Luke’s Story

Luke Jones Health Room

Thanks for stopping by.

I’m Luke Jones – Content Creator, Personal Trainer & Chief Burrito Eater.

The short story:

Here at Health Room, I spend my time exploring and sharing ideas in the things that fascinate me. Usually things related to movement, nutrition, habits, mindfulness, entrepreneurship, and everything in between. The big cheesy goal is to help you (and myself) develop habits and routines that allow you to live the life you want to live.

To help you unleash your inner HERO.

But it wasn’t always that way. Not all that long ago I was a stressed out uni student with a few niggling health issues, and no idea where I wanted to be in life (let alone how to get there).

Feel free to scroll on down to hear the longer version.

What I’m up to right now

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Early Days

I was born in a small town in South Wales, close to the mountains but not too far from the city. I was lucky to be brought up with a loving family and a great group of friends.

Sport was always a big part of my life growing up. Football was the main one; I loved it, and played as much as I could. Cricket was another, although it’s safe to say I didn’t love it quite as much. I dabbled in athletics too, mainly focussing on jumping over poles, sandpits and hurdles.

I became hooked on martial arts when I was around 14, beginning with Tang Soo Do. At around 17 I discovered MMA, and got really into Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and Thai Boxing too.

In my mid teens, my journey into the whole fitness and health world really began. I became really interested in strength training and nutrition, and how they could affect how I performed as an athlete.

I felt at the time that it was something I wanted to make a career out of in the future, but didn’t really know how.

In the meantime, I was working hard at school, and ended up getting accepted to Imperial College in London to study Geology and Earth Sciences. At the time I really had no idea what Imperial was, had never really heard of it. But it turned out it was one of the best places in the world to study that sort of thing.

It seemed like a degree that could lead to lots of opportunities at the end, so I thought I’d go for it.

 

The Tipping Point

Uni was a big change for me, and I struggled with it – the move to the big city, the workload, and the different people. I’ve always been pretty introverted, so didn’t embrace the lifestyle of partying and drinking. Making friends during the early stages wasn’t too easy…

I also had no idea what a pegmatite was, or when the KT boundary occurred, so academically I always felt a few big steps behind everyone on my course.

Instead, I found comfort in my training, which I threw myself into. I began Thai boxing, tried my hand at judo for a couple of years, and trained BJJ religiously at the Carlson Gracie London BJJ Academy.

Football, interval training, running, climbing, swimming, gymnastics, strength training; anything to keep me moving and pre-occupied. It was almost an addiction, and my philosophy was always to go until I could no more.

Go hard or go home.

This no pain no gain approach sounds pretty cool, but only works for so long.

I was struggling with the uni workload, and the feeling that I should be doing something else with my life was growing.

I just didn’t feel true to myself. Combine this looming worry with the constant punishment my body was being put under, an acidic high protein diet, and a total disregard for rest and recovery; eventually something’s gonna give.

I’d had issues with mouth ulcers since my late teens, but these got a whole load worse at uni, sometimes to the point where I would be unable to eat. I was also constantly tired and getting digestive issues, along with niggling injuries and back problems.

The warning of adrenal fatigue signs were all there, but I was too stubborn to stop and listen to my body.

In early December 2012, I received a set of blood test results that suggested the likely possibility of Crohn’s disease. Although there was never an official diagnosis, the doctors were quite happy to offer me a cocktail of different pills and potions.

That was a big wake up call.

Perhaps a little naively, I decided that the pills and potions were not for me, and that I would solve this health thing on my own.

That’s where my fascination with health and habit changing went to a whole new level.

 

Habit Changing

As I said, health and nutrition was a big focus of mine, even whilst I was supposed to be busy learning about rocks.

My diet had been evolving and changing over the years (and continues to today), from one full of protein shakes, eggs and meat; to being based on whole, nutrient dense plant foods; fruit and vegetables, nuts, seeds, whole-grains and legumes.

On that day in December, after receiving the blood test results and recently finishing the book Finding Ultra by Rich Roll, I decided to make the switch to a whole-food plant based diet.

The benefits were by no means instant, but over time my symptoms became less severe, and my energy levels began to rise.

I realised too that the diet acted as a catalyst for many of the other habit changes I was able to make. It allowed me to think out of the box, and consider alternative ways of living.

I changed the way I trained, swapping the go hard or go home approach for something a bit more intuitive back and tactical. I visited a chiropractic clinic. I adjusted my posture. I started practicing yoga and meditation. I read a lot more on personal development.

