Let Operation Lard*rse Commence | a guest post by Shilts


So, I’m back again.  This time, it’s personal.  Not that it wasn’t last time, but today, I am writing to you having made a rather horrifying discovery.

But before we get to that, firstly I would like to thank you all for your very kind feedback from my previous guest post.  Your comments and responses to my Sleep Apnoea post were really touching and I read every single one.  Now, bearing in mind that the last time I penned anything on these pages, it resulted in a national TV programme, one can only assume that following on from this one, a movie and Oscar are surely in the offing…my phone is on, calling all directors.

Confession time

Anyway, I digress.  I am here today to make a confession.  My confession is, that over the past couple of years, I have turned into a bit of a fat git.  Now this has come of something as a shock to me, because throughout my childhood, teens and well into my twenties, I used to resemble something like a rake.  I could eat, and eat, and eat, and I would pretty much stay stick thin, which must have been quite irritating.

I used to play a variety of sports through my twenties; football twice a week, cricket, squash, swimming and I had a gym membership for a few years.  I was also (and still am) a qualified football coach, and I used to coach for three professional football clubs (Walsall, Notts County and Wolverhampton Wanderers, if you were interested).  One by one, I began to give it all up, due to various reasons; time, work pressures, family life, cost and also the worry of trying-not-to-get-my-legs-broken.  It all meant that eventually, my own form of exercise was reaching over to pick up the TV remote.

So, on came the weight.  It was very gradual at first, and although I began to notice it a bit a few years ago, it wasn’t anything I was overly worried about.  Small things started to bother me though, such as all of a sudden, my top button wouldn’t do up on my shirt collars, and my trousers no longer buttoned up.  So I would have to change my wardrobe a bit.  Now for someone who religiously wore a suit and tie to work for 13 years, I didn’t really like the fact that my collar looked scruffy.  I would pull my tie up as high as I could to try and mask the top button being open, but that never lasted longer than the commute to work.

So, life went on.  My yearning for team sports never went away, but given my severe lack of fitness, I decided to embark upon a much more sedate sporting pastime – I took up pub league darts.  As you can probably imagine, pub darts doesn’t really lend itself to temple-like bodies.  Beer and darts go together like a horse and carriage, Terry and June, ham and eggs, and any other famous combination that you might think of.  I am rather partial to a pint of mild or bitter and having played for the team for something approaching 4 years, a lot of beer has been consumed.

It was about November time that I first really started to notice that I was a little bit more rotund that I thought.  All of a sudden, those 36in trousers were a tight squeeze, but surely I wasn’t a 38?  Medium clothes were long gone, and everything was now large.  My chins had doubled in number, and so had my belly.  “Are you pregnant mate?” to much hilarity and amusement, but the reality was that I was ballooning at a rate of knots.

Of course the other thing to throw into the mixer was a change of job.  I have recently taken a slight career alteration, and have gone from being a classroom teacher to a university lecturer, and this is a lot more desk based than my old job.  I have swapped the classroom for an office, and I am not doing half as much walking now.  I have been combating this by resuming squash, and so I have been playing once a week for just over a year.  It is not easy though.

The moment

So, here comes the moment.  It was Thursday last week, when I decided to step onto the scales.  In your head, you have a vague idea in mind of what you weigh, and to me, I was about 14 stone.

You can probably imagine my horror when the scales read 15 stone, 8.5lb.

15 stone?  No, must be a mistake.  I stepped off and on three or four times, and the reading was the same.

I think it was this realisation that spurred me to make a positive change.  My wife is such an inspiration to others that I felt I was letting the side down by letting myself go.

I don’t want to be a 38 inch waist.  I don’t want to be an 18inch collar.  I don’t want to be a Large.

I know it’s not going to be easy, but we all have to start somewhere.  So tonight, Tuesday 23rd February, I have weighed in, and I am going to shift this mass.

I only really know how to deal with difficult subjects through humour, so I have affectionately named this quest as Operation Lard*rse.  I have used an asterisk as this is a family blog, but you get the idea.

How am I going to do it?  Not a bloody clue.  My meals are pretty good already through what we cook, so gone is the snacking, the alcohol and the sugary drinks, and in comes sweetener, syns and hopefully a brand new shiny gym membership through work.

I know I can do this, but to make sure I do, I have decided to share my photos, as of today.  I am not proud of them, but in order to motivate myself, I need a starting point.

The beginning

Tuesday 23rd February 2016
Weight – 15 st 7lb
Waist – 43 inches

The evidence

Greg 23.2.16

So never mind ‘this girl can’, how about ‘this gent will’.  Operation Lard*rse starts today, and hopefully in a month’s time I will start to see the difference.

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  • Reply Lucy Bishop 24/02/2016 at 12:46 pm

    Operation Lard*rse! Love it. This is such a positive post and so resonates with me. You can so do this & itll be great for you & Em to tackle it together, just like Liam & I. It makes such a difference! I really look forward to following your progress darling xxx

    • Reply Emma 24/02/2016 at 7:56 pm

      Thanks so much Luce, if only me and Greg could do as well as you and Liam we would be delighted xx

  • Reply Claire yarnall 24/02/2016 at 1:08 pm

    Brilliant blog Greg, good luck you can do this

    • Reply Emma 24/02/2016 at 7:54 pm

      Thanks Claire xx

  • Reply Lucy Hudson 24/02/2016 at 6:32 pm

    Good Luck Greg, you can do this (& yes it was annoying in college when you ate loads and stayed skinny and the rest of us didn’t!! ;) ). Look forward to following your journey. x

    • Reply Emma 24/02/2016 at 7:54 pm

      Ha ha thanks for the comment Lucy, I knew time would catch up with him. He used to be able to scoff so much chocolate and not put on an ounce I think it’s come back to haunt him now! Thanks for your support

  • Reply Katie 24/02/2016 at 7:09 pm

    You’ve a great mindset, and a great thinspiration in Emma, wishing you good luck in your journey

    • Reply Emma 24/02/2016 at 7:53 pm

      Thanks so much Katie, Greg appreciates your support

  • Reply Lauren (@laurenbigeejit) 24/02/2016 at 8:08 pm

    Good on you Greg, and good luck! x

  • Reply Donna 24/02/2016 at 9:09 pm

    I am so proud of your Hubby for this post. People have to see something for themselves before they do anything about it and for Shilts to realise something has to change is a huge step – and the photos are a great place to start! I wouldn’t have said your husband was that big – he holds it well! The isn’t about this girl can – or this gent will. It really is about you doing it together. Weight loss is so much easier when you’re in it together xx

  • Reply Emma T 24/02/2016 at 9:46 pm

    Good luck with it, and I enjoyed the post. Going public certainly gives you nowhere to hide. And it’ll be all the easier doing it along with Emma.

    I’m currently on a diet and just over halfway to goal – unfortunately my husband works outside in a physical job and eats for fuel, so can eat pretty much anything and not gain weight. While my metabolism (and yearning for delicious food) went downhill when I reached the age of 28, at 46, he’s still pretty much the same weight as he was at 25!

  • Reply Robyn 26/02/2016 at 6:48 am

    Loved reading this, wonderfully well-written. All the best and looking forward to reading the updates :)

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