Episode Highlights

00:00:48 Background of the Guest
00:05:26 Don’t be too hard on yourself
00:06:43 Amount of macros you should eat
00:14:30 Find time to do it
00:16:01 Consequences of getting fit and healthy
00:20:29 How Connaire lost 17 kgs



Welcome to the Fitter Healthier Dad Podcast, where you can learn how to improve your diet, lose fat and get fitter in a sustainable and fun way without spending hours in the gym. Here Is your host, Darren Kirby.

Darren: Welcome back to the podcast, guys. This is the number one podcast for men in their 40s who want to improve their health through nutrition and fitness. This is Episode 100, which is a huge milestone for us here at Fitter Healthier Dad. And I would like to thank all of the team for their hard work. In today’s episode, We are going to be talking with Connaire ONeil, who went from 106 kilos down to 89 kilos in 12 weeks using the TT40 method coaching program. Hi, how are you?

Connaire: Very good Darren! How are you?

Darren: Yeah, very well. Thanks very much. And I’m very happy to have you on the podcast today because I was just thinking before we start to record, actually, and I was thinking back about all the clients that I’ve coached over the years. And you must have been one of the best clients to coach just simply because you did exactly what the program says and exactly what I asked you to do and you stuck to it to the tee. And obviously, we’ll talk about how the results came with it. But before we kind of dive into that, it’d be great for people to know and, you know, where you started from, what caused you to want to make a change in terms of your health and fitness, and how you came across us?

Connaire: I want to be asked to do this, and I’m really, really, really pleased. I thank you for the background and maybe a gesture. And I’ve always felt it was all about food and diet. And I came to a decision on New Year’s Eve last year that I was going to make a big, big difference. I was going to really be pushing to get fit and healthy but didn’t really know where to go with it. So I’ve done a little bit of swimming world and stuff like that, which wouldn’t work. It just wasn’t for me. But I wouldn’t say my diet was very ridiculous. And once I got my health check, I found that I had high blood pressure right after I’m done with the car and got fit and healthy. So I started running a bit. But then again, to the point, I wasn’t losing weight, so I stumbled across Fitter Healthier Dad Instagram is what I’m just going to reply to the other, as I, I mean, I think it was like I can’t remember who it was now and therefore. Yeah, I’m just going to go for it and find it a bit more. And then I came across your path.

Darren: Yeah. Yeah. No, it’s yeah it’s pretty easy. It’s like when, when people first come across, you know, the stuff on Instagram and you know, adverts. I mean the thing with what’s happened over the last year or so, there are so many people online, so many people telling you you can lose weight, do this, that and the other. And, you know, a lot of people are skeptical about it. So what we see when you reply to the ad and we add a little bit of exchanging direct messages, was there any kind of doubt? It’s like, who is this guy, you know, advertising on Instagram?

Connaire: It wasn’t the news that asked me if I’m right in the face. The feedback was well and obviously some from the reviews, right? No, no, I’m just a trusting person. I think I, I think if I did have, it would be better. The more I’ve been a safe route.

Darren: Yeah. Yeah. So if we pick up on that, because there was within the first week after we agreed to work together, you had a little bit of an issue where you wasn’t sure, like when we had our first kind of kick-off call you were gung ho, you were all in and you were going to go hard, smash it hard, and then you kind of had a little bit of a, I don’t know, the realization or whatever.

Connaire: I think, again, I as you say, that’s how you smash it hard. That’s, that’s, that’s my problem. I, I, I went up to a bit over the top. I struggled with the exercise to start with. I think that’s because I was. And most of us doing the program, what you say, I was lifting weights and I didn’t understand the nutrition part of it enough to be able to sustain the amount of calories I needed and did during dinner. So I started to have a big wobble about five days ago. And I said, there is for me, I can’t do it and I don’t want to do it. But I feel comfortable. And I know it was almost that I was 100 percent ready to fight the Taliban. And you and you will let me.

