An Irish father-of-four lost ten stone – by giving up GUINNESS.
Alan Byrne, 40, of Naas, County Kildare, indulged in eight pints of the famous Irish stout on a typical night out, contributing to an unhealthy lifestyle which saw his weight balloon up to 25st 2lb.
After making the decision to lose weight, he ditched his Guinness habit and took up healthy eating and regular exercise on his way to lose a massive ten stone. Today he weighs 15st 3lb.
He said: “I used to drink pints of Guinness, but not any more. Now I’m lighter and fitter, and I’m able to enjoy quality time with the kids.
“I don’t miss it. I may not drink Guinness anymore but I’m still Irish through-and-through.”
Mr Byrne, a construction manager once wore XXXL clothing, with a 44-inch waist band. Now he can fit into a 33-inch waistband.
Mr Byrne, who is married to Mairead, 33, and is father to Harry, three, Joshua, seven, Niall, 16 and Shannon, 19, decided to make the lasting change after he lost pace with his growing family.
He said: “It wasn’t until my young family started to grow that I decided I needed to turn things around.
“My weight stopped me from getting involved in the activities they were doing. Going on holiday was a nightmare as I didn’t want to go out and I didn’t feel good within myself.
“Day-to-day life was terrible. I was always making excuses as to why I couldn’t do things.
“I was out of breath constantly. Even climbing the stairs up to my home office would leave me out of breath.”
Mr Byrne failed at his first few attempts at weight loss but eventually he joined a slimming club called Unislim, where he clicked with the group leader.
Mr Burne began eating healthier and replaced his weekend drinking sessions with a weekly two kilometre walk. As his fitness improved he was able to increase the walk to three times a week.
He said: “Me and my wife love walking together. Having my family helping me out was a great source of strength.”
“Every time I dropped a waist size felt like an achievement. It’s costing me a fortune in new clothes, but I’m glad of the expense.
“My wife loved me when I was at the larger weight but she is loving how I look now even more. I’m doing so much more with the kids and around the house too.
“My life has changed. I have a totally different mindset now. I’m more positive and confident.”
Before beginning his weight loss, he typically ate a large all day breakfast sandwich, then a steak and kidney pie for lunch. For dinner he would often eat oven chips and chicken and would snack on chocolate bars throughout the day.
Eight pints of Guinness – Mr Byrne usual indulgence on a Saturday night – amounts to around 1,600 calories. By cutting out the pints, he removed in one stroke the equivalent of almost an entire day’s recommended calorie intake from his weekly diet.
Today, he typically eats a piece of fruit and porridge for his breakfast. For lunch he will have a ham salad sandwich with more fruit. For dinner he now goes for the healthy option of fish with boiled vegetables in smaller portions. If he wants to snack, he will have an orange or banana.
He said he will stick to his new habit of replacing pub trips with visits to the local sports centre.
He said: “I drank loads of Guinness at the weekend. I would always order it at the bar – it was the only pint I enjoyed.
“I now go to the gym three times a week and do spin classes whenever I can. I go out running, love cycling and can do a 50km ride with no problems.
“I just completed a mountain challenge which involved covering 67km through kayaking, cycling and running. It took me seven hours, but I completed the course.
“The idea of having this quality of life was unthinkable when I was overweight but I know this is only part of my journey.
“I’m going to keep eating properly, exercising and laying off the Guinness.”
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