It was after a year of recovery following a stroke in early 2015 that Jon decided to seek some help to improve his health and weight.
“I had high blood pressure, and the stroke resulted in the loss of use of my left arm,” recounts Jon. “I received physiotherapy to get the use of my arm back and I knew I had to do something to sort my health out. The death of my business partner in 2013 who suffered a heart attack in his sleep while overseas was also a big motivation to me. Following his death, I didn’t do any exercise. During my recovery I was working part time, and lost a little bit of weight. But I remember thinking, I have to give this a go.”
Jon commenced a LifeShape 12 program in February of 2016 after seeing an ad on Facebook and since then, hasn’t looked back.
“I am focused when something’s put in front of me. Once I get into something, I don’t stop,” says Jon. “I quickly realised I had found a good thing. My weight went straight down, all my body measurements – everything. Every week there was an improvement. The whole program and my Dietitian were great. I enjoyed meeting with her every week and showing improvement.”
Jon was quick to find value and accountability in the weekly support offered by the program.
“Being accountable, by having a consultation each week was part of my success,” explains Jon. “The repetitiveness of the program was a good incentive and kept me on the rails. At first I thought there would be strenuous exercise involved, however I found I could just go walking. Once I got into it, it was good. Walking is so easy, and I did heaps of it.”
Thanks to the results on his LifeShape program, Jon has also been able to rediscover his passion for skydiving.
“About two thirds of the way through, I stopped into the skydiving centre by chance and an old colleague asked why I didn’t get back into it now that I was fit enough to jump,” remembers Jon. “It had been 25 years since my last jump. Over the years I had let it slip away with the busyness of work and a family. One week later I was back jumping from 14,000 feet. After landing I remember thinking why the heck did I ever give this up! Now I’m back doing it every weekend.”
Jon has since completed over 200 jumps, has his instructor ratings back, and has travelled to training camps in both New Zealand and California.
“It’s been really good to get back into it,” says Jon. “It ensures I maintain my fitness and weight loss. I fully intend to keep jumping – I’ve made major changes in everything I do. LifeShape has taught me how to understand food. I used to go out for lunches regularly, now I bring my own and rarely eat processed food. When I go out, I am mindful with my choices, but this doesn’t restrict my life or eating.”
After an inspiring 41.4kg loss while on his program^, and further losses while on a Support program, Jon has found many more unexpected benefits of his improved health and weight.
“LifeShape has taught me to be jealous of my ‘me time’. I get upset if I can’t go out for my afternoon walk,” explains Jon. “Now I understand you have to give yourself your own time. I actually block it out in my diary. I can also identify stress better than in what I refer to as the ‘bad ol’ days’. Previously, I would have gone home and had a few wines after a stressful day. While I still like my wine, I am simply more aware of it now. I am aware when my stress levels go up and I can recognise it.”
“Being able to wear nicer clothes has also been a big unexpected change. Clients also come in to the office and say ‘WOW!’ when they see me. I’ve been able to go on fun runs with my daughter. That’s something I wouldn’t have even contemplated before.”
Seeing his doctor for a regular check-up also no longer strikes Jon with any fear.
“My GP is so happy with the change, he had previously been telling me I should do something about my weight. But I guess I thought I was bulletproof,” says Jon. “Now when I see him he says things like geez you’re looking good! I’m not as afraid of going to see him now. He’s impressed with my results. We get to talk about things like the Rugby instead.”
Jon’s quick to admit the hardest thing about the whole process, was simply taking the first step.
“Once you get going you will build your own incentives,” explains Jon. “I didn’t find it hard to do, because I had such strong incentives. I was highly motivated because of my business partner’s death. But what I would say is, don’t be afraid. At the beginning I thought, how can I ever do this? To me, 40kg was an embarrassing amount to lose. But it does work.”
“It’s hard to imagine in the beginning, but stick to it. Bring in other things, goals, aims, and smaller targets to incentivise you. It was my own initiative that got me started, and it’s been a good adventure. I never imagined I would go back to sky diving, and now I don’t know why I ever stopped.”
Need Help Finding A Healthy Balance for You?
If you need a little extra help finding a healthy balance for you, consider seeking the help of an Accredited Practising Dietitian for tailored advice. A healthier, happier you starts with just one phone call to 1800 567 348. Alternatively you can register your interest online.
^Your results may vary. To find out what you can achieve on your LifeShape Program book a no obligation initial assessment with one of our Dietitian.