Amazing Loser Chris Mills
This week’s Amazing Loser Chris decided to do something about his weight after being diagnosed with sleep apnoea. He joined a local course to learn the basics of weight loss and nutrition and has used what he’s learned to great effect – shifting 6 stone. Here’s how he did it…
Name: Chris Mills
Occupation: Part-time accounts assistant
Highest weight: 18st 10 (119kg / 262lbs)
Current weight: 12st 10 (81kg / 178lbs)
Weight lost: 6st / 38kg / 84lbs
What led to you becoming overweight?
Many years of a poor diet, and being diagnosed with sleep apnoea in 2016.
What negative experiences did you have of being overweight?
I played very little sport from my mid-twenties to 2017. I had back pain, high blood pressure and was generally just really unfit.
What made you decide that you needed to lose weight?
My diagnosis of sleep apnoea and subsequent use of a CPAP machine gave me more energy as I was sleeping properly. This led to 1 stone in weight loss during 2017. Then at my 55+ health check in 2018, my only red indicator was my weight so I decided to try to do something about it.
What did you eat before you lost weight?
Large portion sizes, takeaways twice a week, pastries, sweets, cakes, processed foods, biscuits, crisps.
What do you eat now?
Smaller portion sizes, wholemeal bread, a lot more vegetables, limited plain chocolate and alcohol. No takeaways, limited pastries, biscuits etc. I try to cook my own food where possible, and I keep an eye on calories.
How has life changed now that you’ve lost weight?
I now feel fitter and have started playing badminton, tennis and table tennis. I walk most days, anywhere between 1.5 to 3 miles, or 30 to 60 minutes.
How was lockdown for you?
It was strange, boring, lonely and thoughtful. It had a small impact on my weight – I was ok until July when I put on 4lbs, but I used my knowledge of weight loss and maintenance to lose those 4lbs during August.
I noticed that my portion sizes had increased for both my main meals and snacks and that my alcohol intake (while it was still reasonable) had doubled, so I knew what to do.
You’re now maintaining your weight loss, how different is this to actively trying to lose weight?
It’s been the hardest part – you start eating more but you have to try and get the right calorie intake to maintain your weight. If you take your mind off it, your weight can very quickly start to increase. So you’ve got to keep an eye on your weight on a regular basis and adjust your eating. I weigh myself now once a week every week.
To start with it was difficult to adjust to eating more without feeling guilty about taking in too many calories, but it’s something I’m getting used to.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to lose weight?
Refer yourself to the One You course (or find out if there’s something similar in your area). Cut down on portion sizes, eat lots of vegetables, cut down on or cut out sugary food, processed food and fatty foods and try and eat healthy for 6 out of 7 days.
What 3 things do men need to know about weight loss?
- It’s worth it
- There’s no magic solution, you need to find what works for you.
- If I can do it, you can do it!