The CSM Weight Loss Challenge 2022


I have long suspected that New Year’s resolutions are merely a means to distract people from their otherwise dull and insipid lives. So, it came as no surprise when my Editor, Dom Wightman, told me he intended to make one himself.

Finding these resolutions about as stimulating as a Coleen Nolan tabloid ‘tell-all’, I soon lost interest in the conversation and replied like so:

‘Yes… Oh, a group thing? Right, yes, mm-hmm – wait, what was that? Join them? Take photos of my stomach?’

Well, this was certainly starting to sound more interesting than I had expected, if not a tad perverted. But then came the sober and soul-crushing clarification:

‘James, I want you to take part in a Country Squire weight loss challenge.’

I’ll spare my followers the threat of baring my stomach to them. Besides, it would be too much of a gift to my #FBPE friends. You can just imagine the snickering snarl as they bleat:

‘Oh, look, James Bembridge, the man who thought himself too healthy to take the vaccine now seems to have something of a beer belly himself’

And I’m sure they’d think of endlessly creative ways to pair those unfortunately alliterative words of ‘Bembridge’ and ‘belly’.

There are now five of us enrolled in this competition: Alex Story (@AlexPStory), David Eyles (@Drystonesonnet), Dom (@domwightmanuk), Simon Evans (@TheSimonEvans) and myself (@TheBembridge).

Our progress (or lack of) will be recorded in a weekly podcast. The first of which is an eclectic mix of philosophical curiosity and bitchy reality TV drama. I highly recommend that you watch it. Just don’t be put off by Dom’s avatar – a photo airbrushed to the point that it would perhaps be better described as a digital painting (just kidding, Ed).

I’ll end with this somewhat pertinent quote that Simon sent me last night:

‘Thank Heaven, I have given up smoking again!… God! I feel fit. Homicidal, but fit. A different man. Irritable, moody, depressed, rude, nervy, perhaps; but the lungs are fine.’

– Alan Patrick Herbert

Good Luck to Us All!

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