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Live Longer Wales: Is My Job Killing Me?

Tara Hammett

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Working with the BBC for the programme Is My Job Killing Me? and the troop from the DVLA has been one of the most incredible experiences of my life.

When I took on the project I went into it wanting to help inspire and motivate a team of people to turn their lives around and become healthier with a more positive outlook on life.

Living such an active life myself, I didn't understand what it would feel like to spend working days being sedentary. Before I had the chance to interview some of the employees at the DVLA I thought people would be itching to move more after work.

I was wrong! I couldn't believe it. The more people sat around and rested, the more they wanted to rest.

Sit in the car to work, sit down at the desk, sit down during breaks, sit sit and sit! Didn't these guys realise how dangerous this is? The weight was piling on, they were weak, had back and joint problems and were stressed out and lethargic. It's like the most mundane groundhog day that nobody can get out of!

When my husband went from a manual job to a less active job in the DVLA, maybe it was easy for me to encourage him to make a few changes as we lived together. But would I be able to make such an impact on the team of six as well as the rest of the workforce?

I signed myself up to transform lives and that is exactly what I would do. This was my time to inject maximum enthusiasm into these people, whether they were ready for it or not. They needed something fresh, fun and exciting.

The last thing anybody wanted to hear is the same, boring stuff that's been going around for years (and doesn't work, by the way). So it was out with "exercise more and eat less" and time to switch people's thinking to "exercise less, eat more, but do it properly". A lot more appealing!

And it worked. They completed exciting challenges, did high-energy and fun 12-minute fat-melting workouts, ate incredible meals including some of their favourites and felt more motivated than ever. The team embraced all of the information and help that I offered and the results speak for themselves.

What an amazing team! They're fitter and happier that they have been in years, and the best part is, it's a lifestyle change.

Their journeys have been nothing short of inspirational and I'm confident that their stories will help to motivate others around them, including their work colleagues.

The way the world is developing now, the chances are there may be more and more doing jobs which mean sitting at a desk and not moving, but this project has proven that you can still stay fit and healthy around it, and enjoy life more.

So it's out with the excuses and in with the movement. Excuses won't get you results.

Is My Job Killing Me? has proven that you can find the time to exercise; you can prepare meals that are cost-effective and easy to make. We'll all have times where we feel we can't be bothered, but if it doesn't challenge you it doesn't change you!

Is My Job Killing Me? is on Wednesday 9 October at 9pm on BBC One Wales.

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