There’s a very socially active group of Dad’s for my youngest son’s year group.

We’ve had five official Dads night outs (that I’ve organised and will loop back to tomorrow) with attendances up to 20 or so.

And there’s Wednesday night football and drinks afterwards.

I was chatting to several of the Dads in the park after school the other day.

A few were on the beers.

I wasn’t as I was driving.

“You don’t drink presumably?” said one of the Dads that I know less well.

In a repeat of an assumption that’s been made thousands of times over the years.

One of the other dads jumped in with “I’ve never seen anyone drink vodka as fast as Jon”.

We were around at his house a month or so ago and, I must admit, I had a bit too much.

“Yeah, about that” I responded.

“Next time I come round, can I have a bigger glass please?”

I explained that I drink everything fast.

Water, milk, coffee, everything.

And I also just drink a lot of liquid in a day compared to most people (mainly water).

I also eat fast.

It’s not uncommon at social occasions that my wife will kick me under the table and glance around to indicate to me that everyone else has barely started when I have nearly finished my meal.

As a kid I would have finished all my popcorn at the cinema before the film even started.

And years of my mother telling me “Some Ethiopian child would love that” has left me always finishing everything on my plate.

Now, I fully understand that I could just eat and drink more slowly.

And I try.

I really do.

But I quickly forget.

So I’ve realised over the years that the answer is not to rely on memory and willpower to behave differently.

It is better to change my environment to guide those better choices.

If I am drinking, and it’s an option, I’ll usually have spirits.

Less impact on the waistline and how I feel the next day.

But, if it’s a small glass with equal volume of vodka and mixer, as it was on this occasion, it’s gone within minutes.

A large glass with more mixer takes longer and paces me.

It’s not uncommon that I’ll have a pint of mixer with a double in.

Which I’ll drink at the same pace as I might do a pint of beer for the same volume of alcohol but less calories and hangover.

When I’m eating I’ll only plate up the amount that I need as I know I won’t leave anything on my plate.

I try and avoid having extra on the table, as I know I’ll eat that as well.

Conscious decisions done to shape my choices rather than relying on willpower to make a different choice that I probably won’t.

And you’ll have similar (if not identical) things that you can do.

Much love,

Jon ‘Social Sec’ Hall

P.S. If actual help on developing an approach you’re likely to do sounds better than just been told the same things again that you’ve never maintained before, then jump in here —->


RISE in Macclesfield was established in 2012 and specialise in Group Personal Training weight loss programmes for those that don’t like the gym and find diets boring and restrictive!

Jon Hall
Jon Hall

When not helping people to transform their lives and bodies, Jon can usually be found either playing with his kids or taxi-ing them around. If you'd like to find out more about what we do at RISE then enter your details in the box to the right or bottom of this page or at - this is the same way every single one of the hundreds who've described this as "one of the best decisions I've ever made" took their first step.