Eating Disorder Awareness Week 2020 – Mike Ryan

Gaining confidence and motivation in the gym

After struggling to strap himself into his aeroplane seat on a flight, Mike Ryan felt like he had hit rock bottom and realised that he needed to do something about. Mike, 37, had been training at the gym every day using the free weights zone in Manchester but still managed to gain excess weight. The weight gain wasn’t caused by a lack of activity but overeating and unhealthy eating habits which led him to pile on the pounds.

Naturally, this caused Mike to lose his motivation and confidence in himself but by taking his gym workouts to the next level, he was able to push himself out of his comfort zone and improve his general health and fitness.

Work on health and wellbeing

Mike’s self esteem hit rock bottom during this challenging time of his life. He was having trouble sleeping, was experiencing real discomfort and struggling with breathing. He wanted to work on improving this and feeling better about himself – not just for himself but for his children too.

Mike said:  “My children were my biggest motivation. I wanted to be able to play football with them and more importantly, be around long enough to see them grow up.”

Despite weight training for 1 hour a day, Mike was the first to admit that he wasn’t really pushing himself out of his comfort zone. Whilst he was in the gym, he would spend time on his phone scrolling through social media and not really take his training seriously.  However, the biggest issue of all of was Mike’s diet. Because Mike was spending an hour lifting weights in the free weights gym zone in Manchester, he’d treat himself to a takeaway afterwards. Sometimes even having 4-5 takeaways a week and sometimes even twice a day. By adjusting his diet and taking his nutrition a lot more seriously, he began to notice positive changes to his life.  

Transforming fitness at Xercise4Less Manchester

Seen as Mike was finding himself stuck in a bit of a rut, he wanted to mix things up. He eventually signed up for one of our Transformation Camps and because he was getting bored of his typical training, he thought it might help him to make positive changes to his body. 

“The camps looked fun and I wasn’t really seeing the changes I was hoping for by training on my own. I gave my 8 week Transformation Camp not only hard work when in the gym but I was really watching what I was eating. It wasn’t long until I started to see changes in my body and was feeling better and sleeping better.”

Mike was also able to push himself harder in the training sessions compared to when he started as his fitness level and stamina was improving. When he started to see the numbers of the tape measure going down, this was the biggest motivation of all and kept him focused on his end fitness goal. Mike has only positive things to say about Transformation Camps at Xercise4Less following his experience.

“I know gyms can be intimidating places but remember, nobody is watching at you. We’re all there for the same reason, same goal – to be better than we were yesterday. I’d always encourage regular members to help others too. If you see someone new and unsure of what to do – be nice, help them, even if it’s just a smile or a nod of approval, it goes a long way. Remember, we were all newbies once.”

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