A little over 18 months ago I weighed in at 109kgs.

After relying on a better-than-average metabolism and reasonably active lifestyle through my 20’s, my sweet-tooth and lack of self control when it came to junk food finally caught up with me in my 30’s. It happened gradually and I really didn’t realise there was an issue despite the widening waistline and increasing niggles affecting my lower back. It got to the point where I couldn’t sleep comfortably after 2am, but much to the frustration of my long-suffering wife, I still wouldn’t acknowledge there was a problem.

The turning point came one day after I’d been out for a jog. By the time I got home, I had my shirt off to deal with the heat and the reflection that I saw in the window didn’t look anything like the picture of myself I had in my head from when I was 20-something. Something had to change.

Emma and I decided to clean up our diet and trial a more paleo/primal approach as a family for 6 weeks. The transition to a wholefood diet was helped with a stock of 180 Nutrition Superfood to use instead of fast food for an easy meal option. A cooked breakfast or wholefood lunch can take a bit more prep than a bowl of cereal or a loaf of white bread & chocolate milk – which was a staple for me on my old diet. So the 180 Superfood was a bit of a Godsend in terms of a healthy, wholefood "fast food". I dropped 6 kilos in those first 6 weeks and with more energy than I’d had in years, the decision to stick with it was a no-brainer. In the subsequent months, I got down to 85kg at 11.7% body fat.

I started doing a bit of CrossFit but soon realised that I needed to put more time into bringing up my core strength before I did some damage; my back was a lot better, but still on a knife-edge when it came to any high intensity training with weight. So I’ve been training at Activ8 for the past 9 months, complimented with a balanced, clean diet. Today I weigh in at 94kg at 12.1% body fat. I’m faster, fitter and stronger now more than I’ve ever been. I can’t emphasise enough the impact that simply changing the way I ate had on my all-round health and well-being. It didn’t take any high intensity exercise to shed more than 15 kilos – that was just clean eating. But I felt healthy and so much fitter, so the motivation to train wasn’t difficult and it no longer felt like an uphill battle.

I’ve got a long way to go to reach some of my fitness goals this year, but I’m looking forward to the journey. If you’re reading this and are interested in how clean eating looks or how to make it work for you, we’ve got lots of great ideas and recipes here. Or for a comprehensive resource with recipes, video, meal plans and more, 180 Nutrition’s Clean Eating Program is where I’d start.

I continue to use 180 Nutrition’s 100% Natural Protein Superfood on a regular basis to supplement my regular diet. It’s a convenient whole-food option when I’m short on time or need the extra protein and nutrients for muscle recovery and to support my training. If you haven’t given it a go and would like to start by trying a four serve sample, pick up a pack here using the discount code 180STARTER to get 30% OFF. (Discount expires on January 30).

But if you take one thing away from this – it’s to say cleaning up your diet is worth the effort! The long term benefits for your health and well-being easily outweigh the inconvenience of not falling back on the fast food option or sugar-laden snack to refuel.