‘I went home and literally cried’: The nasty comment that inspired Tom (52) to shed more than 7st
Published 22/09/2016 | 12:27
An Irish man who once tipped the scales at 20st has opened up about the mean comment at a party that motivated him to turn his life around.
Tom Mulhall (52) from Dun Laoghaire revealed that it was a remark made about his weight that inspired him to tackle his health head on and sign up to the Dublin Marathon.
“My pregnant sister-in-law stood up and someone said: ‘I didn’t know you were here, you must have been in Tom’s shadow.’ I made my excuses, went home and literally cried,” he said speaking to The Sunday World Magazine.
“The very next day, I signed up to compete in the Dublin Marathon, which was only three months later. I wanted to show them,” said Tom.
The businessman revealed that he hardly recognised himself in photos taken on a golf trip to Portugal in 2009, which spurred him to join Slimming World.
“A golfing trip to Portugal gave me the wake-up call to tackle my weight. At more than 20st, I hadn’t wanted to go because I felt self-conscious, and when I saw the photos afterwards I couldn’t believe how big I looked. I felt so low that I considered having a gastric band fitted.
“Luckily, though, I discovered Slimming World instead – and thank goodness I did! I used to refuse to wear the green jacket that goes with my role as golf club captain because I thought it made me look like the Incredible Hulk... it goes round me twice now,” he said.
The father and granddad admitted that his family was a huge motivation behind his dramatic transformation and he wanted to be the best he could be for his grandchildren.
“When I joined Slimming World I said I wanted to be able get on the floor and play with my grandchildren when they arrive, I can proudly say I can do that with my grandson Luke, who is now two.
Shifting more than 7st has also worked wonders on Tom’s confidence, which he said was non-existent before.
“I would crack a joke about myself, no matter how sad I was inside. It was as if I was sitting inside my old self, and the real me didn’t have the confidence to come out.
"Now, I’ll try anything. I’ve done a rock-face climb, I’ve done a marathon. There’s no way I’d have tried any of that before. To the old me, a marathon was the chocolate bar that changed its name. I used to wonder if I was paranoid, as when I was at my biggest I always felt I was the subject of most people’s conversations. Now, it’s gone the other way; I know they’re talking about me, and it’s in a good way,” he said.