Ex-AFL star Dale Thomas responds to ‘barbs’ about his weight gain

Dale Thomas is hardly Robinson Crusoe in adding a bit of weight during what’s been one helluva year.

Disruption to normal exercise routines, the emotional toll of the drastic upheaval to many of our lives and the simple fact we’re at home near the fridge more often has led to many gaining a wardrobe size or two.

But as a high-profile former AFL star with Collingwood and Carlton and now a member of the media, Thomas has a spotlight on him most of us don’t have to contend with.

Whether it’s attending charity golf events, promoting his children’s book or selling his house, Thomas is often photographed and apparently it’s led to some disappointing feedback about his appearance.

“Thanks to everyone who’s been kind enough to realise I’ve put on a few kgs,” Thomas tweeted. “Although I’m happy to laugh it off and understand eating was my way of dealing with Covid, before you throw a barb to a mate or a family member, maybe ask if they are OK first? We all cope different!”

Thomas received support from many in the sports community to his classy response.

Two-time premiership winner Xavier Ellis wrote “feel ya mate” while professional golfer Brady Wyatt replied “Melbourne lockdown things! Right there with ya brother”.

Dale Thomas during pre-season training in 2015 (Photo by Michael Dodge/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

Dale Thomas playing in the Jarrod Lyle golf day at Torquay earlier this month. Picture: Alison WyndSource:Herald Sun

Like many former footballers the 33-year-old’s waistline has fluctuated since he hung up the boots at the end of last season.

He enjoyed his first summer without pre-season training for 20 years before dropping almost 8kg while finishing runner-up on the sixth season I’m A Celebrity … Get Me Out Of Here! earlier this year.

But it wasn’t long before he put it back on, so from mid-June to late July he did a 45-day weight loss challenge and lost 10kg.

It sounds like some of it’s back again but Thomas should feel no need to apologise to anyone – this year or any year.

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