My body and how I want it to be

I’m pretty comfortable with my body – extremely comfortable really.  I am lucky to have been pretty healthy my entire life and had the opportunity and inclination to exercise and participate in sports.

However over time everyone’s metabolism slows and we are inclined to put on weight. I’m no exception and it’s something that I have worked hard at over the years to manage.

Another aspect that I wasn’t expecting is that in recent times I have developed a lot more upper body mass – muscle.  When I was in my thirties I was always lean and very light.  It was a real advantage for me when I was rock climbing on faces that were not an overhang (where absolute strength really comes into play and having a low centre of gravity isn’t so important).  It was also good for me when I was cycling and running.

Then about ten years ago for no reason that I know of my body decided that upper body muscle was new goal and my shoulders and arms filled out.  I’ll never be “big” like some men are, which I’m very happy about honestly, but I’m a lot more solid and stronger than I once was.

The last few years of physical work required by the business that I started during the pandemic has only built on those gains and I have to say that I remain very happy with my body in general.

However.  I am not overly happy with my bodies more recent propensity to build up it’s fat reserves.  So it’s time for some directed action to reverse the trend.

As someone who is tall and relatively broad, I can put on ten kilograms and it is not particularly noticeable, which is a trap.  It’s easy to ignore how my body is changing, especially since it’s only gradual.  But enough is enough.  It’s time for action.

I’m not going to tell anyone how to lose weight.  Your personal history, medical issues, food culture that you grew up with etc are all going to effect what does and doesn’t work for you – this isn’t medical advice of any sort!  For me what I know is this: carbohydrates are my enemy – and as someone who loves few things more than rice, pasta, potatoes (in all their forms), and bread (I literally ran a bakery once), that’s a real blow.

I know that if I am going to lose some weight and keep it off then I need to be significantly reducing, or better yet eliminating carbohydrates from my diet.

So that’s what I’ve done. Along with reducing my eating to two meals per day, implementing intermittent fasting (I eat my two meals at 1.00pm and 5.00pm), increasing my exercise, increased my water intake, and supplementing electrolytes, magnesium (which I’m always low on and leads to muscle fatigue), B group vitamins, and a multi-vitamin.

Here’s what’s happened so far:

  • I’m not hungry between meals
  • I had headaches for the first couple of days.  Adding the electrolytes, and B group vitamins fixed that
  • I don’t have any cravings for sweet things.  In fact I don’t have any cravings at all and when I get to a meal time I’m still not hungry
  • When I exercise I have a lot more energy.  I typically swim 1000 meters two or three times per week and feel exhausted afterwards. This week I’ve consistently swum 1500 meters and get out feeling like I could do the same again.  I’m also walking fifteen kilometers per day rather than my usual nine – and still feeling fine afterwards
  • And the result in terms of my weight: I’m down by 1.5 kilograms.

More importantly though I can see the change in my body when I look in the mirror and I like where it’s going.  To anyone reading this – please don’t feel that this post is making any demands on you.  It’s nothing more than my personal journey to reach a body shape that I am happy with that lets me do the things that I want to do.  I see women of all shapes and sizes and I enjoy all of your bodies!

I hope that for anyone undertaking, or considering their own weight loss journey that it might be helpful and provide some inspiration.

John

At my daggy best!

Finding myself in Sydney on Monday (a rarity for me, as I’m usually down in the Southern Highlands for the first few days each week) I decided to go for a walk. Headphones to listen to an audio book and my favourite walking shorts – little did I know that somewhere along that 10km walk the entire crotch of my shorts would disintegrate! Luckily I was wearing black underwear. Anyway – now I need some new shorts!

John

The benefits of manual labour are underrated

Due to spending too much time lifting heavy things when I was a child growing up on my family’s farm I have had a life time of lower back pain.  Soft bones and too much heavy work don’t mix (which is why we have child labour laws!) and the result for me is disks that are not as thick as they should be, potentially leading to nerves being pinched, sciatica, back pain, incapacity – the list goes on.

After a particularly bad episode in 2015 I discovered that the extra core strength gained from swimming was very helpful, it reduced flair-ups and kept me mobile and mostly pain free.  That was a remarkable discovery.  However it never solved the problem entirely and I still needed regular massage and still had occasional bouts of crippling lower back pain.

That was until during the pandemic.  When I couldn’t do sex work I started a little business allied to construction work (which I could legally go out to do).  At the time it was literally just something I could do to stay busy and bring in some income, but I soon realised that the physical labour involved in loading up and unloading my machines and the physical work itself had an unexpected benefit: it fixed my lower back problem.  Completely.  Not just improved it or lessened the occurrences but fixed it entirely.

The core strength that I get from lifting loading ramps, and tools, “active” sitting on machines, and doing the inevitable bit of hand work required like swinging a crowbar gives me enough core stability that the pressure is taken off the nerves in my lower back and I can live and work pain free for the first time in over twenty years.

Culturally, in Australia “manual labour” is seen as being “less” when compared to professions that require formal education.  And it’s true that working with your hands for a living isn’t going to pay like being a doctor, banker, or consultant of some kind, but there is a lot to be said for honest labour with tangible outcomes *and* the strength and fitness that comes from it – and ultimately for me the physical wellbeing and lack of back pain that I derive from it.

