Premier Robert Ghiz made a commitment to himself that he would get in the best shape of his life during this his 40th year.
© Guardian photo
Premier Robert Ghiz
Ghiz had three good reasons why — Julia, Emma and Jack — his three young children along with his wife, Kate.
Ghiz turned 40 in January and nearly a year after making a commitment to become healthier, he has dropped nearly 25 pounds, transformed his diet and introduced a rigorous fitness regime which has moved him ever so closer to his ultimate goal.
“I’m 40 now,” Ghiz said in a year-end interview with The Guardian.
“Ten years from now, I’ll be 50. My father was diagnosed with cancer around that stage and passed away at the age of 51… I’m going to be 50 or 51 and I’m going to have a 15, 13, and 11-year-old.
“I want to be able to look forward to my kids’ high school graduations, university graduations, marriages and all those things.”
Ghiz’s father, Joe Ghiz, died at his home on Nov. 9, 1996, at the age of 51, following a battle with colon cancer.
In the words of now Senator Percy Downe, Joe Ghiz’s passing came way too soon. He said Joe Ghiz was destined for bigger things.
Robert Ghiz was in his early 20s when he said goodbye to his father during a state funeral at St. Dunstan’s Basilica in Charlottetown. It left a lasting impression on the man who Prince Edward Island residents now call premier.
Ghiz, whose wife, Kate, is an emergency room physician, said he knows there are no guarantees.
But he wants to do everything he can to stay healthy. He said while he may soon allow himself to have a slice of pizza or a bag of chips, he plans on staying committed to his new, healthier lifestyle.
“It’s giving me more energy. I’m feeling better. I’m enjoying life more.”
During his annual year-end interview, which will be aired tonight at 7:30 p.m. on Eastlink TV, Ghiz discusses a whole host of issues from the province’s decision to cut public sector pension plans, to the Senate spending scandal, to his blockbuster announcement that Hal Perry was crossing the floor to join the Liberals.
Ghiz confirms he met with Perry at the premier's Brighton home two weeks before the blockbuster announcement, where they went over the plans for his defection to the Liberals.
“‘If you’re interested in coming over, we’d be interested in you coming’,” Ghiz said. “‘But we can’t tell anyone. We need to keep it a secret.' Two weeks later we made the announcement.”