New year, new Niall: Romford reporter is not giving up resolutions without a fight

PUBLISHED: 19:00 13 January 2017

Niall during a boxing session in Romford

Niall during a boxing session in Romford


Ding ding ding, week two of my resolutions challenge is well under way and I’m pleased to report I haven’t strayed from either of my pledges so far.

Niall doing some light sparring with Robin Dupre Niall doing some light sparring with Robin Dupre

Nearly two weeks into my resolutions – to quit smoking and start boxing – I’ve had three sessions at the gym and haven’t touched a cigarette since the turn of the year.

It hasn’t been all plain sailing, however, as I’ve had to come to terms with my own limitations in the ring, mainly my lack of fitness and strength, and experienced some of the physical drawbacks that occur when you stop smoking.

On Friday I went back to the Art of Boxing, in George Street, Romford, for another one on one with Robin Dupre.

Despite stinging more like a butterfly than a bee, and moving about as gracefully as Bambi on ice, Robin offered great encouragement on what I was and wasn’t doing right.

Niall testing his lungs for carbon monoxide levels Niall testing his lungs for carbon monoxide levels

I also spent a couple rounds trying to lay a glove on Robin, to no avail, before swapping roles and trying to dodge his jabs.

Embarrassingly I wasn’t the sharpest when it came to dodging and often found myself freezing on the spot like an animal in the headlights about to be hit by a truck – even though Robin was lightly tapping me at about half a mile per hour.

By Tuesday my aches and pains had worn off and I headed to Gants Hill Tube station, in Cranbrook Road to learn more about giving up smoking from Lyn Hanlon, a stop smoking specialist at King George and Whipps Cross hospitals, which both serve Redbridge.

While the NHS offers patches and nicotine replacements to help people give up, it is also friendly to e-cigarette users and let them access their services.

This was good news for me, as I’ve started vaping, so I decided to take a carbon monoxide test and was delighted to see my reading was three particles per million - the average reading of non-smokers.

Lyn also informed me that my trouble sleeping and bouts of dizziness were side effects of quitting and said it could take 12 weeks for my body to get used to the changes.

Whilst 12 weeks seems daunting at least my boxing should have improved by then ... I hope.

Latest Romford News Stories

5 minutes ago

Police in Hertfordshire are appealing to members of the public in Havering for help in tracking down a wanted man they believe is in the Romford area.

53 minutes ago

These are the Havering roads to miss next week if you don’t want to risk delays.


Bob Carlton, a well known theatre director and writer has died.

A touching musical comedy centred around the excitement of a royal wedding during 1940s Britain is making its way to the borough.

Young people will be campaigning to earn a role representing the borough as a member of Youth Parliament.

A former Olympic hurdler will be joining Dancing on Ice champion Ray Quinn at the official opening of the Sapphire Ice and Leisure Centre in two weeks time.

Havering Council has appointed a preferred bidder to deliver new regeneration projects aimed at rejuvenating the borough’s housing stock.


Window and conservatory specialist Ken Rhodes talks about the possibilities for brightening up your home for the new year, and with their home improvement finance deals it’s possible for everyone to make some changes

Lisa and Jennie are cousins who grew up in the borough. Their grandmother, ‘Nanny Fish’ was a huge part of their lives, and while she had dementia and increasing needs, she really benefited from having care in her nephew’s loving home. This experience was the inspiration for Lisa and Jennie to set-up their own home care service.

Breaking News

Yesterday, 10:04

A man’s body has been found outside a block of flats this morning.

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

Show Job Lists

News from your area


Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now