HOME: MIRANDA, NSW
JOB: WINE SALESMAN
HEIGHT: 188 CENTIMETRES
THE WEIGHT GAIN
Keighran’s job as a wine salesman at Sydney Airport was hurting this waistline. Already a big bloke, he scoffed deli meats and fine cheeses, washing them down with his pick of readily accessible junk food. It was okay to drink heavily, he reasoned, in order to further his wine knowledge. At the same time he dropped out of team sports, preferring to watch them, schooner firmly in hand, at the pub.
“I was slowly but surely getting larger and clothes were beginning to get tighter,” he recalls. “I was ignoring the problem and refusing to accept what was staring back at me in the mirror.” Why? Because with 4XL shirts and a size 46 waistline, his reflection was scary.
Twelve months ago, Keighran’s ankles swelled up on the plane after a wine trip to Perth. The diagnosis was gout and his GP wasn’t impressed. “He said I was a ‘walking stroke with ridiculously high blood pressure’”, says Keighran. The straight-shooting doctor then bet him $100,000 that if he didn’t change his lifestyle, he wouldn’t make it to 40 – adding that he “looked pregnant”, for good measure.
But the doctor’s stinging assessment wasn’t quite the wake-up call it should have been – that turned out to be a promotional balloon for the charity Miracle Babies that Keighran’s mum picked up at a conference. Keighran himself had been a miracle baby, born three months premature with a collapsed lung. Intrigued, he joined the organisation’s Facebook group and began reading about babies born in situations similar to his own.
“The heartache that some of these families went through after losing a child made me fully appreciate life,” he says. “I felt ashamed of what I had let myself become.”
THE WEIGHT LOSS
Keighran began by cutting his daily kilojoule intake with the help of an iPhone app. He used another app, Couch to 10k, to start a jogging regimen. The change has been remarkable: in five months he lost an amazing 47kg and recently completed the Blackmore’s half-marathon in under one hour 50 minutes, raising $2000 for the Miracle Babies Foundation in the process.
His GP, already startled at Keighran’s transformation, was staggered when he clocked his formerly pudgy patient’s resting heart rate at 49bpm.
Just as impressive: in five months, the former boozer has had a total of three drinks. “These days when I look out on the airport tarmac on a nice day, I don’t think ‘Oh I wish I was at the pub,” he says. “I think, ‘I wish I could go for a run.”
Write down what you eat. “The few minutes it takes to actually see what you’re eating is both motivating and rewarding.” And do a life inventory. “Write a list of things in your life that you are proud of and things that you wish you could change. Then, instead of sitting around making excuses, get out and change the things that you want to change.”
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