I spend about half of my time each week in Sydney as a sex worker and the other half out of town helping people build their dreams.  Two very different trades, but ultimately one supports the other and I am very glad that I made this discovery. I’m a better sex worker for also doing the manual labour – and I don’t have to go to the gym to build a few extra muscles (if you like that sort of thing)!

John

I don’t think this is going to work out…

Recently a new hair dresser opened conveniently close to my place. Great! I thought, no more need to go over to Rhodes and do battle with the shopping centre.

Now over the years I have learned that although “short” hair is very convenient, cool in summer, and all round easy, it just doesn’t suit me the way that letting it grow out a bit and curl up does.

Well, the first time I had a hair cut at the new place I thought to myself “I just didn’t give him clear enough instructions”. He made it really short despite me saying “just a trim, leave it over my ears please” – which is normally enough to let an experienced hair dresser know what you want.

The second time I was much more clear: “Last time was too short, I want it over my ears and long enough to curl up please”. What I got made me look something like Beaker from The Muppets.

This time I was really, really explicit: “I want it at least a centimeter over my ears please”. I have come to realise that this hairdresser takes anything less than “short back and sides” as a personal affront.

So I give up. I guess I’ll be going back to Rhodes in the future…

John

Why I generally don’t do link swaps

I don’t generally do “link swaps” and the like on my website.  Networking is great for generating traffic to your website, but I am always wary of endorsing other people who I don’t know and trust.

I recently received an invitation to swap links with a site and I was, as always, cautious about it.  I spent some time looking over the site and while the content was, on the whole, ok, and purported to be the site of a woman who specialised in sexuality and relationships, it left me feeling like it was just a whole lot of middle of the road articles about sexuality with some occasional BDSM et al spicy stuff thrown in.

I didn’t get the feeling that the site was actually written by one person. More that it was a bunch of sexy stuff, designed to be a little bit titillating without risking anything, that had no personal voice.

I’m pretty sure that the purported owner didn’t write the content. And that’s a problem for me. There was no personal voice. No consistent narrative or view coming through. Just generic “feel good” vibes about sex. A site designed perhaps to drive views and clicks for advertisers rather than to give you real information. And I don’t want to be sending people who read my website to another site just so that they can be “monetised”…

If you have read much of my content then you can probably understand why this would not sit well with me. In everything that I write for this website I try be honest and direct about who I am and what my values are. Some people will like my values, some people won’t – and I think that’s a great way to help anyone thinking about booking me to make the right decision for them.

A website that tries to please everyone so that it can get maximum views rather than provide the best information is not one that I am going to promote. I try to put my readers’ and clients’ best interests ahead of commercialism.

John.

Sex workers need to be resilient AND fragile

I watched an interview with director Guillermo del Toro the other day and listening to his description of what it takes to be a director resonated with me as a sex worker.

You can see the interview here:

It may seem like a strange comparison, but I think that his first point is spot on – you have to be both resilient and fragile.

In the case of directing film and television a director has to be able to deal with the business of making a film – wrangling crew and equipment, dealing with producers etc.  For sex workers, we need to do the job of making the booking happen for our client – organising hotels, travel, safer sex material like condoms and lube, our clothing, hygiene, regular STI testing.  The list goes on.  There are lots of practicalities, large and small, that we have to stay on top of, all to make sure that when the moment arrives that we meet our clients that we can – as del Toro puts it – “be fragile”.

For a director that means being able to work with their actors (and crew), be sensitive to their needs and to the story.  To empathise and to give them what they need to be able to give their best performance.

For a sex worker, we need to be emotionally available, receptive, and responsive to our client’s needs.  Some people need their sex worker to be kind and compassionate.  To listen and empathise, to be gentle and caring.  Others need us to challenge and excite.  And many variations between. 

We live and work in a strange place of real emotions and responses in a setting where we are being paid for our time. There are inherent contradictions in that situation, but it can’t be faked – especially for a male sex worker for women. This may in part be the reason that there are so few of us that are able to do the job at all, let alone stay in the industry in the long term.

Women want sex just as much as men, so there is plenty of demand for my time and my colleges in the industry. As men we may be good at doing the “resilient” part – but it’s the “fragile” moments that we need to be ready to give to the women who book our services. It’s the fragile moments that make the experience real.

John.

Farewell 2020, hello 2021

I really hope that 2021 be a better year for all of us!

I’m sorry that I have not been posting regularly here, but you know – 2020…

Seriously though, it was a long year with a lot of personal challenges on top of the insanity of covid-19. Thank you to everyone who booked with me last year, for your support. That made it much easier than it could have been.

I am now back at work after a few weeks off and looking forward to meeting new people and renewing my connection with those I already know.

For anyone who may be wondering – I recently closed down my Twitter account. It had served its purpose (supporting and advocating for the sex work industry) at a time where it was under serious threat in Australia, so it was no-longer needed. I will continue to post here however.

So I want to wish everyone well and I look forward to hearing from you in the future!

John.