Right. All the gory details.
At my tippity-tip-top weight in 2007, I was exactly 20 stone 13.5 pounds. That’s a half a pound (227g) off 21 stone. Sexy!! I joined Slimming World in Armagh with my mother and her crazy neighbour, and I lost around a stone and a half. Then I went to New York for a week – and when I came back I had put on……..only half a pound! I ate like a son of a bitch the whole time I was there, and I only gained half a pound? Brilliant! So I celebrated that weigh in result with a Chinese. Then the next night I had a pizza. The day after that, I had packed sandwiches and crisps…….see the pattern? I ate my stone and a half back on again.
So in May 2009, expecting nothing, I joined the gym with my good friend Roisin! I actually enjoyed it, even though I was stuck in a pair of gigantic track suit bottoms that looked like fuck all on me. Then, on a night out, I met a girl who I would previously thought of as being roughly the same size as me. As I said previously, I liked this! I didn’t feel so freakish. But as she walked towards me in the bar, I could see she was smaller. Noticeably. Then came the awkward moment – do I mention the weightloss? Weight is a touchy subject, so it’s hard to know what to say. I went for it, and her eyes lit up. Slimming World had relieved her of three stone.
I knew from my previous experience that Slimming World works, so I thought I’d give it a shot. On 1st of June I weighed in at 20 and a half stone. You know the rest. This time, it just clicked.
On 19th April 2012, I weighed in at 11 stone 11 pounds. Just over 9 stone lighter than three years previously. Technically, I’m still overweight, but I’m happy enough with that. I’m a 32/34 inch waist and I fit into medium/large ladies tops and extra small/small men’s tops. What once were a gigantic and imposing set of boobs, are now a neat looking little rack (when clothed – its a mess otherwise). I look different, I have a skinny face with a wee pointy chin. You can feel my hip bones and ribs, without a dramatic amount of sucking in. Its cool! It’s different though. There have been countless times when I’ve wished I was fat again, because it was easier being fat all over. Now I have localised areas of fat, and some loose skin. It’s very noticeable to me, and I hate looking at it, but what else could I have expected? It’s simple physics ffs! But the most noticeable aspect of losing weight is the reactions of people. There are a variety of reactions.
A: “Oh my God look at you! You look amazing”
B: “Fuck you’ve lost some amount of weight!”
C: “Here how did you lose ‘the weight’?”
D: “Well McCooey, what’s the craic?”
In some ways, I love getting compliments. Especially if I see someone I haven’t seen in years, I make sure to throw myself in front of them! In other ways, the compliments are very humbling and, to a degree, embarrassing. People say “you should be so proud” – but I’m not proud. That sounds ungrateful almost, but I’m actually ashamed of having been so grossly overweight in the first place. Obese is the most accurate term, but it’s not the nicest. There were tonnes of reasons I was so fat, but there really was no excuse. The most basic and accurate explanation is – I love food. Plain and simple. The taste, the texture, the smell, the look of it. The comfort and the security of it. The control, the method of eating. The order. The company. The whole experience of food as a concept, and as a way of life as it turned out. Not rocket science.
That’s why I was so fat.