It's not too late to sign up for the Sports & Education Trust's Football Fans In Training programme!
Football Fans in Training is a hugely successful lifestyle programme aimed at men aged 35 – 65 years old and with a waist size of 38 inches or more.
Delivered at professional clubs, by professional clubs, participants get the chance to learn about healthy nutrition, healthy lifestyle choices, and take part in gentle physical activity which builds up to hopefully taking part in regular football sessions.
Following a funding grant kindly given by the Sports Council Trust Company, WWSET completed delivery of the first 12 week FFIT programme over the summer which aimed to engage with WWFC fans and help them improve their health and wellbeing as well as providing an opportunity to gain a behind-the-scenes look at Wycombe Wanderers.
For anybody who feels they or anybody they know might like to get involved in either of the remaining two FFIT programmes (scheduled to begin on 6th September 2017 and 10th January 2018), please don’t hesitate to get in touch with WWSET’s Community Health Manager Sam Parker (firstname.lastname@example.org) who will be only too happy to explain more about the programme and answer any questions you may have.
Each week’s FREE session during the programme was split between relaxed and supportive classroom based activity in the Matrix Centre (the dedicated education suite at Adams Park) where participants explored ways in which to make subtle changes to their diet, nutrition and lifestyle to achieve maximum benefit, as well as ways in which to effectively and sustainably introduce elements of physical activity into their daily lives to realise associated health benefits.
Following the time spent in the Matrix Centre, participants would move outside where they would be put through their paces using the stadium as a large gym area. The stairs in the stands, the pitch, the car park and the marquee were all used by WWSET’s professional coaches as well as other professional sports providers to deliver a wide range of physical activities and exercises.
We are pleased to report that all the effort that the participants put in over the past three months has certainly been worth it and fantastic results have been achieved.
Of the nine guys who completed the programme, a total weight loss of 44.5kg was achieved…that’s over seven stone!
In addition the guys managed to reduce their waist sizes by a massive combined total of 42.5cm, which is incredible considering the fact that the FFIT programme concentrates on education and awareness regarding fitness and nutrition, and promotes making only small changes to dietary intake and exercise levels in order to implement slow, manageable but most importantly long-lasting behaviour changes.
There are numerous reasons why the first FFIT programme delivered by WWSET has been so successful, but one of the main ones was due to the sense of camaraderie that the group quickly created between themselves.
Following the first introductory session it quickly became apparent that all those present had similar issues and challenges to overcome…
- No time to exercise;
- No time to prepare healthy meals/snacks
- Limited knowledge regarding what is healthy/unhealthy
- Difficulty changing bad habits
- Previous bad experiences with gyms and/or diets
- Previously lost weight but had reached a plateau
However, from day one, all the guys built up great relationships and supported each other along the journey. A Facebook group was created where the guys regularly posted achievements and challenges as well as words of encouragement and advice to the others trying to reach their personal goals.
Another critical factor that the participants identified as being a key motivator to succeed was the involvement of the football club they support. All participants were given a free WWFC kit in order to promote a team dynamic and work ethic, and the fantastic setting of Adams Park, home to the team they all care so much about, proved to be an inspiring place to learn and develop.
Here’s what a few of the participants had to say when asked about their thoughts regarding the FFIT programme…
“Though I easily walk on my own, I find it more difficult to motivate myself to do regular physical exercises. Working together and supporting each other as a group and even through the Facebook page made the whole experience more enjoyable and easier”.
- Participant Peter
“Seeing results has made the FFIT programme really enjoyable. In addition, the venue is great – and going on the pitch was great. I also liked being given the kit, enjoyed the company of the guys and enjoyed the exercise, we all struggle and puff but I don’t feel awkward or embarrassed”.
- Participant Andy
“I particularly enjoyed the camaraderie with the guys as we all had a common goal. I learned a lot about nutrition, calories and fitness, and thought that the course was really well-presented, especially as it was the first for WWFC and Sam & Andy”.
- Participant Malcolm
So, in summing up, WWSET would like to say huge congratulations to all the participants who have achieved so much during the 12 week programme, and let them know that everybody associated with the club hopes they continue to lead a healthier (and happier) lifestyle long into the future! Furthermore, we look forward to seeing them again as all graduates are invited to pop in on future sessions as our “legends” to share stories with the new cohorts and be a part of the ever growing FFIT team.