When I was 5 years old, my dad left home and my mother raised me and two younger brothers by herself. I matured earlier than most kids my age, and I’m grateful for it because that (as well as my mother) taught me three key things: responsibility, accountability and, most importantly, WORK ETHIC!
During my teen years, I was, let’s say, “athletically challenged,” and got picked on a little. Although I refused to show it, that hurt me… a lot. By the end of my teens, I thought “enough is enough!” I started training with a friend, but we had no idea what we were doing. I wanted a quick fix and went straight for the Paleo/Atkins diets and general upper-body weightlifting. I shook the weight off, but couldn’t keep it off. There was so much rollercoaster dieting, deciding between losing body fat and building muscle.
By 22, I was 207 pounds with 21 to 22 percent body fat, and I hated it. For the following year, I cleaned up my diet and training, but just couldn’t get past my sticking points and kept derailing my progress with late-night binge eating and drinking on weekends.
Then I decided it was time to make a change. I relocated from Dublin, Ireland, to Calgary, Alberta, with some close friends. And that’s when it all changed for me. After my 23rd birthday, I kicked some of my party lifestyle and decided to dedicate my body to fitness and make a change for the better. That summer is when I stumbled upon Shortcut to Shred and Pre JYM. What a change, what an experience! I gave it my all and couldn’t believe my results.
But then some of my personal demons came back to haunt me and I let myself go. Binge eating, drinking and poor excuses limited my potential and I had no one to blame but myself. After that year, I took responsibility, cleaned up my lifestyle, and said “no” to all the temptations and haters.
Using Dieting 101 guidelines and doing Shortcut to Shred twice, I dropped 30 pounds and was ecstatic! I moved on to Super-Man before the HIIT 100 Challenge. Sadly, I got injured in the challenge and had to drop out and decided to do Micro Muscle, but I was comfort eating and put on 14 pounds over the Christmas holiday and my 25th birthday.
Enough was enough. I had to take responsibility for poor decisions and accept that everything was my own fault. So I used my drive and work ethic to shred that “holiday weight” using Shortcut to Shred again, followed by Tabata Weight Blast. I got down to 177 pounds and 14 percent body fat in eight weeks! I’m now sitting at 176 pounds and about 12 percent body fat.
For me, this journey started as a way to prove to everyone who doubted me that I could be fit and athletic. And then I wanted to prove it to myself, and it became my passion. I have the backing of an amazing group of people, extending to family, friends and my girlfriend. By pushing myself, I inspired some of them to pursue fitness goals of their own and in turn, they inspire me to keep pushing, keep going and challenge myself. That has pushed me to set a goal to inspire others along their fitness journeys.
My advice to anyone who wants to achieve their goals? Be selfish. Be patient. Ignore the haters. This is about you and only you. Until you have a life partner and kids, always look out for Number One and Number One is YOU.