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Noel, who features in the Quit TV ad,talks about how it took him a few attempts before he quit smoking for good.
Noel would be the first to admit he really enjoyed smoking and although he has quit smoking for good, he found the temptation hard to resist in the past.
“Like most people I quit a couple of times. I enjoyed smoking to be honest, particularly if you were having a drink with friends. One of the times I was off them for a year. I thought I was on the right road after a year but unfortunately I slipped back into the bad habits.
Like most smokers, Noel associated having a drink with having a smoke and after a year of being quit he found it hard to say no to a cigar when it was offered to him on a night out.
“I had finished a work shift so we went down for a beer to finish off the evening and he presented me with a nice little cigar. So I said you know I’m off these but he said I’ve bought this for you... try it, which I did.
That was the mistake that I made. I was out a few days later with my wife for a drink and I asked for a cigar and that was the start of me getting back onto cigarettes.
It felt good to be off them but as I said I actually enjoyed smoking. So I wasn’t too upset to go back onto them.”
Noel says that a wheezing in his chest was the wake-up call he needed to quit for good.
“There are a number of different ways to stop smoking but I just made the decision to stop. And that was primarily because after I had finished playing football, I played for a number of years, that I had a feeling on my chest, a wheezing, which was a real shock.
“I decided at that time I really had to stop. I knew if I carried on things were really only going to get worse.
When asked about how he felt when after he quit smoking, Noel talks about how his health has improved.
“Young people feel as though they are untouchable, and most smokers would feel that too.
“After I stopped I had a huge improvement in my breathing. I felt better, I felt cleaner.
“It’s surprising when you are a smoker and you are with smokers you don’t actually smell it. When you stop smoking, it’s the first thing that hits you that when you walk into a room or someone passes by you the smell of smoke. I think it’s really important, health wise, to stop.
“I still train and I go walking now and I’m able to do it and I’m sure had I stayed on the cigarettes that might not have been possible for me.
Noel talks about how he knows this time he is quit for good and will never be tempted again by the lure of cigarettes.
“I have a real sense of achievement that I’m a non-smoker.
“I’m progressing in years quickly enough without cigarettes helping me along. I might not look it but I still try and do a bit of training and walking now and I’m sure if I had stayed on the cigarettes that may not have been possible for me.
“I can see someone smoking, and there isn’t an issue but I am just glad I’m not that person.”