Darren: Well, it’s funny. It’s one of those things where you kind of when you sent me that message and I thought, you know what, let’s just jump on a call and just find out what’s going on then. And like you said, you know, we quickly discovered on the call that you had gone at it too hard. And I think this is a common thing and it’s definitely a male thing, insomuch as we decided we want to make that change and we just go all in. But then we very quickly realized that, you know, that’s not sustainable. And so we think we’re just not up to it. Whereas, you know, if you like, back it off 20 percent and then just stay consistent with it as you did. You find you get the results. But one of the things I want to dig into is the diet side of it because that’s like with a TT40 method. That is the biggest focus that we have is diet because that is for me, the biggest area where most PTs in gyms just don’t look at me. And I know from personal experience that was the biggest kind of change for me. So, you know, with you being a chef as well, and I’ve spoken to many chefs, a lot of people say, well, why not say I eat healthily? What was kind of one of the biggest realizations for you once we done the food diary,

Connaire: As you say, that we love again, I always just thought, well, no, I really did. It wasn’t until I started to break that and I was religious. I must say. I absolutely counted every calorie to a point or so to the point where my father was just taking the mic at my table. I think what I found is once I got the hang of it, the first week was quite possibly understanding the amount you can eat. And that was what shocked me because I, I think I started off at 2000 calories and I couldn’t eat and I was physically fit. After the first week, I was exercising five day days a week, I think as the conversations we had and I said, I can’t eat or if you will get because you are in the right foods, you are your you’re in the metro, so you’re not the hungry, you’re eating at the right times. So for me it was about the amount you could eat and also nothing was over your balance. I mean, if you want a little bit of chocolate, you could have a beer. Obviously, I didn’t tell a soul too deep into or already really, really point to push on. But nothing was really off balance as long as you were wearing your macros. And that’s something I’ve never, ever worked with before. It’s always been calories, actually. And then being told that you can eat fat, which is one thing for me. Oh yeah. I can’t lose weight. And my macros were if you help me on 30, 40 or 50 protein yet 40 fat and 20 carb. Yeah. I just didn’t expect to be able to be that much of it. But no, I mean for me it was just the amount of surgery was incredible.

Darren: Yeah. And I think that’s one of the fundamental elements of it because instinctively the way that we kind of society has evolved, it’s like, well, if you want to lose weight, you’ve got a calorie deficit. And that is true to a point. And, you know, obviously, calories are just a high-level measure. But I think the biggest thing that people don’t understand is macronutrients, proteins, fats, and carbs. And obviously, that’s you know, that’s the kind of thing that we talk about. But, you know, for you or for me as a coach, coaching someone like you, the biggest single factor in your success was the fact that you did get this and understand it. And when you do that and you were like you say, you kind of consistent with it, you kept on track with it and, you know, the weight started to come off. But I want to kind of go into when we kind of got to like we I think it was either week six or was it about a week 8, somewhere around the middle there where we hit a plateau, didn’t we? And. You actually gained weight because up until that point, you were losing on average about a kilo a week, wasn’t it?

Connaire: Yeah, yeah.

Darren: And then we had a bit of a wobble, didn’t we, in the middle?

Connaire: Yes, I think it’s week 9. And I put on a kilo, yeah, and we’re both scratching our heads. We went crazy for my fitness pounds and I thought of my HIIT programs, the way you still walk in the Springstein. And I hate everything and for some reason on a dog and it was destroyed. Yeah. Yeah.

Darren: But that’s the thing though. And I do say this to a lot of the guys I work with. It tends to be about  week 4 two week 6 where what happens essentially is metabolism’s adapting. And then, you know, the body’s adapted to the machinations and the white doesn’t start to come off as much as it was in the beginning. And, you know, that’s kind of a double-edged sword because you immediately think that, well, it is not working, but actually it’s the body adapted. And we just left it the way we left it and carried on slowly returning.

Connaire: Yeah. Because you were very reluctant as well to try to change it because the first eight weeks it worked perfectly. So, you know, carry on the same. But next week. Damn, damn, damn, what very labor, I think I ended up losing a kilo and a half to follow one story. So it’s all Tusi that all of us keep closed the following week. But things didn’t change. I hate to say so, Macro and do some exercise.

Darren: Yeah. And but then when we look at the side of it, because, like when we first started to work together, you were obviously on furlough. But then when you went back to work, you know, you’ve got a really hectic job. And for people listening, I think one day, … Twenty-six thousand steps, I’m going to do ten thousand steps in a day. So, you know, that just kind of shows how much activity you’ve got during the working day. One thing I want to kind of cover really is around the side of it, because, you know, you have weights at home, you have a little bit of a gym set up, but then we kind of mix it up between weights. And I think you talk a little bit about how you found that in terms of fitting in with your daily work in the family and everything else.

