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Colin Campbell
by Colin Campbell on 02/09/19 18:00

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...Goes the switch

Much of my life outside of work (and often during work) is about trying to “click the switch”.

I arrived in Nottingham fresh from being a House Officer at Glasgow Dental Hospital.

I was 23 when I arrived in Nottingham and over the previous 6 years of Dental School and House Officer work, I had gained six stone in weight.

I left my Secondary School as Captain of the Scotland Basketball Team and left Dental School 18 stone.

Since that time, my life has been a battle of trying to click the switch back to a regular lifestyle that is health and sustaining and sustainable.

Buddhists call it radical self-enquiry.

I call it trying to click the switch.

In my mind I would love this life where I would limit what goes in, maximise the quantity and quality of exercise available, look after my rest and recovery and be in this phenomenal shape.

In reality… Not very often.

It seems easy once the switch is clicked and you’re in the zone, it’s simple. You just don’t eat chocolate or drink beer and you go out on your bike.

What is so difficult about that?

Outside of that though it’s impossible and the “lizard brain” talks you out of it and into the bad things all of the time.

From time to time though the switch, clicks and I enter into “training mode”.

Training mode is a wonderful place to be, it’s quite selfish but hugely gratifying.

It allows you to buy calories back with 4 hour bike rides worth 3000 calories.

It forces you to go to bed early and monitor your sleep.

You don’t eat chocolate or drink beer or eat crisps or biscuits or cakes or deserts or anything other than that, which fuels your training.

6 weeks before the Outlaw Triathlon in 2015 it clicked, I dropped to 13 stone dead and raced an Ironman Triathlon in 11 hours.

2 years later, at La Marmotte with David Nelson it never clicked.

That was a struggle.

Last year it clicked and perhaps the best way it ever had, 3 months out from the Haute Route in Italy, I bottomed out at 12 stone 3 and rode the middle day of the Haute Route as the best time I’d ever had on a bike.

This year I refuse to click, I tried and tried for months out but I would still resort to nothing round to the Co-op and buying a 200g bar of Dairy Milk and a big bag of crisps, plus something else for Callum while we sat in the living room on the floor and watched a movie every time my Wife went out.

The weight went up, the fitness went down, the self-loathing arrived, the cycle deepened.

Then it clicked.

If I knew exactly how to manage that, how to make it happen, then It would be fine and It would be great all of the time but I am in the middle now of what I call “living in draconia” it feels magic though I’ve lashed past 13 stone a few days ago and I don’t travel to the race for 5 weeks.

I promised myself this time that the switch will stay clicked.

I won’t click it back in the winter I will retain this health, this fitness and this happiness and I will never drift back again.

We will see about that…

Blog Post Number - 2114

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Colin Campbell
Written by Colin Campbell
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