This week on the guest blog, we chat with Tom Clifford, founder of Lawless Health, an exclusive club that transforms men from their desk-bound life to a fun, mobile, trim life through purpose, guidance and autonomy. Tom talks about the importance of health and exercise and how his life-changing experience turned into a "glass-half-full" opportunity. Keep scrolling to read more. 

All photos taken by Sean Kibyuk

Hi guys, I am Tom Clifford, founder of Lawless Health.

In December 2019, I received a devastating email overnight. The company I flew across the world to work for three years ago in Calgary, the Athlete Factory, was filing for bankruptcy and closing with immediate effect. That left all it's employees in a difficult position, right before Christmas, being owed salariesespecially after I had just finished helping my girlfriend pay off her school fees. This seemed to be a common theme in Calgary and Alberta, to what I believe represents where the economy is at. But every cloud has a silver lining, this unfortunate event gave me the opportunity to launch something that had been brewing in the background for nearly three years.

I am proud to welcome everyone to a new exclusive club, Lawless Health, aimed at helping men with crazy busy schedules, get back in shape, to buy back time to spend with their families and be successful in the workplace. It doesn’t matter if you have been, or are going through a similar situation to me or have job security at the moment, the purpose of Lawless is to build a network and community for men, to help each other, hold each other accountable and bring us together through exercise and training and improving our lifestyle. 

Why have I focused on such a niche market? Throughout my career, I have worked at home in England, Australia and Singapore, and I found the clients I work best with are men who used to have an athletic background, have a busy schedule but want to spend quality time with their family, but need a little bit of TLC.

I’ll dive into more stats and details about Lawless later and the community that is being built, but first let me introduce Lucy Dunne, founder of Dunnebells.

Lucy is another ex-pat living in Calgary, originally from Melbourne, Australia. She started her fitness journey many years ago, originally struggling to overcome her binge eating habit, before losing 65lbs, while sharing her story. She was able to build a community through other women asking how she did it, leading to the birth of Dunnebells.

In essence, we are both writing today to let you all know, that no matter what your situation, whether you are struggling to overcome a specific challenge, lose weight, become more active, deal with a stressful or unexplainable situation at work, that there is a community here to support you. And with the right tools, you can overcome any obstacle that is thrown your way. 

Part of this and through the various programs we offer our members is providing everyone with guidance, not just what to do but the reason why. For example, movement and activity are key for general health and happiness but also productivity in the workplace. Research by the World Health Organization suggests physical inactivity is the fourth leading risk factor for global mortality. So the 60+ hours per week sitting behind a desk or in front of a screen isn’t helping. While even more research goes on suggest a positive association between productivity in the workplace and leisure-time physical activity through various forms. 

Now, it can be very easy to say we are too busy to see an in-person trainer. Work takes up the vast majority of our time combined with spending time with our family, leaving very little time to focus on our own mental and physical well being. The beauty of online training is that it’s accessible 24/7, meaning that everything is available at the click of a button. You can workout at a time and location that is best for you, giving you the autonomy, flexibility and control along your journey.

Like many of our children, we used to play sports growing up and training, exercising and being active was very much focused towards participating in said sport. But as soon as our sporting career ends, our goals or motivation suddenly comes to an abrupt end and it becomes easy to put off going to the gym for an hour at the end of the day. This is where helping our members by providing a sense of purpose kicks in.

I honestly believe many of us feel like, even if we are afraid to admit it, we could do with losing a couple of extra pounds or want to make sure we are active enough when it comes to retirement, but maybe lack the motivation, desire or understanding of how to start. While individually, one of the above points may be true or you have your own goals and reasons, by donating a percentage of the subscription price to charity adds more of a purpose to your cause. This gives our members the opportunity to give back to your community by helping others and do something for the greater good, rather than when we reach the big 6-0 come to realize that we haven’t served any real purpose during a lifetime (as mentioned by author David Pink in his book Drive). Lucy and I both have found this is an added benefit to the programs, helping clients stay on track and provide the extra bit of motivation. 

The final and the element with the greatest impact, something Lucy is an expert at, building a community. A strong community was the #1 thing that helped Lucy when she was on her weight-loss journey. It was also the hardest thing for her to find. So, after losing the weight and figuring out how to keep it off she started her company Dunnebells with the community as the focal point.

With clients all over the world supporting and empowering each other through their fitness journeys, Lucy feels blessed to wake up every day and work with such amazing humans. Her clients achieve incredible results, and they have a lot of enjoyment during their journey! Just one of the things that make Dunnebells different from the other fitness and weight-loss programs out there.