The summer months saw Vijay Parekh continue his fitness journey with Preston North End Community and Education Trust via the FIT FANS programme – and with great success.
A member of the steward’s team on a matchday, Vijay enrolled on the FIT FANS programme in the summer, a 12-week fitness programme delivered at Deepdale that comprises both educational workshops and physical activity sessions, encouraging participants to make healthier lifestyle choices.
FIT FANS invites 35 to 65-year-olds, both male and female, with a BMI between 28 and 40 to embark on a health and fitness journey with the support of coaches from PNECET.
From week one to 12, Vijay lost just under 10kg in weight and six centimetres on his waist measurements, resulting in a reduced BMI.
He said: “I started my whole fitness journey before I joined FIT FANS, and this has really helped me lose weight, gain more knowledge about helping me to lose weight. It’s just been brilliant. Seeing the differences between the beginning and now, I’m really happy with it.
“Physically I’ve seen a lot of difference, mentally as well because losing weight has helped out. Mentally I feel better. I’ve gained a lot of knowledge in the sessions, which has been brilliant, just to help keep losing weight.”
The social aspect of the programme was also important for Vijay, particularly as a PNE supporter and member of the team on matchdays.
FIT FANS sees groups of 20 men and 20 women simultaneously enrolled on the programme to provide moral support for one another through like-minded individuals and fellow supporters of the club.
Vijay added: “I support Preston, work at Preston as well, which is really good, and it’s nice to see PNECET doing something like this, supporting the community. It’s nice to feel like a part of the club.
“Because you’re in a group, it helps because everyone is on the same journey. Everyone is helping each other out. We’ve got a WhatsApp group set-up so everyone can help each other and share their achievements.
“The coaches have been brilliant, because any advice that you need, they’re there for you. It’s been brilliant and the support has been massive, it’s helped out big-time.”
Recruitment is continuing for FIT FANS for our next waves of the programme in January 2022.
You can enrol by visiting efltrust.com/fitfans and selecting Preston North End as your chosen club, or find out more the programme and our other Weight Management programme offers by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.