for me and inspiring for my as a fitness trainer.
There is so much we can all learn from here and i sincerely hope our readers take your advice and start putting into practice these simple tips for eating and exercising for a better more healthier life.
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