Fitness influencer Joe Wicks has bared all about how his father’s heroin addiction helped to shape the life he has today.
The workout expert, who has received heaps of praise for taking on the role of the nation’s online PE teacher during the coronavirus lockdown, opened up about how his dad’s drug problem lead him to the fitness industry.
Speaking on comedian Russell Brand’s Under the Skin podcast, dad-of-two Joe confessed that he turned to exercise to help him deal with the negative feelings that came with having a parent with addiction issues.
Speaking about his and brother Nikki’s childhood, Joe, who is known as The Body Coach on social media, said, “Because of my dad’s addiction, and the damage I saw that cause, me and Nikki steered clear of it.
“We weren’t smoking weed, we were training, exercising and playing sport.
“Along the line, I decided that wasn’t going to be my destiny – that wasn’t going to be my path.”
Joe continued to reveal that he encourages his dad, who is now sober, to battle his demons with exercise.
“Now, when my dad’s going through a low period, I’m texting him and ringing him and asking how he is. I’m not judging him for being an addict.
“Before you turn to binge eating, addiction, drugs or anti-depressants, try exercise. It’s hard, my dad says the last thing he wants to do when he’s going through his low points is exercise. But I say, ‘Dad, you know how it makes you feel – you always feel better’.”
Thanks to Joe’s love of fitness and desire to keep the country’s kids moving throughout the tough health crisis, he has raised a whopping £80,000 from his online fitness classes.
But Joe won’t be keeping the cash for himself. He’s donated the huge sum to the NHS to help the workers battling the coronavirus on the front line.
“I saw the number, I was blown away, I said that needs to go somewhere special. The NHS is the right place – it felt right, I’m so proud I’m doing that,” he announced on Good Morning Britain.