Adam Ratcliffe, from Kent, lost an impressive five stone in just 10 months. The slimmer attributed his success to focusing on fitness rather than weight loss during that time, and the valuable help of the MAN v FAT Football programme.
Adam explained: “I have dieted before but they were often fads. I would focus on the weight loss, rather than fitness. This ultimately meant I lost weight but I was still incredibly unfit.”
He decided to put his fitness first “for a change” and any weight loss achieved as part of that “would be a bonus,” and that “mentality has seemed to work quite well,” he explained.
Adam joined the MAN v FAT Football programme and from the very first session “I knew our team was full of a great bunch of guys, we have really connected and helped each other through”, and the best part is that they all had “the same goals”.
MAN v FAT Football is a fitness and weight loss programme aimed at men with a BMI of higher than 27.5 where players take part in over 170 UK clubs.
The unique philosophy behind the programme sees the players being weighed before each match, and after the game, weight loss and match scores contribute to teams’ league positions.
Adam told Express.co.uk that he decided to lose weight after months of being “really unhappy with how unhealthy I was”.
He explained: “I felt, no matter what I did, my weight would always go up and up. It felt like I couldn’t ‘stop the rot’. Large tops became XL and that soon became XXL. I had resigned myself to always being overweight. In my mind, as long as I was under 20 stone, that felt ‘OK’.”
One day, Adam went over the 20-stone mark. “I didn’t have scales at home. I weighed myself out of curiosity on a BMI machine at a pharmacy and it came back at over 20 stone. I was very embarrassed and knew I had to make a big change,” he admitted.
How did Adam lose weight?
Adam signed up to Margate Man v Fat Football when he hit the 20-stone mark. “I fully committed to the challenge and knew this was my best chance of losing weight and keeping it off.”
He explained that although playing football “really helped with improving my fitness, my diet also played a huge part in losing weight”.
Adam attributed his transformation mainly to exercise, but he also made some dietary changes during that time. “I made some major changes in my diet and started tracking what I was eating and the calories consumed, being extra mindful of sugars and saturated fats.
“Previously, meal times and food would be sporadic, snacking was frequent and dinners were often an ‘event meal’ followed by very frequent, very unhealthy desserts,” Adam said.
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Adam’s diet plan to lose weight:
A typical day for Adam now is yoghurt and fruit for breakfast, a healthy lunch and “big portion, low calorie” dinners.
- Greek yoghurt and mixed fruit (bananas, raspberries, strawberries, grapes, blueberries).
“I often swap and change the fruit to keep it interesting,” Adam suggested.
- Fruit salad
- Lean meat sandwich with “thins” used rather than typical bread
- Snacking cheese
- Chicken bites
- Salad (cucumber, tomato, beetroot, lettuce)
“Think ‘packed lunch’ and you’ve got the overall gist,” Adam said.
“Dinners vary a lot but I always aim for healthy, big portion, low-calorie options. This often involves fish and vegetables. As a marker, I try to make dinners under 500kcal,” he explained.
Adam also keeps well hydrated and has a food diary, which along with the lower-calorie, large portion meals, “were the main success behind my weight loss”.
In total, Adam lost seven stone. “I lost five stone in four months and the other two stone in the six months after that, also reaching a healthy BMI on the way.” He added: “I don’t think a weight loss journey ever truly ends, you just regularly redefine and adjust your goals.”
Adam told Express.co.uk that after his weight loss transformation, he feels “amazing for the improved fitness and weight loss”. He said: “I undertake so many more activities now that I wouldn’t have even dreamed of. My life has changed so much in the last year.
“I play regular football, have become coach of my Man v Fat league and have taken up running; having just started getting involved in park runs. My youngest is only four, so being able to run around and keep up with her is absolutely priceless.”
Adam was nominated in the annual MAN v FAT Football Awards which take place at The National Football Museum in Manchester. He is being recognised in the Community Hero category, which highlights individuals who embody the values they want to see in the MAN v FAT community, someone who is compassionate, supportive and engaging to as much of the wider MAN v FAT community as possible.
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