Who shrunk Darren Scott?

2010-11-22 12:58

Cape Town - Sport24 presents the second in a four-part exclusive extract from the no-holds barred account of Darren Scott's inspiring weight-loss journey. Written by Dan Nicholl in conjunction with trainer Lisa Raleigh, the book is filled with exercising tips, healthy diet alternatives and detailed information on discovering (and sustaining!) a healthier, trimmer body.

To this day, I’m still not entirely sure what made me respond to Lisa’s mail, what it was that caught my attention. Maybe it was the urgency of her tone. Perhaps it was a promise that didn’t come with pills or powders attached. The privacy option might have helped, I suppose, or the firm but simple nature of the mail. Or perhaps, as half a cholesterol-infested burger stared back at me, something inside clicked, and I knew that the lifestyle I was so recklessly embracing was going to bring me to an abrupt and unpleasant halt sooner rather than later. And so I responded almost immediately – I had to finish the burger first . . .

Part of me, I suppose, was curious as to what response I’d get – there was a good chance I’d put her off entirely, and even if she did pitch for the meeting, the prospect of trying to drag a smoking, drinking, fast food junkie with a figure that was just about exerting its own gravitational pull, would almost certainly make her decide that Darren Scott was a project beyond even her. Beyond anyone, really: I’d tried the pill method, I’d tried dieting, I’d flirted very occasionally with exercise, and nothing had kept my weight consistent, let alone my lifestyle healthy. In fact, every previous attempt at finding the Kate Moss inside my Kobus Wiese had been decidedly unhealthy, as Lisa’s simple, effective explanation of diet and lifestyle would later make frighteningly clear. Could this be the elusive method that would trim me down, keep my weight stable, and hold off cardiac arrest for a decade or two longer? Well, possibly, but that would mean Lisa would have to agree to take me on. The words ‘Titanic’ and ‘iceberg’ kept coming to mind . . .

But Lisa did come to the meeting, and by the time I’d finished discussing what she had in store for me, it wasn’t her who was having second thoughts. Lisa is blonde, gorgeous, and looks about as threatening as Earl Rose with ball in hand, but even during that first encounter, there were hints at the steel within. I didn’t have a clue just how evil she’d turn out to be (she works as a consultant, I have it on good authority, to the interrogation team at Guantanamo Bay), but there was a quiet determination as she discussed in broad terms how she was going to wrestle me back from the precipice I was teetering above, and there were occasional touches to her delivery of Sir Alex Ferguson addressing a losing Manchester United team at half-time. Her blunt evaluation of my physical condition wasn’t a surprise, as I’d kind of figured Men’s Health wouldn’t be putting me on a cover any time soon, but her solution wasn’t what I was expecting. No pills, no fat-trapping shakes, no vibrating belts to stretch around my belly while I lay on the couch inhaling nuggets and fried chicken. Instead, a simple combination of diet and exercise, and a platform of self-discipline. Nothing more.

As Lisa left, and I ordered a toasted sandwich to supplement the chicken salad I’d ordered for her benefit, I ran through what she’d offered me, and whether it was something I really wanted to do. I had a pretty good life, juggling radio, television and events, and having a lot of fun behaving like a well-paid university student. But the manic lifestyle was taking its toll, and committed as I was to trying it out, salvation wasn’t going to come from McDonald’s. And while taking on a project as substantial as getting myself into shape – and under Lisa’s uncompromising conditions – didn’t at first seem like the solution for someone with little enough free time anyway. Yet, the focus and direction of the regime offered the chance to add some structure to my crazy days, and the idea of turning into a leaner, meaner Darren, ready for anything, was an appealing thought. I could already envision the six-pack and Speedo on the beach . . .

But two simple decisions made me follow through on the agreement I’d given Lisa to embark on the crusade to save me. The first was the acceptance that I was starting to look like Eddie Murphy’s title character in The Nutty Professor, and so no amount of self-denial could cover the fact that I was dangerously unhealthy. That needed to change, and change fast. And then there was the challenge. Anyone stupid enough to accept a daily breakfast and drive radio show on different stations in different cities, and then try and do television as well, probably needs his head examined; I won’t disagree with that, but I’m a natural workaholic, and the more challenging an opportunity, the more I gravitate towards it. Turning my lifestyle around in a matter of months was akin to Ozzie Osbourne trying to become a monk, but I was determined to do it, and so Lisa’s challenge was accepted. I lit another Marlboro to celebrate.