Connaire: Yeah, I mean, as you said at the start of the year and the reporter and all the while it wasn’t working is very, very, very easy. And one of the gyms in the garage, which in turn took down. But I just went back to work. 12, 13 days are everywhere. Yeah. To the station. I walked back from the demonstrations with Springsteen, which is the perp’s business starts dodgems, was the team at work. And then I would come home and do drums and weights. And that sounds like, oh, great. If you want it to work, if you want to work, you’ve got going to differ. As I said to you in the past, you can give it upon yourself and the structure, if they’re going to try and do what it does work, there’s absolutely no way it doesn’t work. It’s just you go, you’ve got to follow it. And if you really want to do it, you’ve got to get all you’ve got. You’ve just got to find a way around it. So it might be my first time walking to the station. That’s almost four for. Day, yeah, and take me half an hour longer, but I get it.

Darren: Yes, yeah, absolutely. And what would you say in terms of, like, people, people that listen to this, that perhaps, you know, they feel like this is too much? You know, they’ve already got busy lives. They’ve already got challenges with career, family. What would you say to people listening to you think why? It’s just like Connaire’s fantasy. I could never do that.

Connaire: I wouldn’t want to think it was last, but he absolutely can. I mean, the robust. And on the drive, you can do it during lunch, but the key thing about your program is that it’s not hours in the gym. It’s not it’s not. You can space this time and you can find the time that anyone can find the time to do it. The key is if you want to talk to you or do you want to be successful at it. Yeah. So. I stay on top of it, I’m a chef, I work five days a week, probably 70 hours wait if I can. Yeah, but I want to do it. And if you do for the program, I’m not just because I’m proof of it. It does work. And nutrition for me is absolutely fundamental. And I’m a chef, which is a little bit easier for me to understand. Yeah. And I’ve got more and more into really, really great and different recipes and stats and get my protein from my first album I’ve been doing and stuff like that. But if you follow the nutrition and just don’t, don’t, don’t be afraid to eat those, those kinds of reasons for the delay to stay at work.

Darren: Yeah. Yeah, absolutely. That’s a great point. So in terms of other benefits you’ve got out of the state, because I talk a lot about people getting the unintended consequences of getting fit and healthy things like, you know, their stress levels go down, their energy goes up. What kind of things did you experience?

Connaire: My. The energy level is absolutely through the roof all over time. I sleep better, so, so much better than I ever have. My concentration was better. My stress levels have gone up. Yeah. I mean, it is sad that somebody tosses and says the difference I feel now. It’s why I did this time last February to decide if everybody does their manque would probably be my energy and concentration levels.

Darren: Yeah, yeah, absolutely, I mean, that’s the first time I’ve had concentration, but it makes complete sense because your body’s just operating in a much more efficient way and therefore you’re hydrated because if we’re dehydrated, the cognitive function of brain function goes down. And if you’re having enough water, you’re getting the right nutrition. The body’s just working as it should, really. And for the other thing around, I want to ask you about coaching. Do you think that because obviously we’ve got digital programs that people can do on their own and you were part of the group coaching program, what kind of differences do you think have in the group coaching there versus doing it on your own mind?

Connaire: I think fundamentally being able to share your experiences with people. And if you’re good at talking about people in a different way, you can talk about it. And you sit there and you go through each thing about what you’ve done. And there are other people that you can speak to about it, about their experiences and sort advice from them. And you yourself have been very, very helpful for me, even on calls. And just being able to open up a little bit is from what you said about men. Yeah, it’s very, very easy to simply be quiet, reserved, and not. I don’t talk about sort of how you feel with your physical health, your mental health. So coaching is absolutely imperative for me. I remember that time. I missed it once and I hated it. I really, really, really enjoyed it. And the best you have time for the following day. So anyone looking to do their own coaching, if you want to maximize your results, the coaching is the key. Absolutely.

Darren: Yeah. Because I think the thing I found is that all these conversations that men have going on inside our heads, whether they fear, whether it’s anxiety, whether it’s, you know, it could be even that you can’t do it. You know, we all have the same conversations yet we feel we’re the only ones having erm conversations. So for me, it’s about to let’s have that conversation, let’s open it up and have that conversation. And I just know from my own experiences having just having someone to talk to around the training, just getting a different perspective gives you a different perspective and enables you to kind of, you know, maybe just get strength from somewhere else. Really.

