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Me and My Health: Jim Gordon

Jim Gordon (44) owns Body Success Fitness, an all-female hybrid gym and training facility in Bangor, Holywood and another that has recently opened at the Ards business hub.


Jim Gordon says he plans to stay fit well into old age

Jim Gordon says he plans to stay fit well into old age

Jim Gordon says he plans to stay fit well into old age

Do you take regular exercise?

As a fitness coach, I need to keep strong and healthy so I can give my best to clients.

I do four one-hour workouts each week, starting with stretching and mobility exercises, followed by a power and strength routine.

As the business is quite young, I am putting in a lot of hours, often working from 6am until 9pm.

Part of that work is coaching group sessions of up to eight women, so I’m pretty active every day.

I started training when I was around 14 (30 years ago!) and went on to gain qualifications in sports injuries and personal training.

Over the years, I spoke to women who said they didn’t feel comfortable in a traditional gym.

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I opened my first females-only gym six years ago because it’s so important to have a place where you can gain strength and grow in confidence.

What is the worst illness you’ve had?

I’ve been incredibly lucky — the worst thing I’ve had is the flu. I have helped many people with post-injury/illness rehabilitation and know how challenging this can be.

A lot of people that I’m working with at the moment have arthritis or joint problems and supervised strength training and stretching can really make a difference.

It’s important to look at each individual’s problems and see what they need.

For example, knee pain could actually be caused by an issue in the hips.

How healthy is your diet?

I think I eat pretty healthily but I don’t deny myself, especially on the weekends when I’ll have a takeaway.

During the week I stick to a fairly high protein diet as it gives me the strength and energy that I need.

The new gym at Ards business hub only opened in June so I’m busier than ever and a big healthy breakfast is the key. I make a seven-egg omelette most mornings — that’s with six egg whites, one full egg and sauteed veggies with some ham and low-fat cheese.

I get 60 grams of protein from 450 calories and it keeps me full.

Between running three gyms, I often don’t get a chance to eat lunch until late afternoon.

In the gym, we talk to the clients about nutrition and mindset. It’s all about making changes slowly and steadily so that you see the benefits.

Any bad habits?

My worst habit is scrolling on social media rather than going to bed at a decent time. Before you know it, two hours have gone by. I get up at 5.30am as our morning classes start at 6am so I need to get to bed earlier. I’ve started leaving the phone outside the door so I’m not tempted to pick it up during the night.

Do you drink or smoke?

In my younger days I enjoyed a drink, but now I’ll only have a drink maybe two or three times a year.

I find that if I have alcohol I get bad anxiety the next day so I’ll only really have a drink at Christmas and perhaps a summer family get together. I have to admit that I also have one cigar at Christmas too.

Do you take any supplements?

I take vitamin D and omega-3. Vitamin D is essential because we get so little sun here. It’s great for immunity and sleep. The omega-3 is great for blood, skin and mood. I think it makes a big difference.

How do you take time out?

I love spending time with my 12-year-old daughter. My favourite thing is taking her into Belfast where she goes to the Circus School.

How well do you sleep?

I sleep really well now that I’ve got a proper bedtime protocol. No social media and I play an Audible book to relax. It really stops the chatter from my brain and helps me to unwind before bed.

Do you worry about getting old?

Not at all. I feel better now than I did in my 30s. I’m enjoying life, and I’m eating and moving better than ever.

I plan to keep fit well into my 70s. If you don’t exercise you lose 1% of your strength every year. I plan to keep doing what I’m doing.

What is your go-to product that keeps you feeling healthy?

Water! I drink at least two litres a day and I know that if I’m feeling a little grumpy then I’ve not had enough water. I also believe that it helps to prevent injury and keeps your joints loose and your mind sharp.

For more information, see www.bodysuccessfitness.co.uk

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