Autistic Nick’s Mental Health and Fitness Journey

Autistic Nick’s Mental Health and Fitness Journey

Up until the age of 16 I was what would today be classed as skinny. I had a 28” waist and I for the most part could eat whatever I liked.

Then I hit 18 and that’s where things took a down turn.

I started to put on weight, whereas previously I hadn’t needed to worry I was soon piling on the kilos.

During that time my mental health began to suffer, and I became deeply depressed.

Shopping for clothing would be an issue that I hadn’t faced before, previously I could walk into a store and select some jeans or a short’s and not even try them on inside the fitting room as I knew that they would fit me.

But that all changed when what was once a five-minute trip turned into a half an hour of trying to fit the size that would eventually fit me.

All the while my mental health was spiralling out of control.

I would eat as little as possible on some days, convinced that the less I ate the more weight would fall miraculously away from my body.

It doesn’t work like that.

I didn’t want to get out of bed most days.

But I would convince myself that if I did an hour of exercise then everything would be ok.

And for the most part it was.

But the problem was that I WASN’T losing any weight.

Which is the vicious cycle of losing weight whilst battling a deep dark depression.

That’s when I started to first exercise.

Over the years I have battled with my weight. I’ve done endless, countless diets, and bought celebrity work out videos and sweated and counted calories and either lost weight only to put it back on again or I’ve maintained my weight for a few years only to have it slowly creep back up on me.

Recently I started to notice (after years of putting on weight I’ve become an expert in knowing the signs) and so this year I took some action.

I think that even though I was running, and doing aqua fit (only in the summer!) it wasn’t enough and I’d become stuck and needed some help so I reached out and I went onto Facebook and began to search for personal trainers in my area.

That’s when I found Danielle from “It’s a Lifestyle Health and Fitness” group via Facebook

Along with employing her I am using this app called ‘My Fitness Pal’.

About My Fitness Pal

MyFitnessPal is a smartphone app and website that tracks diet and exercise to determine optimal caloric intake and nutrients for the users’ goals and uses gamification elements to motivate users. Users can either scan the barcodes of various food items or manually add them in the database of over five million different foods.

I have been given a daily calorie intake of 2,205. Which is divided between breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.

For every food item I must manually enter or scan the bar code of that particular food into the My Fitness Pal data base.

I then have let the app know how many servings of that particular food that I had so that it can make an accurate record of it.

For example, if I have 2 pieces of toast, I must enter the number 2 into the number of servings or if I have 100g of ham for my lunch I must enter that into the app.

At the end of the day I can see an overview of my nutrition intake which is broken down into separate categories

My Calorie Breakdown
My Breakfast Calories
My Lunch Calories

So far employing the services of Danielle along with my personalised workout to be done inside/outside my home I am doing really well.

I’ve so far lost one kilo this past week.

But what are the benefits of working out?

The Benefits Of Exercise On Your Mental Health:

Mental Health Benefits

It can decrease your symptoms of depression

Multiple studies have concluded that regular aerobic exercise—reduces the symptoms of clinical depression.

Improves your learning abilities

Exercise can improve your capacity to learn and retain new information.

Sharpens your memory

Exercise can give you a sharper memory.

Alleviates anxiety

Running and other vigorous forms of exercise can reduce anxiety symptoms and help you relax.

Helps you sleep better

Exercise can aid you in helping you get a quicker onset of sleep, as well as a deeper sleep, and the reduction of symptoms in those with insomnia.

Boosts self-esteem

Your self-esteem can be improved by exercising on a regular basis.

Increases your creativity

Exercise can increase your creatively output.

The road to being a healthier version of yourself isn’t an easy one, far from it.

If it was that easy to lose weight and maintain it then there wouldn’t be any gyms, exercise apps, weight loss reality shows, to exist.

I think that I’ve come to realisation that in order for me to lose weight and be healthier I had to reach out to a professional who has inspired and motivated me to not only lose weight but and this is the important part maintain that weight loss once I’ve reached my goal weight.

If you want to join Danielle’s fitness group and you live in the Burns Beach Area of Perth WA then jump onto her Facebook page to begin your journey with her.

Carry on the Conversation

As always, I can also be found on Twitter: @AutisticNick9 and at my email

If you like what you have seen on the site today, then show your support by liking the Autistic Nick Facebook page.

Thank you for reading and I will see you next time for more thoughts from across the spectrum.

5 thoughts on “Autistic Nick’s Mental Health and Fitness Journey”

  1. I’m so glad you found a way to manage your weight and also get. Healthier mentally. I was of normal weight until age 25 and then slowly I started gaining weight until I reached 80kg at 1.53m In 2017. I lost ten kg in the six months that followed, only to gain some back gradually over the next 18 months. I can’t do a lot of exercise because I’m very uncoordinated and out of shape, but I love to walk and swim.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I used My Fitness Pal to help me lose (a lot!) of weight too. I maintained the loss and found it way easier to be more active once I had less body fat, so I’d say it was a good deal all around. I hope you enjoy a similar success. Good luck on your health journey!

    Liked by 1 person

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