John Higgins has revealed he has lost three and a half stone after becoming “a little bit addicted” to spin classes.
The Scot is preparing for the Northern Ireland Open, which gets underway at the Waterfront Hall in Belfast on Saturday.
Higgins suggests he is unlikely to be at the peak of his powers, as he is planning to improve through what will be a long season.
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But he is likely to be in rude health, after working hard on his fitness since the World Championship drew to a close in May.
“I’ve lost about three and half stone,” Higgins told WST. “I was 15 and a half stone at the Crucible and now I’m down to about 12.
A lot of people ask if I feel better, I don’t know. I do feel a bit better but I’ll wait and see. It isn’t going to be the reason I’ll pot balls better.
“It is for my whole wellbeing really. I was too heavy for how small of a guy I am. You don’t see it in yourself. It is amazing. I couldn’t see that I was getting steadily bigger. You are happy with your life and who do you have to look good for? I have my wife and my kids. It is a good thing I’ve started doing it.”
Expanding on his thirst for fitness, and spin classes in particular, Higgins said: “It’s not helping me pot balls but it is helping me lose weight.
I just seem to be a little bit addicted to them. I go three or four times a week. I enjoy getting up in the morning and doing an hour of training.
The four-time world champion has admitted he will need to scope out the venues during the season in order to keep up his fitness drive.
“It will be tough because when I am starting to travel to tournaments again I will need to find some spin classes there or go on the bikes in the hotels," he said. “A lot of the boys do running and that is easier. I’ll need to have a scout about different cities to see if there are any spin classes there.”
Higgins’ practice has not been particularly good, but he is not too fazed heading into the opening event of this season’s Home Nations Series.
“I’ve just been picking balls out for Stephen Maguire for about the last week,” Higgins said. “I’m not looking forward to it at all really.
I’ve only been back for maybe a week to ten days because we knew we had six or seven weeks off. I’ve just been doing what most of the boys have been doing and putting my cue away.
“You know it is going to kick in soon in the next few months, so I just want to try to be as fresh as I can be, as it is a long season from now on.”
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