Dad's incredible body transformation sparked by picture of Hobbit

Jason Smith, from Surrey, was approaching 50 and a failure in his own eyes
-Credit: (Image: Cover Images)

A dad who considered himself a failure as he approached 50 has undergone a complete physical transformation after being inspired by a picture of a Hobbit. Jason Smith, from Surrey, hated himself so much he would shout at himself in the bathroom mirror most mornings.

He said: "I was depressed, had little energy and little ability to do anything active, which restricted how I could play with my then nine-year-old son. I was reliant on medication for hypertension, and high cholesterol and was suffering from fatty liver, leaving me with daily dull aching pain.

"I felt terrible. I was embarrassed and frankly, I hated myself. I knew I had brought this on myself through bad lifestyle choices," the former management consultant says. Jason was overweight and depressed.

He lost all sense of self and had no confidence. "This made me reluctant to do things I used to love; like socialise and live life. It made me almost reclusive except for work. I hated how I had let myself become and couldn’t see a way out. Then, when I was scrolling on Instagram in January 2019, a picture of the Hobbit changed everything."

Jason Smith has transformed himself
Jason Smith has transformed himself -Credit:Cover Images

It was a whimsical post. A happy image of Tolkien’s character alongside the caption: "I’m going on an adventure".

He said: "That picture made me think 'That’s how I want to feel.' I wanted to capture that joy, fun and sense of adventure that I’d known as a child. I knew I was a million miles away from that, and I decided in that moment I was going to make a change and make myself feel and live better.

"I pictured how the future version of me would live and started doing those things straight away’, he says. Jason, now 54, immediately started walking, then took up running, cycling, weight training, swimming and tennis lessons. He gave up drinking and improved his diet.

"Food had been about convenience; microwave meals often with fries. Like many people, I would pour a glass of wine in the evening to relax and accompany my poor food, and then have two or three more as the night progressed," he remembers. But by May that year, Jason was a different person. He’d lost 25kg in weight and felt better than he ever had.

Jason Smith has transformed himself
Jason Smith has transformed himself -Credit:Cover Images

"I remember other dads who I had met through our sons playing together asking me what I did to look so good in such a short time," he says. Within those four months, Jason was feeling drastically better and was able to come off the blood pressure tablets, statins and antidepressants.

He also reduced his body fat from 28% to 12%. Jason now feels amazing and has become a personal trainer, helping others achieve their fitness goals. The founder of Fit in Midlife adds: "The overriding feeling is one of gratitude that such a simple and perhaps unexpected event made such a massive difference to my life and I am incredibly thankful to the person who posted the picture. I now want to inspire and help others make the same kind of changes I made and experience the joy and energy it brings.

"My outward appearance was probably similar to most men my age and I maybe didn’t look too bad. But I knew about my health issues, my depression, my lack of energy and I suspect others may feel similar things. Many, myself included at the time, don’t believe a better life is possible for people in midlife. I aim to show them it is and help them achieve it."