I am Stephen Retief I’m 56 years old. I started smoking when I was 15 years old. I was quite sportive I played rugby and was quite good in athletics middle distances. I’m one of those unlucky ones that gained weight very easily, and while I was young losing it was quite easy. I got married when I was 23 years old and we had our daughter when I was 25. I stopped playing sport and the good live started, partying and eating and just doing all the unhealthy stuff. As diabetes runs in my family I was always aware of the dangers that it can happen to me, but did nothing to minimize the risk.
When I was about 50 I visited family of mine in Capetown that I didn’t had contact for many years. There I met one of my cousins and he lost both his legs due to diabetes, what a wake-up call. I almost immediately stopped drinking and smoking, then I started to gain even more weight. I’m 175 m tall and I weighed 120kg That’s when I bought my first bicycle to start exercising. Being quite competitive the cycling bug bit me and I wanted to compete and get better. I did my first Desert Dash in a Four man team when I was 51 and did it 3 times but cycling is not for heavy dudes. I also realized that I did not get the energy I needed from the food I ate. I felt lazy and bloated after every meal. Then I decided to enter for a 2 man Desert Dash and I realized that I need to loose weight if want to succeed. That’s when I decided to call on the pros to help me with nutrition and I ended up with Analien.
She put me on a low fodmap diet for three weeks, immediately I could feel the difference no more blotted stomach and the energy levels increased drastically. I lost 20 kg in 2019 and that put me on a different level when exercising and cycling. I and my team mate completed the 374 km 20h 05. This year if everything went as planned (Covid19 permitting) I’m attempting the race Solo. I gained 2kg in winter and have to loose another 5 kg before December, I’m sure with Analien’s guidance we will achieve that. But if I can emphasize that the saying you can not out train a bad diet is so true. What I will tell my 50-year-old self is to get your nutrition right before you start to exercise. Its never too late to start making healthy choices.