Friday, July 01, 2011

SPL Clubs Play Fitball

In the not too dim and distant past I used to work for a health charity in Midlothian.

I'll admit I wasn't straight from central casting. The only way I become a poster boy for health and fitness is if you need someone to pose for the "before" section of your "before and after" pictures.

I'm not one of life's joggers, teetotallers or carrot chompers. I do actually walk for about an hour and 40 minutes three or four days a week at the moment and with a cringe I remember a particularly wooden Gavin Hastings telling me that would do some good in an old 'get fat Scots healthy' advert.

Sorry, Gav, but the only discernible impact is to make me moan about having to walk for an hour and 40 minutes three or four days a week.

Anyway although locked in a cupboard to hide me from public view for most of my time at this health charity, I was released long enough to do some publicity for a men's health programme we were running.

And it was a hard slog. Scottish men aren't naturally given to such group activities. Too reserved, stubborn, proud, embarrassed, fearful of the unknown. Like drawing teeth.

Solving the nation's issues with diet and exercise was always going to be harder than just lumbering the Scottish Cup with that awful Active Nation sobriquet.

Kudos then to the SPL clubs for backing the Football Fans in Training scheme. Such programmes rely on tangible results for their survival and last year this one certainly seemed to achieve something quite impressive.

Perhaps it's because it provides an environment that is familiar and comfortable or that you're with folk with at least a football club in common.

Whatever the reason, it works. Weight is lost, unhealthy bodies become healthier bodies.

And that leads us to an "SPL CLUBS DOING SOMETHING GOOD FOR SOCIETY" shocker.

Most refreshing.

Full text of a press release I was sent about how to get involved below. I'd encourage anyone who thinks they - or someone they know - could benefit to at least find out more.

On this occasion doing as I say and not as I do certainly seems to be worth it.

Lose weight, get fitter and get more out of life with your local SPL club* - Football Fans in Training 2011/12

Following the very successful Football Fans in Training (FFIT) programme last season, the community coaches at your local SPL club are looking for men who feel a bit out of shape to sign up for the 3 FFIT programmes being run in 2011/12.

Men completing FFIT last year lost a total of 2.3 tonnes in weight and 24m around their bellies.

They loved the 12 week course activities like a night out with the lads without the drinks and many said they looked forward to coming every week.

You can register now for FFIT 2011/12 at your local SPL club if you are:

Male - 35-65 years - With a BMI of at least 28 kg/m2 - Or a belly of at least 40 inches/trouser waist size of at least 38 inches

Visit our website at:

Call 0800 389 2129, Text FFIT to 88802 or email

*The 13 clubs offering FFIT free of charge during 2011/2012 are:

  • Aberdeen
  • Celtic
  • Dundee United
  • Dunfermline
  • Hamilton Accies
  • Heart of Midlothian
  • Hibernian
  • Inverness Caledonian Thistle
  • Kilmarnock
  • Motherwell
  • Rangers
  • St Johnstone
  • St Mirren

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