Snooker legend John Higgins has managed to lose nearly four stone after being unhappy with his weight throughout the lockdown period.
The 46-year-old will make his eagerly anticipated return to the snooker table this weekend, as he heads to Belfast for the Northern Ireland Open where he will take on Englishman Joe O’Connor in his opening round tie on Sunday.
The four-time world champion will no doubt be heading to the Northern Ireland capital a new man following his slim down, and he revealed the main component in helping him shed the pounds was spinning sessions on his static bike.
Whilst the new fitness regime may not be helping his technical performance, Higgins admitted he has been enjoying getting into shape.
He said: “It’s not helping me pot balls but it is helping me lose weight. I just seem to be a little bit addicted to them. I go three or four times a week.
"I enjoy getting up in the morning and doing an hour of training. It will be tough because when I am starting to travel to tournaments again I will need to find some spin classes there or go on the bikes in the hotels.”
"A lot of the boys do running and that is easier. I’ll need to have a scout about different cities to see if there are any spin classes there.”
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The Scot went on to reveal the sheer extent of his weight loss since his performance at the World Championship, where he was defeated by Welshman Mark Williams 13-7 in the last 16.
Speaking about his health improvements since April he said: “I’ve lost about three and half stone. I was 15 and a half stone at the Crucible and now I’m down to about 12.
“A lot of people ask if I feel better, I don’t know. I do feel a bit better but I’ll wait and see.
"It isn’t going to be the reason I’ll pot balls better. It is for my whole wellbeing really.”
As well as for his own personal goal, Higgins went on to admit that a huge factor in getting himself into a fitter shape was his wife and children, and is now happy he is into the fitness routine.
He added: “I was too heavy for how small of a guy I am. You don’t see it in yourself. It is amazing. I couldn’t see that I was getting steadily bigger.
"You are happy with your life and who do you have to look good for? I have my wife and my kids. It is a good thing I’ve started doing it."