A man has gone from a chubby bullied teen to international fitness model – after becoming embarrassed by his SWEAT problem.
Muscular Mike Sullivan has recently returned from Los Angeles and Amsterdam where he proudly showed off his ripped body during fitness shoots.
But just four years ago, the now 23-year-year-old was a hefty 17 stone who would gauge daily on fry ups and takeaways and enjoy heavy booze binges every weekend.
After dropping out of school with depression when cruel bullies labelled him a ‘fat b*stard’ the shame became too much when he spent the majority of his college days wringing out the excess sweat from his short walk-in.
The remarkable transformation has been achieved through a complete overhaul of his diet and a strict twice a day weight programme.
And Mike from County Derry, Ireland, says he has to pinch himself when he compares his old flabby self to his current physique.
He said: “My lifestyle used to be one where I was abusing my body with alcohol and junk food and I was heavily bullied in school for being severely overweight.
“I even dropped out of school because of the depression. I would just be eating takeaways and greasy fry ups almost daily.”
“I would drink heavily – maybe nine pints and them move on to spirits on all weekend benders and not understand how bad it was for my body.
“I was 17 stone of pure fat and would be the butt of every joke. I would be called a fat bastard and just did not feel like I could be myself.
“In society you are judged on your image in two seconds and people would just say I was lazy and scoffed my face with rubbish.”
Mike says the turning point in his life was when he started college at the age of 19.
He said: “I would walk in but would arrive soaking wet from my own sweat.
“I would be wringing it off my clothes all day. It was disgusting and gross and I just knew then that something had to change.
“I just decided to take control of my life.
“I joined a gym and just got on the treadmill. I thought I just had to eat less and train but I ended up starving myself and going down to 10 and a half stone.
“I was under the illusion I was doing the right thing, but I was just a bag of bones.”
“Six and a half months later I realised that was not how I wanted to look. Even when I was fat I still had quite a presence, but I had got the to the stage where just a gust of wind would blow me away.”
Mike said he then started researching weight training and has now put on four stone of muscle with a strict programme of working out twice a day and gaining a deep understanding of nutrition.
He has swapped the takeaways and fry ups for a diet of porridge, mince, chicken, smoked salmon and lot of veg.
And three years later he is now being booked for modelling jobs across the world.
He said: “I got my first ever modelling booking in LA and have also been to Amsterdam for fitness shoots.
“I am also a fitness trainer and advisor and my business helping people with weight loss is also booming.
“I am shocked by the changes I have made. It all feels like a dream. I was just a boy who wanted to get in shape but I think people like the fact that I am a success story.
“Everything has fitted into place perfectly and I am living the dream and taking all the opportunities that come my way.
“It is amazing. All the people never knew me now want to be my best friend and I have just got a much better outlook on everything.
“It has been tough and I have lost a lot of friends that I used to go drinking with who don’t understand why I am always in the gym.
“But it becomes a lifestyle and a second nature and was the best decision I ever made.”