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Tim Viljoen embraced healthy living and dropped 47kg

Where do I start when it comes to my weight loss journey? Well let’s go right back to the beginning before it was even a problem.

In high school I guess you could say youth was on my side. That, and being extremely active at school. I played every sport I possibly could, my diet wasn’t the best (hello tuckshop) but I had “mom’s food” to come home to, so that kept me relatively in check.

My weight started rising once I matriculated, excessive partying, which also brought with it extremely bad eating habits, but again I was never obese just a couple kilos more than I should be. My plummet into obesity happened the day I moved out. I never bothered to even learn how to cook, or understand what foods were good for me and which were bad. Once I moved out, in my mind I had my freedom to do as I pleased which meant drinking practically every second night and take aways every single day. As you can imagine within a year I ballooned to 110kg.

I remember telling myself, as my weight was climbing, “This isn’t too bad, I can lose this, it’s still manageable” The truth is, it was a lifestyle change as well as a mind shift that I needed. 

Once I got to that 110kg mark I decided to try lose some weight . I managed to drop 5kg but my heart wasn’t truly in it and I landed up falling back into bad eating habits and unhealthy life choices which pushed me right over the 130kg mark. That’s where I stayed for a good 7 years of my life.

Looking back now those were seven years I would never want to relive again. I was extremely unhappy, and as most people who suffer from obesity I was an emotional eater. Among my friends I was the “fat friend” and I hated that. I felt like I had no respect from the people in my life, and honestly I had none for myself to begin with. If that wasn’t bad enough the health problems were unbearable. For someone who grew up on sports the fact that I couldn’t run 2 meters without getting out of breath bugged me. I suffered from heart burn  and constant breathing problems. I was always tired and spent a lot of time sleeping.

I wish I could say I had some profound moment that caused me to change my life around but it really didn’t happen that way. It was just your typical new year’s resolution which I decided to take seriously. The new years of 11/12. I decided that would be the last new year’s I would spend fat. That January I started reading up on everything from BMI to which foods are good and which are bad. As with most people’s weight loss journeys at the start I made a lot of bad decisions following one diet after the next but I stuck to it and the weight started dropping.

My first 3 big changes I made was changing the kind of alcohol I was drinking from beer and brandy and coke to whiskey and water and wine. I cut down on take aways to only weekends and dedicated myself to at least 30 minutes of exercise a day.

With these changes I started seeing results but something was changing inside of me I started enjoying the feeling of being healthy and seeing the weight drop and wanted to push myself harder. I knew I had to make a complete lifestyle change not just a couple of changes on the side. I cut out sugar completely from my diet as well as saturated fats. I started watching my carb intake with a magnifying glass keeping mostly to complex carbs (oats ,rye bread, sweet potato, brown rice, whole grain pasta) and staying clear of potatoes, white rice (except my sushi treat once a month) white bread, white pasta etc and then a rule I apply for myself, I don’t have any carbs after 2pm. I try eat as clean as possible with a decent amount of protein and healthy fats (avos, nuts, nut butter, olive oil etc) and drink at least 4 litres of water a day. My meals are planned for the week, and I eat  every 3 – 4 hours. I allow myself 1 cheat meal a week and really look forward to it. I gym 5 times a week with a mix of weights and cardio. And the biggest change has been cutting down my drinking to practically nonexistent.

I now weigh 83kg. But even with all the weight loss my biggest changes aren’t physical. I always had a victim mentality and believed the world owed me something, along my journey I have realized I am responsible for anything I want in life and it requires work on my part. My confidence has gone through the roof, which has also helped me make better life choices such as the kind of friends I keep in my life. This is vital because you want people to support you and uplift you. That’s what I love about the Sleekgeek Community. People from different walks of life all with the same goals in mind of being healthy.

I really enjoy my life now and live with a sense of purpose which I didn’t have 3 years ago.

It also helps to have like-minded people to support you on your journey

As for my goals they are constantly evolving as each new year brings with it new challenges and look forward to seeing where I will be next year this time.

Don’t give up.

Tim.

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SUBMIT YOUR STORY AND WIN R500 Wellness Warehouse Voucher

Tim wins a R500 voucher courtesy of our sponsor for the “YOU CAN live life well” series Wellness Warehouse to be spent on their online store with free delivery nationally.

I believe very strongly that ordinary every day people like you and I derive great inspiration from the achievements of people who seem similar to us. If they can do it.. damn.. so can I! Right?

So through this program we will continue to tell people’s personal stories.

I want to great an archive of hundreds of stories of people who have changed their lives while others believe they cannot.

Submit your story to dom@sleekgeek.co.za with the Subject line “You can live life well”

We require:

  • Your story in your own words covering at least (How you got to a point of change, how you made the change, tips and advise for others)
  • A selection of before and after photos
  • As many words as you need to tell your story

In advance, we regret that not all stories may be published. Your story is as important as anyone’s story but we can only publish one a week and the editor will make decision on this.

If your story is published you will receive a R500 voucher to the Wellness Warehouse online store with free national delivery.

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