I really set out on this journey of discovering myself, and finding my place in the world.

Like most people who try to make a lot of changes at once, I definitely struggled. But my reason why was powerful, and it helped me stumble forward. Through trail and error and lots of mistakes, I learnt a few techniques to develop lasting, sustainable habits, rather than ones that fizzle out after a couple of weeks.

Through the struggle, I also I figured out what my values were, and decided that I needed to carve a career that was true to them, rather than following the safe option after university.

The idea of Health Room became firmly planted in my mind, and continued to grow.

 

The Birth of Health Room

As university drew to a close, I had the spare time needed to focus even more on improving my health and creating my future.

I decided that the traditional Earth Science careers were not for me. They didn’t resonate with me at all. Not one bit.

So after a few months of resting, learning, and finishing off a Diploma in Human Nutrition,  I decided to create Health Room, and I threw myself into creating content.

It started out mainly as a way for me to explore and share ideas that I’m passionate about, and if others could learn from my experience and mistakes, then that would be an added bonus.

Now the message is similar, but my focus is a little more outwards.

I’ve always liked the idea that you can become the hero of your own story. And that’s what I want to get across to you guys – you can empower yourself and make the changes you want to make, to get to where you want to be.

Today, the blog reaches more people than I could ever have imagined, and it continues to grow. For that I’m truly grateful.

I’m certainly no expert, and I make loads of mistakes. But I’m always trying my best to keep moving forward with an open mind and provide useful content.

The blog really helps me keep on track, and provides me with a sense of purpose. I hope that it might help you too in some shape or form, small or big.

 

Health Room and Beyond

One thing that I’ve learned since starting this site is that if you trust in your instincts, follow your passion, and put in the hard work, opportunities will spring up. 

Since starting Health Room back in 2013, I have been lucky enough to publish articles for Mind Body GreenTiny Buddha, No Meat AthleteTeen VGN, and Natural News.

Moving forward, I also have opportunities for magazine articles, freelance projects, expos and collaboration projects with some pretty cool people and companies.

It really is an honour to be a part of this community, and I couldn’t wish for anything more.

As cliché as it sounds, if you really have a powerful ‘why’, the opportunities will arise to help you to move in that direction. You’ve just gotta make sure you put in the work, push the boundaries of your comfort zone, and say ‘yes’ to the things that scare you.

I’m excited to see where this is leading, and thanks for joining me on the journey!

Personal Training and Online Coaching

In August 2016 I qualified as a Personal Trainer with the Fitness Factory Academy, based in Cardiff.

This was a step I’d wanted to take for a long time, and eventually plucked up the courage to do so.

As well as working face to face with individuals and groups, I’m now offering Online Personal Training and Nutrition Consultations.

Get in touch or check out the HERO Store for more info.

The HERO Podcast

The latest step on the journey…

Again, this is something I’ve been wanting to do for quite some time, and finally it’s a reality.

The HERO Podcast is essentially an extension of the other work I do here at Health Room. It’s a weekly show where I explore and share ideas in healthy living, human performance, and lifestyle design. Everything from eating well and moving mindfully to carving out your dream career.

Through essay style monologs, long-form interviews, and actionable tips, the aim is to help you develop the habits & routines that allow you to reach your goals and become the best version of you.

Ultimately, so you can unlock your potential, and unleash your inner HERO.

Subscribe (and maybe even leave a short review) below:

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24 Responses to “Luke’s Story

  • That’s great, I love learning about natural health and nutrition and really respect your views!

  • Thank you for sharing your story. You are really inspiring. I am like you was lead on this journey due to an illness (not chron’s, but chronic headaches), I am also not healed but I am learning along the way and embracing the journey. It is a beautiful journey. 🙂 You said that you want to make a career out of this – are you thinking on career in blogging in nutrition or being a nutritionist (since you have a degree in it) or a health coach (like me :P) or what do you have in mind? There are so many possibilities and so much need for all this. With such an awesome start like this blog, I am sure you will be amazing it whatever you end up doing 🙂

  • Hot green tea, Jasmine, and black coffee are two of my favorite healthy items I drink a fair amount of. I can see you are a very disciplined person, and that will continue to help you. I enjoyed your site and plan to be back.

  • Thanks for following my blog Luke! With your nutritional training do you recommend any range of products over another? Blessings Joy x

    • Hi Joy!

