How changing my job changed my diet!

From the age of 17 to 21 I worked as a plasterer and builder, on site 5 to 6 days a week and eating 3 to 4 bacon sandwiches a day! In between, or if I was too busy to eat I would have meal replacement nourishment drinks, along with 4L of Coke or Fanta every day.  It wasn’t good, but it was all part of the culture.

Time passed, and when I wasn’t at work I tended to do loads of cooking at home and took inspiration from like-minded TV Chefs like The Big Hairy Bikers and Gordon Ramsey.  Back on site I really wasn’t enjoying the work, and eventually, my boss was the one who asked me why I didn’t get into cooking as all I did all day was talk about food!I found my way onto the apprenticeship scheme at Westminster College and at one of their employer open days who should be there but Suzanne James! Suzanne’s speech really inspired me, enough to decide to apply to join the company and I was lucky enough to be chosen. Phew!

It wasn’t all plain sailing though, the first year definitely had its ups and downs. I found the hours and the job a challenge. I was very set in my ways and struggled a lot with low energy levels and mood swings. Natalia – Head Chef at the time – was a qualified nutritionist and explained to me how my diet would be playing a big part in affecting my performance.

In my second year with the company, I noticed I was putting on weight (easy to do when surrounded by amazing pastry chefs)! Between that and talking to Natalia, and also Ben (from Bottlebrush Ferments who uses our professional kitchen) I started to feel like I was at risk of serious weight gain, or even worse diabetes. Ben told me about the Keto Diet and I finally felt ready to listen.

From a small beginning, I have researched more and more and between November 2017 and April 2018 I lost a total of 2 stone. I now live a very different lifestyle; I go to the gym 3 to 4 days a week and train a mix of callisthenics, endurance & strength training. My diet now includes fasting for 2 days a week and the Keto Diet (The keto diet is a low-carb, high-fat diet. It lowers blood sugar and insulin levels, and shifts the body’s metabolism away from carbs and towards fat and ketones.).

The impact of these changes is that I am much more motivated in both my work and personal life.  I have much more energy and find the longer shifts at work easier. I have confidence in my own strength and willpower and find the days when I need to get up at 6.30am much easier than they used to be.

It never occurred to me that changing my job would have such a drastic effect upon my diet, lifestyle or relationship with food, but I am very glad that it has!