An obese dad who was scoffing snacks daily transformed his life and lost eight stone after having a breakdown in a supermarket’s biscuit aisle.
Chris Brudenell, 41, would secretly eat packets of biscuits and hide the evidence before collecting his two children from school.
His eating habits soon came to an abrupt halt when a nurse told him he would have to lose weight or risk having a stroke.
Fearing he wouldn’t be alive to see his daughter getting married, Chris kick-started his weight-loss journey.
But it wasn’t all plain sailing from then on as Chris recalled the time he had to walk out of the shop after breaking down in the biscuit aisle while trying to lose weight.
Chris who is married to Alison, said: “I found the first few months of my new regime very difficult. Trying to kick my sugar addiction was very hard.
“I had a meltdown in Sainsbury’s biscuit aisle once and had to walk out of the shop!
“Once the weight started coming off and I was seeing results it got easier.”
It was on his 39th birthday on 30th June 2019 that Chris decided he needed to make a change.
The self-employed photographer from Fenland, Cambridgeshire, said: “I really didn’t want to enter my 40’s being so unhappy with my size.
“I’d run out of excuses as to why I couldn’t do it and also the realisation hit me that it was only going to get harder as I got older.
“I got to the point in my life where I was eating to try and make myself feel happy, but it just didn’t work.
“I was a full-time dad to my kids and when they both went to school I felt like I didn’t really have much purpose. That’s when the secret eating would take place.
“I’d stop in the shop to buy a pack of biscuits and eating them all before collecting the children from school.
“I’d always look for the 3 for £1 offers on chocolate and eat them on the way home and hide the evidence.”
Chris suffers from high blood pressure as a result of his obesity and has a history of heart conditions in his family.
During his annual check-up in May 2019, Chris received some news about his health that made him realise he could no longer keep ignoring his weight and the reasons behind it.
He said: “The nurse came out and told me that I needed to sort out my weight or I was going to have a stroke. That was a huge shock for me.
“The first thing that entered my head was the possibility of one day not seeing my daughter’s wedding day and giving her away. I didn’t want my wife to have to care for me either.
“Coming to terms with my depression and acknowledging what I was doing to myself was very hard.”
Determined to shed the weight, Chris joined MAN v FAT Football, a football league only for men who want to lose weight.
Chris said: “I did couch to 5km just eight weeks after joining the league and just carried on setting targets for myself.
“It’s become more than just running; it’s about how far I can push myself because I spent 39 years sitting on my bum!
“Signing up for races has really helped me keep on track. ‘Project 40’, as I called it, came to a head last October when I ran my first half marathon with 1978 as my race number. The feeling of pride and utter exhaustion was just the best!
“Since losing weight my whole life has changed beyond all recognition. I’ve done things in the last two years I could only have dreamed of before.
“Abseiling Peterborough cathedral, a flight in a glider and a tandem skydive from 17000 feet to name but a few!
“Having spent my whole life being told no you can’t, suddenly I can!
“Little things like being able to buy a Next suit off the peg and clothes from Superdry!
“My wedding ring dropped four sizes and I’ve never had this much energy.”
The dad has so far dropped from 24 stone to 16 stone since starting his training in July 2017- but he hasn’t stopped there and is now aiming for 15 stone.
On Sunday 13th October Chris will run the Royal Parks Half Marathon and he hopes to cross the finish line somewhere around the 2:12 mark.
Chris added: “I love community running and the buzz of the crowd. I’m always high fiving people and getting hugs from strangers. I fully expect to burst in to tears as I run past Buckingham palace!
“I’ll be running for SANDS. My amazing friend Amy lost her son Charlie at 30 weeks. I cannot even begin to comprehend what Amy and her family went through during that time, but I know SANDS really helped out.”
To donate to Chris’ cause visit http://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/chris-brudenell11
The Royal Parks Half Marathon will take place on Sunday 13th October. For more information and to sign up for a charity race place visit https://royalparkshalf.com/