Meet Tom Jones, who’s turned his life around after losing 5 stone 2½lbs and winning the title of Slimming World’s Young Slimmer of the Year…
“My weight problem began at the age of 11, when I’d go round to my next-door neighbour’s house for late night sausage sandwiches and biscuits. When I was 14 I started helping to care for my sister following an injury that left her in a wheelchair. I turned to food for comfort, but it became like an addiction and I’d hide food wrappers under my bed so that my mum couldn’t see!
“After high school I went to college to study musical theatre where I played the class clown and was known as ‘big Tom with the big personality’. I joined Slimming World in February 2012 on the recommendation of my mum and I’m still amazed by how much I’ve achieved in such a short space of time – supported by my Consultant and all the members at my group.
“When I joined Slimming World I was very nervous that I’d be the youngest person there – and I was – but it didn’t matter because everyone was so friendly. I sat through the New Member Talk and was amazed by the amount of unlimited Free Foods I could enjoy.
In my first week I lost 11lbs and also received a letter saying that I’d been accepted to attend Paul McCartney’s school for performing arts (LIPA) in Liverpool. Fast-forward five weeks and I was a proud member of Club 10, 2 stones lighter and the owner of many Slimmer of the Week awards. I was on a roll!
“As I lost weight my confidence grew and grew. I began sharing my favourite recipes and top tips in Image Therapy. I was cooking food that made me happy like Slimming World’s KFC chicken or home-made burger and chips with salad.
“Before I joined Slimming World I couldn’t even walk up stairs without sweating. Now I take part in sponsored walks and I've got so much energy I can't wait to get out of bed. I hated the idea of going to the gym – and I knew I’d never be motivated to go. That’s not what Body Magic is about. It’s about finding activities that you enjoy and feel comfortable doing – and walking is perfect for me.
"I've finished my first year at university, and am happy to say I'm still at my target weight. As a student it's great I can still party without feeling guilty, I'm always out with friends.
“I used to be scared of social situations, preferring to stay within my close group of friends. Now I walk into a room and I’m confident. Slimming World has changed my life, it gave me a life and it helped save my life, too!”