Real life weight loss stories: George Tsiappourdhi
Weight loss...12 stone
'Last year, my grandad came to visit from Cyprus - and the last thing he said before he left was that I was so fat, I had no neck.
'He was right! I had a 54in waist, too, and was 27 1/2 stone. I'd always been fat. When I was 7, I was taken to see a dietician. They said I'd grow out of it. I didn't! As I got older, all I did was grow out as well as up!
'I was eating huge portions. I'd go to a fast-food place on my way home from work, get three meals and say they were for my friends - then scoff the lot. And when I got home, I'd eat another meal that Mum cooked.
'I couldn't find clothes to fit me in the shops, so had to buy them off the Internet.
'My weight was such a problem, I left my job and I was at an all-time low when I realised I'd never weighed less than my age.
'I was thinking about having a gastric band, but kept being told I should try LighterLife. I'd heard about it, good and bad - blah, blah, blah, I thought! But then I was given the number of a girl who'd lost 11st with it, so I rang her and had a long chat. She convinced me it was the answer.
'LighterLife's a weight-loss and counselling programme. I'd have to give up my normal food and eat a special porridge, soup, milkshake, and a cereal bar each day. I thought it'd be hard, but it wasn't - especially after I lost 15lb in the first week!
'The milestone of getting down to 22 stone when I was aged 23 was great, as I was actually older than my weight for the first time I could recall! I kept on losing 7lb a week and, in six months, I'd lost 11 stone.
'The all-male counselling sessions really helped, delving into the reasons why I overate. It all started to fall into place. I also began walking and then, as I lost weight, I started to run.
'I even did the London Marathon earlier this year. My time? A respectable 5 1/2 hours. Now, I'm also starting to use weights, as getting a six-pack is my next challenge!
'Best of all, when I went to Cyrpus to surprise Grandad and Grandma, they didn't recognise the new me!'
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