I want to get the most out of everything that I do. I feel better; I feel fitter.
Tom from Manchester is now a keen History Maker encouraging people to look again at their own relationship with tobacco.
Other than the feeling of your addiction being satisfied, there’s not much to gain from having a cigarette. You’ve only got a limited time alive; I’d quite like to make it as long as possible.
Tom started experimenting with smoking at a young age. “I first started smoking when I was probably 14. And that was just through sheer curiosity. My friends and I would buy small packs of tobacco and smoke in the streets and think we were more badass than we were.”
It was subsequent to his enrolment in university that he felt the tobacco addiction take hold.
When I was doing my essays in first and second year, that was when I was smoking the most. Usually, I would alleviate my stress by climbing or walking but there was no time for that, so I began to associate going out for a cigarette with getting away from the work.
Tom grew up within a very sporty family. A keen runner, climber and hiker, Tom hated the negative effect that smoking was having on his fitness.
“I do a lot of mountain walking and there’d be a certain steep part of the mountain, that anybody would get out of breath, and I’d realise I’d be a little more out of breath than I would expect to be.”
Health was the main reason for Tom kicking the addiction, but finance followed closely behind. “One of the main reasons why I stopped was for my health, but the other was the financial reason.”
Tom’s successful quit has energised him more than he had imagined it would. “I want to get the most out of everything that I do. I feel better; I feel fitter.”