      At the moment I don’t really recommend any products or supplements. Although they can definitely be useful, my philosophy is to mainly focus on whole plant foods, and I’d like to do a little bit more reading before I start advising people.

      Having said that, personally I use an organic freeze dried greens powder from time to time, and take vitamin B12 and D sprays.

      Your story is really fascinating. I’ve been interested in chiropractic for the past couple of years, and experienced some of its amazing benefits first hand. I really believe that it will play a massive role in future of healthcare, and would like to be involved with it somewhere down the line.

  • I am fully impressed with what you have achieved so far in your life (don’t you just love those “bricks to the head” that motivate you to make changes?)
    Your switch to plant-based eating will significantly lower your risk of cancer and other chronic illnesses, so you’re truly on your way! Congrats and I look forward to following your journey!

  • Luke, thanks for checking out our Three’s Cooking blog and leaving us your contact information. I think you’re doing great work here, so I’m featuring you on our blog tomorrow. Namaste!

  • I’m vegetarian for the simple reason that I came to the point, 2–3 years ago, that I could no longer tolerate the concept of killing animals to eat them. I’m a widow whose husband was a brilliant cook and who’s had to teach herself to do it. Being honest, I’m not into the spirituality of veganism, Luke; butI will very happily – and with gratitude! – follow your blog as long as it doesn’t require me to be … what? – obsessive. And I’m not trying to be rude, I promise! (I found you through Chris Donner’s blog, Three’s Cooking, as per the comment she’s left above.)

  • Thanks for checking out my blog. I’m definitely a big health fan and think what you are doing is great 🙂

  • Luke, Thank you for ‘liking’ one of my recent posts and deciding to follow my blog. I enjoyed yours as well, especially the post describing the benefits of longer, slower runs. I am an on/off again jogger – looking for inspiration to be on again. I think your blog did the trick! Thank you, and be blessed in your continued journey to healing.

    • HealthRoom
      3 years ago

      Thank you Jenny, keep up the great work! Good luck on your health journey!

  • Hey Luke. Cheers for following my blog 🙂 Great to read your story and connect with others sharing similar views. Will look forward to reading your posts. April

  • Hi there! I’m hoping to send some sunshine your way by nominating you for The Sunshine Award! Your blog has been inspiring and encouraging to me. Thanks for sharing your story! Just click on this link to see what you need to do, if you choose to accept this award: http://wp.me/p2QS1L-au. Hope you have a sunshiney day! 🙂

  • A fellow earth scientist, track and fielder, yogi AND plant based eater. Wow! Really enjoyed reading your story and look forward to hearing more about your evolving health journey.

    • Yeah, we’re not all that common haha!

      Thanks Jennie, and keep up the great work on the blog. Really like the way you write, resonates with me a lot!

      Luke

  • Hi Luke! I’d like to thank you very much for stopping by my blog and for the follow. Your blog and story are very inspiring. Looking forward to follow your blog and learn (and learn, and learn…) from you. 🙂

  • Hi Luke, thanks for following my blog! I guess we’re on a similiar path right now so I am looking forward to read your posts! 🙂

  • Hello Luke, how wonderful all what you have overcome and achieved. Geology is fascinating!. Glad to hear you are a martial artist, too. BJJ and Thai boxing are great. I have been training martail arts for 40 years now. My focus for decades was Karate Shotokan; then, I added Iaido (Japanese swordsmanship), Kendo (Japanese fencing in armour), Kyudo (Japanese archery), Kenjutsu (earlier form of swordsmanship) and Ju-Jitsu. All vegan power 🙂

    I enjoy your writing style and your approach, all is very inspiring, thank you!.

    • Hi Carmen!

      Really cool to hear you’re a martial artist! I’ve always been interested in the japanese sword styles, definitely something I’d like to give a go at some point!

      Thanks for stopping by, and keep up the great work on your site!

      Luke

  • Virginia Pérez
    2 years ago

    Hi!
    This is Virginia, from Spain. I just found out your site and I’ve been exploring it. I find it very important for me, as new vegetarian and also having Crohn’s. I am trying to become vegan but I need to do it little by little as I need to work on my strength when avoiding some foods (like cheese or chocolate!). It is very motivating and inspiring for me to read other experiences that can help me to find my way to feel better and to improve my lifestyle. So, thank you very much and congrats for your work! 😀

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