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Endeavouring to address the unhealthier elements of my lifestyle, over recent months I’d adopted a strategy of reducing my intake of fat based food. In conjunction with these dietary concessions, prior to COVID induced incarceration, I’d also engaged a Personal Trainer to draw me up an exercise plan.

This personal fitness and diet programme has already seen me lose twenty five pounds. Unfortunately that wasn’t a weight measurement; moreover a consequence of having my pocket picked during a power walk.

Following last year’s heart attack, unsurprisingly I’m significantly more conscious of my own mortality. This blot on the health landscape hammering home how much I’d taken my physical health for granted; this complacency leading to neglectful life threatening self-care practises. Subsequently, in the first few months of 2020 I’d made good strides fitness wise with 3-4 times weekly gym visits and sensible dietary adjustments.

Currently, though, whilst awaiting parole from this COVID gaol, the consequential lack of exercise and poor diet choices means the positive fitness strides made’ve received a huge setback. GJ Strachan lapsing back into a lifestyle program underpinned by excessive salted snack and alcohol consumption.

Consequently, I feel physically under the weather, which’s manifested a subsequent downturn in my mental health. Diminishment of physical fitness, leaving my neurological cacodemons freer rein to spew their dark agendas.


During the lockdown, I’m undertaking exercise in the shape of gardening and walking. However, they say your body tells you when something is amiss, and at the weekend mine metaphorically emailed to advise my current physical regime wasn’t suffice for the plateau of fitness sought……. The electronic message also included a great comedic video of a tortoise chasing a ball, along with a joke about ferrets.

Following this bodily wake up call, GJ Strachan esq has finally admitted to himself the requirement to significantly curb his self-indulgence with that which leads me astray. This quartet of habitually visited bedfellows an amalgam of cheese, crisps, vino and bathing in Guinness.

Don’t get me wrong, previously most of my main meals incorporated a healthy salad accompaniment, however I’ve been told kebab meat negates the dietary boon provided by lettuce.

The element of the diet I struggle most with is reducing the high resultant from a marmite on toast breakfast. Despite being only a few days into this new dietary regime, there are already signs of vegemite withdrawal symptoms.

The lack of marmite in my system has brought about an onset of sweats, shakes and the bizarre belief I’m ex-snooker player John Virgo. It can be quite distressing at times, especially the hate mail from the manufacturers of marmite. On the plus side, though, I recently scored my first ever 147 in snooker.

One of the questions on my initial fitness program consultation was what I was looking to achieve in the first six weeks of the programme. Apparently, “Marmite on toast becoming recognised as a healthy breakfast.” wasn’t the right answer.

Next yours truly was asked about my program goals was the first three months. “Marmite on toast becoming recognised as a healthy breakfast.” still wasn’t the correct answer………GJ Strachan six month objective? Yes, you’ve guessed it;….. And yes it’s still incorrect!

I know what you’re thinking….. You’ll never stick to it Strachan. Within days, your love of Red Leicester, Walker’s Ready Salted, marmite and cabernet sauvignon will derail your noble attempts at self-improvement.

To those doubters I’d retort I’ve got excellent self-discipline when required. An example being the four occasions in recent years when I heroically went a month without alcohol for charitable causes.

Once I have a plan to follow, a goal to strive for, or a project for the greater good, I take on a altogether higher level of stoicism. A tenacity driving men to vanquish all temptation in my path for a worthy cause……. My mantra becoming ‘Get behind me, Satan!”

Anyway, I’m off for lunch……. I wonder if Frank’s Kebabs make deliveries?!

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