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Health & Fitness: Father ditched 'dad bod' by exercising with newborn - and wins body building prize

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Sion Monty before and after shedding his 'dad bod' (Image: SWNS) © Provided by South Wales Argus Sion Monty before and after shedding his 'dad bod' (Image: SWNS)

A FATHER who piled on the pounds when his son was born ditched his 'dad bod' by exercising with his newborn - and has now won a medal at a national bodybuilding competition.

Sion Monty, 35, piled on four stone in just six months after son Tedi was born, while he got to grips with being a dad at the same time as running three businesses.

Then nearly 16st, he vowed to lose the weight - and involved his son in his exercise regime by doing daily runs, hill sprints and long walks with Tedi in his pram.

But thanks to a diet overhaul and exercising six days a week, he lost nearly four stone, supported or his lad, now five, and proud partner Kara Williams, 31.

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He took it one step further and took up bodybuilding, gaining muscle and working on his six pack.

And in November 2022 he scored a silver medal in National Amateur Body-Builders' Association UK open.

He said the secret was mindfulness and manifestation - he reads a lot of books about having a positive "growth mindset", self-belief and speaking things into existence.

Sion now helps change the lives of other dads who find themselves stuck in a rut with their body image by offering one-on-one coaching and sharing his tips on social media.

Sion works out five times a week and controls his calorie intake but insists the key to physical transformation is inner peace after struggling with anxiety.

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Sion, a gym owner, from Porthmadog, Wales, said: "I piled on the pounds in the first six months my son was born.

"Tedi, my partner, Kara and I took a photo in a photo booth, and I saw myself for the first time since Tedi was born.

"I felt ashamed and shocked as I owned a gym and had let myself go.

"It gave me the kick up the a*** to get back into fitness.

"Now I'm so happy and a much more active dad to Tedi.

"I just want to inspire him and show him anything is possible."

Sion - who weighed 16st - shredded the pounds and transformed his physique. He now tips the scales at 12st and has a chiselled physique.

He kept up his fitness and since bought a new gym, Musclemorph gym, Gwynedd, Wales, which he says, "manifested into existence".

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Sion said: "I read loads of books on mindfulness, and I make affirmations in the morning.

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"I say what I want to achieve for the day and set clear goals.

"I used to pass this building every day and say to my partner that would be an amazing building for a gym and I thought that will be my gym.

"I envisioned it as my gym every day and crazily enough I got a call to say the building had become available."

According to the fitness fanatic, another tenant secured the building, but he kept believing he would get the premises and he miraculously got the keys in December 2019.

Sadly, a month after opening in February 2020 Sion had to close the gym in March 2020 for lockdown.

He said: "It was really hard, but I used that time to help others.

"I put on a bit of weight, so I documented my 'fat loss' phase on Instagram for others to see and started doing at-home workouts.

"I help a lot of dads and men from all over the world come to me for help.

"They just want to get healthy for their kids."

Little Tedi is now following in the footsteps of his dad and loves coming to the gym every Sunday to have a mini workout.

Sion ensures his weekends are committed to his family and fits in his workouts at 4.30am Monday to Friday before they wake up.

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"Family time is non-negotiable, and I prioritise Kara and Tedi," he said.

"I eat normally I just make sure I watch my calories, so I don't get cravings - it's more sustainable."

When Sion was losing weight for his fitness competition earlier in the month - to weigh in at 12st 13lbs - he limited his diet to 1,800 calories a day.

But now he is 'bulking' - gaining muscle so he will eat 2,500 calories a day.

Despite being fitter than ever, he owes feeling better than ever to his mind.

He said: "I've suffered from anxiety for many years, but I feel the best I’ve ever felt - not because of fitness regiment, but through my mind and practices.

"We should work as much on the mind as we do on the body."

Diet before:

Breakfast - Four rounds of peanut butter on toast

Lunch - Takeaway from deli - baguette, pastry, cakes and crisps

Dinner - Takeaway of Chinese food, chip shop or Indian food. If food was home cooked it had a side of chips and garlic bread. Pudding of Magnum ice cream.

Diet now:

5am: Workout

7am: White chocolate, banana & peanut butter protein shake

9am: Chocolate protein oats, & some fruit (berries usually)

12pm: Chicken Katsu curry & rice, with veg

Mid afternoon: protein bar

5:30pm: Chicken sausages, jacket potato & cheese, tenderstem broccoli

8pm: White chocolate & peanut butter protein shake

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