Returning to the gym after a decade away: A month of gains 10 months ago

Returning to the gym after a decade away: A month of gains

In partnership with Protein World

What a month it has been

When I discovered that I would be spending the month of January attempting to get into the shape of my life alongside a member of last year's Love Island cast, I was a little trepidatious.

As the title of this series suggests, I had not been inside of a gym for more than 10 years and, while not in dreadful shape, I was unfit. I was daunted by the prospect of lifting weights and putting my body through physical strain.

Not only was there the thought of the workouts I was about to do, but also the change to my diet. As someone who didn't really gain much weight for the majority of my life (I was a very, very large baby - like Michelin Man arms-large), I had grown accustomed to essentially eating what I wanted. That was about to change.

At first the changes to my lifestyle were a bit of a shock. I had never once drank a protein shake and while a fan of healthy eating, had never really thought deeply about the levels of protein or carbs that I was ingesting.


Thanks to the nutritional guide laid out for me by the good people at Protein World, adapting my diet wasn't actually that hard. Instead of snacking on bad things that weren't good for me, I snacked on high protein healthy snacks like their Protein Clusters which were useful for a post-workout snack.

A welcome surprise too was my enjoyment of the Protein World shakes. Whether they were used as a quick meal replacement when I was in a wild rush, or simply as a post-workout drink, they really hit the spot and were surprisingly tasty.

And as much as I genuinely dreaded hitting the gym after so long away, I was pleasantly surprised by how quickly I got into it. There were some initial struggles, such as realising how little weight I could lift when on certain machines.

But after a couple of weeks something happened that I never, ever expected to happen: I began to really enjoy the gym and the feeling gained from going there three or four times a week.

I found myself chilling at home in the evening thinking 'I can't wait to hit the gym tomorrow', which was equally shocking and delightful.

As I sit here, slightly more muscular and slightly lighter than I was a month before, the biggest reflection of the change I've undergone is not a massive six-pack or 5 percent body fat, but the fact that I now see myself going to the gym for the rest of my life. That's genuinely more than I ever expected.

Find Jack's #SixPackJack journey with Protein World here.