Duncan Gillies Jnr talks candidly on how he transformed his life with a healthier diet and exercise routine and how it inspired him to become a ForestryFit fitness coach with a focus on forestry.

In 2019, I found myself overweight, unfit, and discontented. I felt lost, lacking inspiration, having attempted countless times to shape up, only to tumble off the wagon weeks or months later, slipping back into my old ‘all or nothing’ mindset—a mentality that never served me well in any aspect of life.

During that time, I was working away and managed to get some cheap digs in a hotel. My routine began at 3am, grabbing a coffee and a couple of complimentary packs of shortbread before heading out to spend a few early hours on the harvester before the other operator’s shift began. Later, I’d return to the hotel, indulging in a full Scottish breakfast, then

back out for a day of brashing and felling. After a strenuous day, a two-course dinner and a couple of pints felt like the ideal woodcutter’s evening. The catch? Unbeknown to me, the pounds were creeping on.

The wake-up call came unexpectedly while I was at my folks’ one Sunday afternoon, sifting through old photos. It hit me how much weight I’d put on—not just my belly but my face, neck, arms, you name it. Though I kept it to myself, that moment became my turning point; I knew I needed help, a coach.

Finding a Glasgow-based specialist catering to busy dads was my saving grace. I reached out and never looked back.

Staying in a caravan a couple of hours away, I became my coach’s first ‘wood tink,’ presenting a multitude of obstacles for him to navigate. From financial strains and deadlines to the lack of space, equipment, or time, the odds seemed stacked against us. Yet, we persisted, utilising whatever was at hand—even resorting to pull-ups in the pouring rain, hanging from a deer carcass pole! I’d prepaid for the program and was determined not to give up this time.

Reflecting back, I stayed the course because I had someone in my corner, someone to whom I was accountable, someone who led by example. Months in, about halfway through the program, I found myself taking a topless photo in the caravan mirror—a testament to my progress. For once, I felt proud of my discipline; my confidence was soaring—an incredible feeling.


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By 2020, the seed had been planted; a passion to assist other busy men stuck in the grind of modern life had taken root. I made a bold move, retraining as a fitness coach, transforming my garage into a fully equipped gym. I started training family and friends, gaining vital 1-1 experience.
For over a year now, I’ve conducted numerous sessions, aiding people in shedding fat, gaining muscle, and fostering unshakeable confidence. While I remain dedicated to this service, something was missing—my vision to assist fellow forestry workers in becoming their best selves.

Thus, ForestryFit was born! A tailored training program designed for individuals in the forestry industry, based on the principle of limited equipment, space, and time. Quick, engaging, and effective, it promises lasting, inspiring results. My goal: shift the perception that sedentary workers are overweight and sluggish, proving that one can look and feel incredible without extreme dieting.

Now with consistent daily habits, adhered to 80% of the time, everything else falls into

place naturally. It’s not about flawlessness; it’s about striving to be 1% better than yesterday. Perfection isn’t the goal—we’re all human, after all.

If you’re ready to embark on a journey toward a slimmer, happier, and more confident ‘Dad’ that your kids will be proud of, follow the link below. Get a free copy of my ‘5 Step Fat Loss’ guide and my ‘4-Week Kick Starter’ workout program, providing you with ample tools to kickstart your transformation. You’ll also receive updates on ForestryFit and be the first to know when it launches!

Get some great dietary and fitness tips from Duncan on his social media pages,

Facebook; ForestryFit


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Forest Machine Magazine is written and edited by a forest professional with over 40 years hands on experience. We are dedicated to keeping you informed with all the latest news, views and reviews from our industry.

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