A Glasgow man who lost more than 11 stone in a year is now helping others to shed the pounds and change their lives.
In a hugely inspirational tale of self-development, Martin Bryan weighed just over 27 stone at his heaviest in February 2019.
After losing his mother, his weight spiralled until he was suffering serious side-effects – he was prediabetic, and was told if he didn’t lose weight the health issues would have potentially fatal outcomes.
Martin told Glasgow Live that was the moment he knew he needed to do something to change his life – and now he is opening his own weight loss consultancy ‘shop’ in Glasgow while working in Clydebank and Dumbarton.
“Before I started my weight loss journey, I was suffering loads of health issues but really just felt like I was floating by in life and not living” says Martin.
“I lost my mum to cancer when I was young, only 21. She was my best friend, my closest family member and it just impacted me so much. I think I had stopped living my life properly because of that”
“I was getting bigger and bigger, and if my mum had seen she would have kicked me. I realised I had to do something, I was pre-diabetic, and was going to make myself ill. But I didn’t start the diet until I was 29.”
Martin lost his weight by embarking on the 1:1 Diet by Cambridge Weight Plan and with support from his consultant, Cat.
“My weight spiralled after years of really bad eating habits” explained Martin. “Don’t get me wrong, I wasn’t phoning takeaways all the time – but that was part of it.
“I had healthy meals with my family but they were the wrong things for me, and I was eating big portions of everything.
“Then I got a job in Glasgow city centre, and that was when things got bad – I’d have the odd McDonalds for lunch or Chinese takeaway. Those aren’t lunches, they’re full meals. I’d have a meal deal for breakfast, thinking they were the healthier option, but they aren’t healthy – they’re full or carbs and fat.
“My partner comes from Gran Canaria, and I went to visit him. I got off the plane and on my left hand side I had bruises all the way down my legs from forcing myself to sit in a seat too small”.
Alongside the health issues Martin experienced with his weight, he also endured emotional turmoil and paranoia – but insists there are more reasons than meet the eye for people being a bigger size.
“I was so embarrassed, all the time. Asking for a seat belt extender is so embarrassing. I would avoid getting public transport, thinking someone would be talking about me on the bus.
“People judge you and don’t know what others go through. I see it all the time, perhaps someone who is post-menopausal or who has underlying health conditions or take steroid medication that makes them gain weight.
“Losing weight made me change because it changed my life. I can now walk up a hill or ride a bike, I’m not living in fear of doing those things anymore. All the health issues I had before I lost the weight have simply disappeared. It’s like my life has just begun.”
Martin has now become inspired to become a consultant after working with Cat, and seeing how much people are struggling with their weight during lockdown.
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“It was a whirlwind after I reached out to Cat. I didn’t find it difficult because I had her, I had the accountability of seeing her and now I know how good that is.
“When I walked out the office for the first time, I apologised to Cat for being so big, I was so anxious about it. She immediately put me at ease. We don’t need to lie about the issues we have, we are all human, and it’s important to have that person to vent to during such a mission as the one I was on.”
During his journey, Martin strictly followed the diet plan that was arranged with him and his consultant and was tailored to suit him personally. The weight soon started dropping off – and he called it “easy”.
He was nominated for man of the year 2020, and although didn’t win, was the top weight loss loser in Scotland.
“I started working as a consultant and have clients in Clydebank, Paisley and Dumbarton. All over really, but i’m now opening my own shop.
“People are depressed during lockdown, and it’s so difficult. We are able to remain open as a food and health advisor, but we do zoom appointments too. Our appointments are time limited because of regulations, socially distant and require face masks, but the most important thing is you can speak to someone about how you are doing on your journey and get the support you need.”
You can contact Martin here.
*Disclaimer: at Glasgow Live we champion all sizes – so long as people are healthy.