Monday, 6 July 2009

Day 2. Well, Sort Of...

And so, with one small Twitter, the "secret" is out. I'm now into my second day of exercising "officially" and so far it's going well.

While joy is not really a word you'd associate with the Tough Guy - joy is generally not defined as "dunking yourself in icy water in the depths of January and running eight miles through wintery mud and, probably, donkey crap" - there is a pleasing roundness to this project. And no, I don't mean somewhere between my hips and my chest. Let me explain...

While I will argue til the cows come home about the relative speed of my metabolism - and more on that in a sec - the simple truth is I clearly eat too much for my level of activity. The frustration is when I look back on my 20-something self when I ate considerably more than I do now, drank my bodyweight weekly in corporate entertaining pints and Australian Chardonnays (oh, the City in the 80s...) and, aside from the odd guilt-ridden gym visit on a Saturday, took no exercise of note. I now eat quite carefully, I walk miles a week, my alcohol consumption is a fraction of what it was... and yet, somehow, at some point I gained about five stone and added six inches to my waistline. Scary huh?

Of course, some will argue - probably quite successfully - that my lifestyle is to blame. Those 80's and 90's excesses have caught up with me, compounded by a profession that involves sitting on my arse and either typing or playing video games or watching films or consuming edibles and drinkables several times a week. Accordingly, the blame lies somewhere in my genes but, at least partly, at the landlord's / restaurateur's door.

What better solution could there be than having a landlord / restaurateur to assist with the pound-sheddage and the fitness campaign? Step forward Mr Giles Webster who, if he bought a lycra suit and a cape, could qualify as my favourite superhero. By night, he's LandlordMan, co-owner of The Coach & Horses and purveyor of Timothy Taylor's and good burgers. By day though, he's a Harley Street exercise physiologist. He's the man with the knowledge and the equipment to reduce this excess poundage without - so the plan goes - reducing the lifestyle dramatically. Well, it's in his best interests, frankly: those Scotch Eggs aren't going to eat themselves.

So, as the Landlord giveth, the landlord taketh away. And Giles will no doubt be chipping in with some myth-busting and general tips through the course of this "diary". The "official" regime kicks in from the end of July which gives Giles a formal six months to turn this Fat Bloke into the sort of nutter who can complete an eight mile yomp and assault course in the depths of a Midlands winter. In the meantime, the regime has begun at a more gentle pace. Come the end of the month though, we'll bring you the - eek - tale of the tape and - double eek - photos of the subject. Probably topless and inordinately hairy. You have been warned.

1 comment:

  1. I did TG in January 2008 and looking back I spent far too much time running to build stamina. Personally the best exercise to do would be lots of upper body stuff (pull ups etc.) as there is lots of climbing involved and lots of short, quick runs up steep hills.

    I found the hardest part of the course was the bit called 'The slalom' which you do after the run. Effectively you're just running up a hill, then running down it, then running up it again, about 15 times.

    The water is fun but towards the end you are just cold and want to not go under it again.

    I'd recommend wearing running leggings, a long sleeved running top (like nike dri fit, or something even more specialist), a swimming hat, cross country shoes (they have really thick traction on the bottom so you don't fall over) and gloves. The idea behind the clothing is you want something that covers you fully so you don't get too many scrapes but will dry as quickly as possible.

    Overall it's not as tough as people make it to be - I'm not superfit, just average. If you really don't like the cold then you might struggle but if you're ok with it as long as you prepare a bit you'll be fine.

    If you've got any more q's