*Extracted from No Fries on Us by Dan Nicholl (Penguin Books). Available at all leading bookstores countrywide.

Look out for part three of Sport24's exclusive extract on Tuesday, November 23.

Darren Scott is SuperSport's prime studio anchor for rugby, and daily prime time radio host on Jacaranda FM and East Coast Radio.

Lisa Raleigh is a passionate lifestyle and wellness espect and trainer on
The Biggest Loser South Africa.

Dan Nicholl is an MC, broadcaster, writer and CEO of Skududu Media.

Order your copy HERE

Click HERE to stand a chance of winning one of five signed copies of the book


  • Greegs - 2010-11-22 13:21

    Gotta admit that Scotty is looking good and probably feeling great! Well done Darren

  • Lionel - 2010-11-22 13:27

    Good on you Darren, now you just have to work on improving your personality and your over the top patriotism for the country and the Springboks, which sometimes is enough to make one puke on Boots & All.

  • OllieMor - 2010-11-22 13:46

    Goodness. Then he's fat, then he's promoting fatloss products. Then he's fat again, then he's promoting something else. Who gives a crap?!

      judymz - 2010-11-22 14:20

      I was just thinking that...wasn't he endorsing a weight loss product not so long ago? I would have thought by now people would be bored of Darren Scott. If this joyous snippet from the book is anything to go by then no thanks...

  • Superdude - 2010-11-22 13:54

    It wasnt too long agao that Darren took on the appearance of a fat old crocodile - looking back at TV viewers through unhealthy, yellow slitty eyes. So good job on the health kick.

  • Mike Webber - 2010-11-22 13:58

    Hmmm, Lisa's a hottie, just hope we don't hear any dodgy stories in the future about Darren and Lisa ... We've had enough of those for one year.

  • Crispy_Duck - 2010-11-22 14:12

    It just shows what happens when you stop snorting copious quantities of coke up your trunk...

      skywalker - 2010-11-23 08:21

      Yep....the coke and whiskey diet leads to the Maradonna effect.

      chunkyme - 2011-09-08 13:39

      crispy_duck, that's a low blow, what do you do!!!!!

  • sqc - 2010-11-22 14:19

    Why is this of any news to us?

      pointblankza - 2010-11-22 16:19

      SO why take the time to reply idiot.

      mr.clever.pete - 2010-11-22 16:40

      @pointblankza: to make the point that is totally pointless, just like my reply to yours in reply to his in reply to the pointless article about the pointless n'th attempt at weight loss of yet another b-grade za celeb, get it?

  • judymz - 2010-11-22 14:29

    Wasn't he endorsing another weight loss product not so long ago? Darren Scott is so boring I'm surprised anyone cares anymore. If this snippet is anything to go by then no thanks...

  • Willie - 2010-11-22 16:12

    Can we club together to buy a copy for Kobus Wiese?

      Pieter - 2010-11-22 22:17

      yes cobus is def in need of a weight loss program..

  • mr.clever.pete - 2010-11-22 16:37

    Darren Scott has been losing weight ever since his liverspotted face first appeared on radio, maybe he just talks so much "you know what" that his constipation problems have resolved the weight problems

  • g.mcheath - 2010-11-22 18:43

    To Lisa Lisa Raleigh : I was always a healthy fanatic, but unfortunately had a car accident quiet a few years ago. This has left me with partial pyralysis on my right side. My concern is, that I can not find 1 book / article, where limited exercise programs are suggested for the disabled. A large amount, if not all focus is directed at the people who are physically healthy and able to cycle, run ect. With my matabolism slowing due to retiring from sport 7 days a week, and of course not to mention the age (47), are you able to give me advise to loose weight, or will I get it all from your book No Fries on us. At present I must admit, that my ideal weight is 80 kg, but I presently weigh a disgusting 114kg. Sorry I am a male. Having mentioned the above, Darren (remember I'm male) but you look great mate and certainly a lot healther mate. Lisa obviously did magic with you. Keep it up.

  • james.santam - 2010-11-22 19:08

    Give him a year or so and he'll be as fat as ever. He's like Oprah in some ways. Darren Schwab sure looks like a praying mantis now with his big mandible and small body and shoulders. What gets me is how on earth do supersport get an such an obese unsportsmanlike individual to present sport on TV even if he has temporarily lost weight. Surely it would server the image of sport better to have a truly sporty person to present sport instead of Darren Schwab who grapples with his obesity issues???

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