Today I turn 45 years old. The last year has been tough. I’ve struggled with my autism diagnosis, finding acceptance with my diagnosis at 44, but what really hit me was losing my dear friend Jon last month.
Jon was diagnosed with multiple system atrophy (MSA) in 2019. Whenever I could, I visited him at his home after work to help him maintain his independence. We did this using exercise and banter. I did this every week, Monday to Friday, when I could, for four years. In that time, he never complained and always worked hard no matter the terrible prognosis.
The last six months his MSA became more aggressive and I found it hard watching one of my great mates suffering. My work is difficult anyway, I work with some really poorly people and come across challenging situations daily. It was all taking a toll and I needed something for me, an escape. I always say that “you are never too old to start,” so in November last year I put my money where my mouth was and took up Strongman training. I have been consistently training each week for the last 7 months, my strength both physically and mentally has grown and I gained 14kg in weight. I have my first competition on Sunday 2nd July.
Exercise and sport has kept me going through this last year. We all know the benefits for health both mental and physical but sometimes it’s seems too difficult to make the start. That’s when you need to go for it and take the plunge.