TOM Tilley spends his day trying to help young Australians tackle issues such as body image as host of Triple J’s cult current affairs program Hack.
It’s one of the biggest issues Tom and the show has dealt with in recent times.
“In the social media age, looks seem to have become more important. There are more people to compare yourself to, which puts young people under stress about how they look and how they compare to other people,” Tilley said.
“For a lot of people now fitness is how sexy you look in your active-wear and how many Instagram likes you can get when you post a pic of yourself working out.
“People have wanted to look good since human beings were first invented and it can be a good thing. It often shows that you are healthy, so it is important, but you have to strike the right balance.”
“Being healthy is as much about how you feel as what you look like so people need to feel supported so they don’t get that balance completely out of kilter, and hopefully the right message is slowly getting out there.”
The Hack team has been doing its bit to raise awareness with campaigns such as; “No Body’s Perfect” and “Body Obsession”.
But Tilley doesn’t just talk the talk. His own focus is on training to get the most out of life and being healthy, rather than on comparing himself with others.
“I want to work hard and challenge myself in all the things I do, whether it’s radio, TV or touring in my band and unless you are feeling motivated and fit, you end up losing focus. So for me health and fitness is about feeling great so I can do what I want to do.”
Fast Five with Tom Tilley
Play like a kid
LIKE many Australians, Tilley spent his twenties treating his body like an amusement park.
“I got into socialising and partying and my career and it wasn’t until I moved into the late twenties and beyond that I started to get interested in exercise again,” he said.
Instead of struggling to find motivation to hit the gym, Tilley simply picked up where he left off as a teenager.
“I went back to the sports I loved in high school and re-explored them. I used to do swimming club, so I got back in the pool to swim laps, and got back on the bike and things like that. It was kind of nice to go back to a teenage mentality where you get out there and attack things and push yourself,” he said.
Not only is reconnecting with your inner child a smart and easy way to get fit, but Tilley has also found it helps him to function at his peak.
“Two or three times a week I get up early and ride from Redfern down to Bondi, and swim at Icebergs before work,” Tilley said.
“By the time you get to the office you feel like you’ve achieved something already. The blood’s pumping through the body and the brain and you’ve kicked your day off.”
WITH a busy schedule and no ambitions to move into food blogging, Tilley’s Achilles heel is his diet.
“Food is a weak point for me. I live in a share house with my mates; you’ll often be cooking on your own or for one other person so sometimes the economy of scale just isn’t there. And you can get cheap, sometimes healthy takeaway options so often I end up falling back on that.”
While his focus is on healthy takeaway food, Tilley’s goal this year is to pick up his eating habits and do a bit more cooking.
“I’ve just started to get back into it slowly. The dish I’ve come back to is roast chicken with a roast veggie salad. It’s wholesome, easy to cook and versatile.”
Fast Five with Tom Tilley
Favourite healthy food
Favourite unhealthy food
A really cheesy lasagne
Drink of choice
Baileys with milk on ice
Client Liaison — which I happen to be part of!
Reconnect with a sport you loved as a kid