With a Lit­tle Help from My Friends

Thi­nus Blig­naut re­cruited the best team to help him lose 44kg and over­haul his health

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THE GAIN I grew up be­ing over­weight: I reached 3 dig­its on the scale be­fore I was old enough for high school. Reg­u­lar doc­tor ap­point­ments were a big part of my life due to all the obe­si­tyre­lated health prob­lems – I had al­most all of the big ones: choles­terol, di­a­betes, blood pres­sure and more. My all-time low? Reach­ing an all-time high of 147kg in var­sity.

THE CHANGE Be­ing over­weight for most of my life set me up with all kinds of so­cial pres­sure and chal­lenges which didn’t end at high school, they made their way to var­sity too. I ended up be­ing the fat guy with no voice at the back of the lec­ture hop­ing he would dis­ap­pear in the masses of peo­ple I per­ceived to have flaw­less bod­ies. See­ing 147kg on the scale shook me all the way to my nonex­is­tent core. I knew I was speed­ing down the 150s lane. I just couldn’t be that guy, so I made the best and most im­por­tant de­ci­sion of my life.

THE STRAT­EGY I knew that chang­ing a life­time of bad habits would be my big­gest chal­lenge. With the rec­om­men­da­tions of close friends I con­sulted a nu­tri­tion­ist. I strongly be­lieved in the use of pro­fes­sion­als who are trained and knowledgeable. The nu­tri­tion­ist taught me good eat­ing habits and choos­ing di­ets to be healthy and nu­tri­tious. I lost my first 10kg with healthy eat­ing. See­ing the scale drop to un­der 140 brought tears to my eyes. That was the mo­ment I knew I could do this. I felt the need to step it up a notch and found an ex­cep­tional trainer to take the last steps of the jour­ney with me. My per­sonal trainer gave me one glance and just said “let’s be­gin”. I found my­self on the gym floor in the first 15 min think­ing “I did this to my­self and this is what is needed to fix this”. Soon af­ter I had lots of friends and ran­dom in­di­vid­u­als in the gym sup­port­ing my trans­for­ma­tion with moral sup­port and words of en­cour­age­ment. I lost the rest of my weight on a high in­ten­sity train­ing regime, and I was ba­si­cally liv­ing in the gym.

THE RE­WARD Life couldn’t be bet­ter. I’m a hap­pier, health­ier and more re­spected in­di­vid­ual. For the first time its fun do­ing ac­tiv­i­ties in­volv­ing phys­i­cal ex­er­cise. The so­cial chal­lenges are some­thing of the past and were re­placed by pos­i­tive self­im­age and con­fi­dence. I’m hooked and my goals changed from los­ing weight go gain­ing mus­cle and re­shap­ing my body.

THE RE­SULT I lost 50kg. My waist size went down from a size 44 to 34. For the first time it’s easy to live my life. Obe­sity re­lated health prob­lems are no longer present in my life. The best re­sult I could ever ask for is peo­ple ap­proach­ing me say­ing that my jour­ney gave them the mo­ti­va­tion to take on a chal­lenge in their life. For me this was just as sat­is­fy­ing as los­ing 50kg for I wouldn’t have been able to do this and mo­ti­vate other peo­ple and achieve this loss with­out my train­ers, nu­tri­tion­ist, fam­ily and friends. A strong sup­port base is im­por­tant when tak­ing on a life-chang­ing task.

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