Connaire: Yeah, I think it is the fact that, you know, on your own, the other people do have problems, but there are problems or over that they’re reluctant to talk about it. So definitely part of the country group, I felt totally comfortable to express myself and to share my feelings for that week.

Darren: And yeah. And it’s great. And it was a really great group that he was part of. But, um, so obviously when we first set up, we set a target, say, can you share with everyone where you were when you started in terms of your weight and where you got to. And I got right to the last case, didn’t we, at the end of the week, at the end of the 12 weeks. And yes, when we got to

Connaire: So I was one hundred and six kilos and my target was eighty-five kilos. Yep. Now that wasn’t great and it wasn’t easy and I think you told me that was so but I. Yeah. So I, I think ah when I last called I was ninety points one kilo. Yeah. But I did take you and send you a white message on Saturday three days later. And I’ve reached my target and I, you know, I put five kilos by, by the following three days which I’m still, I’m still not currently in one point one. So I’m still keeping it off. Obviously, there’s been a few things going on. Which is to maintain that I’m fully committed to in the first 12 weeks come August. I must say that. Yeah. For the next election. So yeah. So oh no I lost six kilos.

Darren: Yeah. Which is, which is amazing. Right. And I think it’s even more amazing when you consider the fact that we weren’t doing these extreme diets. Right. We were. Following some really basic principles and the free principles I’ve got in the TT40 are metabolism, movement, and mindset and we’ve talked about all of those in the podcast today are our mindset, support metabolism with the macros and then obviously movement with the various different elements of fitness in there. But like I said at the beginning, it was an absolute pleasure, like working with you. I genuinely mean that. And it’s just I get such a buzz for me personally and this is very selfish. But when people actually have such a big transformation because, yes, the weight thing is great, but it’s more the other things that happen, you know, energy levels and sleep and, you know, like you mentioned, about your alertness and ability to concentrate because, you know, and it sounds really grand, but it is kind of life-changing and. Yeah.

Connaire: I mean, it’s all over my body shape. I mean, you’ve got a picture of me from where my weight is, this is a different person. I’ve got four freedoms. It’s like I mean, so even as much as I’ve lost, I’ve lost weight. I’ve turned off a hell of a lot of propaganda against this sort of muscle tone. So potentially I’ve lost more fat. You turned up a little bit more so now, and it was a pleasure. It taught me a lot of new life choices in the last year, which I didn’t have previously, and I mean that I really do. And I would just never go on back to that lifestyle again because this just does it. What Do you think is an interesting thing? Do you what you want to do? I sort of like a different person. Totally, totally different person, fitter and healthier. But more importantly, the fact is my mental state of health. Yeah. Really, I’m really, really tired of those white and I’ve got fit, but my actual mental state of health is so, so much better. And I know it’s such a big topic now, again, that we speak about going after all this. I’ve done the fundamental part of always do I show up in my head?

Darren: Yeah. And I think that’s a great note to end on, really, because like you say, you know, it is very topical right now and mental health is spoken about a lot. But what I think is not spoken about enough is a resolution to it. And unfortunately, you know, we talk a lot about the pharmaceutical element of it. And I’m not saying that that’s not valid, but there is a huge element of lifestyle and lifestyle choices which contribute to our mental health. So, yeah, I mean, I really appreciate you coming on. I mean, this is one thing you would say to anyone listening to this is kind of like I have tried things before or sitting on the fence about making a change. It doesn’t have to be with a Fitter Healthier Dad. What would you say to people listening?

Connaire: Don’t be afraid to put yourself out there. Don’t be afraid to work hard if you want to make a change. If you want to try to save for this program, yeah, but just do it. If you’re going to do it, do it properly. Put your savings rate at one percent. If you are going to do it, do it with conviction. That’s what I would say.

Darren: Well, thank you very much for coming on the podcast. I really appreciate it. And I hope people listening appreciate your story. And I know you’ve got some other challenges. I just want to wish you all the very best with that. And yeah, look forward to getting cracking again with you in August.

Connaire: I’m currently looking forward to it. And thank you for your words of advice.

Darren: Thanks for listening to the Fitter Healthier Dad Podcast. If you enjoyed today’s episode, please hit subscribe. And I would really appreciate it if you could leave a review on iTunes. All the things mentioned on the website will be in the show notes and a full transcription is over at fitterhealthierdad.com