I love seeing what my body can achieve

I love seeing what my body can achieve

Before losing weight, 44-year-old Karl Payne, from Barry, Vale of Glamorgan, was exhausted and in increasing pain. Now 4st 13½lbs lighter, he’s taking on every running challenge thrown his way – no wonder his group call him Mr Body Magic!

‘Wading through icy seawater, I hitched up my tutu and powered through the waves on the New Year’s Day Barry Island fundraising run. I may have looked silly, but I felt amazing! When I’d weighed 15st 7½lbs, I’d never have been brave enough to run 5km in front of thousands of people.

‘I’d been a carer for a decade and by May 2016, I was in so much pain I was worried I might come to a standstill. I had spondylosis – a slipped bone in my neck which left me in chronic pain – and arthritis in my knees, wrists and ankles. As a busy dad of three, I rarely had time for breakfast and got by on a milky coffee with three sugars. I’d snack throughout the day, then graze on the kids’ leftovers and chocolate in the evening.

‘One thing I really enjoyed was taking part in events with my skittles team. I had T-shirts printed for all of us before a competition and was dismayed to find the biggest XL size only just fitted me. When I saw a photo of the team afterwards, I barely recognised myself. I’d seen signs for a local Slimming World group near my house and that was the moment I decided to give it a go.

‘I quickly got to grips with the plan, cooking for myself instead of relying on snacks to get me through the day. I’d fill up on a mushroom omelette and baked beans for breakfast, a veg-packed pasta bake for lunch and a home-made Food Optimising curry with rice for dinner. And every night, I walked for 20 minutes on a foldaway treadmill in the lounge.

‘Nine weeks later, after I’d lost over 2½st, I had so much more energy and a friend suggested I sign up for a 5K charity run in three months’ time. I downloaded a couch-to-5K app and ran laps around the park after dropping my daughter off at school. Already feeling less pain in my neck and joints, I smashed that race and was soon signing myself up for another one.

‘These days, I take part in so many charity runs that the other members at group have nicknamed me Mr Body Magic – I’ve even run a half-marathon. Nothing beats seeing the pride in my kids’ faces as they cheer me on from the sidelines. Now that I’m fit and pain-free, no challenge seems too great, and I love seeing what my body can achieve. I feel like a new man!’

*Weight loss will vary due to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose

or become an online member


You'll find more delicious recipe and menu ideas at your local group, along with all the help you need to get started and reach your target weight.

Search