A fitness fanatic who used to get out of breath walking upstairs now works out at the gym five times a week after shedding an astonishing EIGHT stone.
Tom McGuiness, 32, lost a third of his body weight in just 12 months after being told he would be “dead in ten years” if he did not do something to shed the pounds.
He would scoff full English breakfasts, pizzas and McDonalds through the day and wash it down with 12 pints of beer while watching the rugby at the weekend.
But when Tom struggled to walk up the steps of a castle while on holiday in Spain, pal Mike Brown intervened and encouraged him to ditch the fatty foods and exercise.
Mike banned him from eating takeaways and would text him every day at the start of their training programme to make sure Tom was eating the right things.
He has now transformed his body and is virtually unrecognisable after a 12 month fitness campaign that he says “saved his life”.
Tom now eats a controlled diet – limited to 1,500 calories per day – and maintains his fitness regime which includes five workouts a week.
Now a slimline 16st 2lb, Tom has gone from a whopping XXXXXXL shirt size to a loose-fitting XXL and he has dropped from 58inch waist trousers to 38inch.
Tom, from Warrington, Cheshire., said: “We were chatting over a beer and Mike said ‘right, I’m getting you fit when we get home, I don’t want to see you die’.
“Mike has saved my life, he really inspired me to get fit.
“I would have been dead in a few years if I had carried on the way I was going.
“He said to go on a low-calorie diet and only consume 1,500 calories a day.
“He had me in the gym five times a week doing circuit sessions and focusing on losing weight.
“I lost 13lbs in the first week, it was such a drastic change and I was really inspired to keep it up after that because it was obviously working.”
Tom’s weight began to spiral out of control four years ago when he lost an uncle, which triggered anxiety and depression.
He fell into a pit of despair and his weight gain caused health issues as he would get out of breath doing mundane daily tasks like walking up stairs.
But after Mike persuaded him to change his lifestyle, Tom is now the picture of health and can out his mates during a weekly game of five-a-side football.
And he believes his fitness regime has boosted his mental health too as he is now full of confidence and keeps his anxiety under control.
Tom added: “My uncle was like the glue that held the family together and when he died, it really hit me hard.
“I started suffering from anxiety and I didn’t want to do anything or go out.
“I just felt like I was going to die and there was no point doing anything.
“I’ve turned all that around now, I feel so much better, much more confident and I don’t get anxious anymore.
“My mum and dad are really grateful to Mike too for what he has done for me because they have seen a big change in me.
“He would pick me up from work at 10pm to take me to the gym and train with me to make sure I was doing it, he never gave up on me.”
Tom has even changed jobs to suit his new active lifestyle, ditching the bookies where he was sat down all day for a new role in a builder’s merchant.
He added: “I would have a full English breakfast in the morning and order a Chinese or pizza while at work then have a McDonald’s on the way home.
“I used to drink 12 pints at the rugby, now if I go the match I don’t need a drink, I’d rather have a cup of tea. If I have two pints now I’m bloated.”
Business owner Mike, 55, said he used to weigh 18 stone himself but lost eight stone after the birth of his granddaughter 10 years ago.
He said: “We go to Lloret de Mar every year to watch Warrington play away at Catalans Dragons, but that year my son was getting married so we turned into a stag do.
“There was 20 odd of us and we all went up this castle and Tom said he couldn’t get to the top.
“I thought, he’s only 30 and he can’t get up these steps? I told him he needs to do something or he’d be dead in 10 years with his weight.
“He’s done brilliantly. When I first started, I set myself a goal of running three minutes continuously, so that’s what I set for Tom as a first target.
“I used to text him everyday making sure he was eating the right things and telling him not to go into Subway thinking it was a healthier option.
“More than anything I’m proud of how he has got his head in the right place and that his mental health has improved.
“He’s cut his hair and everything, he looks like a totally different bloke.”