Dad who was once homeless loses five stone following the 'darkest months' of his life
An Irish man who was once homeless and living in emergency accommodation with his young family said that food became his only comfort during an extremely dark time, causing his weight to skyrocket to more than 17 stone (107kg).
In 2014, Ian Colton (25) and his two children Jamie (7) and Bobby (5) were one of the many families around the country living in a hotel room and the dad said he became something of a recluse, hiding away from the world as the pounds piled on.
“I hit a really dark and lonely place in 2014. I was extremely overweight and unemployed, trying to be a father to my two beautiful boys. I knew I was gaining weight but I chose to ignore it. I’d sit on the hotel bed every night with my meal deal for one and it became such a lonely time.
“When my boys finished school for the summer I had no reason to even leave the room and I felt like the four walls were closing in on me,” said Ian, who is from Dublin.
At his heaviest, the dad-of-two weighed 17.5 stone (111kg) , and said he became extremely self conscious.
“I grew a lot of facial hair and hid behind an XXXL rain coat and cotton shorts. This was now my life. I hadn’t even put up a photo on social media for months because I was so self conscious,” he said.
After seven months, Ian and his children moved out of emergency accommodation and into a home on Dublin’s Sherriff Street. On the lookout for love, the Dublin dad met the girl of his dreams on a dating app, who ultimately transformed his life in more ways than one.
Having lost stones through Slimming World in the past, Ian’s new girlfriend Sarah-Jane encouraged him to join the programme and he has now lost more than five stone (31kg).
“I stepped on the scale my first day in and I couldn’t believe I was 17.5 stone, I had been hiding myself for so long behind everything I could now see the number staring at me right in the face. I instantly felt all them lumps and bumps you shouldn’t,” he said.
Sceptical of the programme the dad was shocked to discover he had lost nine pounds after one week and is getting set to open his own group in Dublin 1 in the New Year.
“I’m the skinniest I’ve been since my teens. I buy all the latest fashion and I’m a small in everything. I’ve ditched the XXXL jacket and I don’t dread shopping anymore. My life has done a 360 degree flip.”