Hi, I’m Darren, and I’m very pleased to meet you! This is my story about how I lost weight, regained my health and discovered my long-lost confidence.
Let me tell you a story. Many years ago, ickle Darren was born on a lovely summers day and he grew up to be, well, fat and lacking self confidence. But this isn’t the end, oh no! Ickle fat Darren grew up into adult fat Darren and stays this way until the age of 41, just like those wrestling matches or movies where the guy is weak and downtrodden until the last moment when they find that burst of energy. Well that was me. During that weak stage I developed Type 2 Diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. On the outside I was a happy guy, always laughing, but that hid a sad side, tired of being tired, tired of being overweight and tired of lacking the self confidence I always wanted. Little did I know, that was about to change.
In September 2012 I came across a little known movie called ‘Hungry For Change’, I saw references to it, liked the idea and managed to get a copy. This was the turning point in my life! I realised how bad my diet had become and how I could change things around for the better, so I set about making changes. Now I’m the kind of person who when he starts something, I really put energy and effort into it. I became British archery champion twice, I studied and completely changed my 17 year career as an electronics engineer to work in IT, when I put my mind to something, I can usually achieve my goal.
So, I changed my lifestyle! Initially I made huge changes, literally overnight I removed virtual all processed and refined foods from my diet, removed the added refined sugars and stopped my 5-6 times a week bucket of Starbucks habit. Eliminating dairy was easy because I’d virtually done that anyway due to how milk caused spikes in my blood sugar. I replaced it all with fresh fruit, vegetables, legumes, smoothies and juices. Over the next 2 months I also slowly reduced my meat intake until at the end of October 2012 I went meat-free and adopted a totally plant-based diet because that’s what really worked for me.
Fast forward to March the next year and off I go to have my annual diabetic check with my doctor. They take the arm full of blood, ok it may not be an arm full but if felt like it and looked like it, and got it sent off to be tested. Results came back and I get called in to see my doctor and he can’t believe the change. My fasting blood sugar level was towards the low end of normal which was fabulous! I then admit to him that I’d stopped taking ALL of my medication (for diabetes, cholesterol and blood pressure) 3 months ago at the start of the new year so he wants to know just how I did it considering the previous checkup, my fasting sugars were above normal even with medication! So, the answer? Clean eating and exercise. This is what I did in those 6 months from when I saw the Hungry For Change movie to the diabetic checkup. Oh yes, the other 2 results of this lifestyle change? A whopping 95lbs weight loss and a huge increase in self confidence! I just can’t tell you how much better I felt, not only in my body but mentally too.
It was so wonderful to go shopping for clothes and actually enjoy it, not having to worry about whether they will have my size, not worrying about having to dig to the back of the rail to find the clothes that would fit me. I didn’t have to remember to take my medication each morning…. and lunchtime…. and evening. This is what I truly what I wanted and I now had it.
My huge lifestyle change has lead me to make a transition in my career to become a Holistic Health Coach. Studying with the Institute of Integrative Nutrition based in New York, my education has opened my world to the chances of working with people to become healthy and happy and feeling as great as I do now. IIN are the largest nutrition school in the world and the program isn’t just amazing with the knowledge you learn, it’s life changing. Here’s my interview with Jenni of happysexyhealthy.net