Mike’s Story

Mike lost over 6st* with LighterLife Total – as featured on ITV’s hit show This Time Next Year

  • Total weight lost: 6st 3lb*
  • Weight loss plan: Total
  • Followed by ManagementMike Harman

“At 37, having being type 2 diabetic for some years, I had a routine health check and was told point blank that I wouldn’t make 40. I had three years left to live if I kept going the way I was. I was devastated – I was thinking about my kids, my wife, everyone but myself. I got home and was watching This Time Next Year on the television, and I knew this is what I needed to lose weight. I emailed the show, told them what was going on and they asked to see me.

When I first weighed in with the production company I was 21st and I wanted to hit the 15st mark. In January 2017, when I started my weight-loss journey and applied for the show, I weighed in at 22st. Seven months later, in July 2017, after trying to cut down on calories on my own for seven months, I had lost 1.5st and was now 19st 7lb.

This was when it all started going wrong. For the next two months, I didn’t gain weight, but I also didn’t lose any either. I had signed up to a weekly football club which was designed for men like me who wanted to lose weight and get fit. I was weighed every Thursday, to be told week in and week out that I had maintained. On the eighth consecutive week of maintaining, I was incredibly fed up.

The following week was school holidays, I was off work for ten days and had some plans made with the family. Before I knew it, I had gained half a stone in just 10 days. Four weeks later, I was back up to 21st 7lb.  Not only had I gained, I had gone past my starting weight. I broke down, and I was giving up. I sent a video into the production company and told them I didn’t want to do it anymore. I was broken, emotional and felt I had let everyone down – myself, my family, my children and the production company.

Change of direction

The production company didn’t want me to quit, they approached me with LighterLife and, at first, I was sceptical. I was worried that if I couldn’t do it through a healthy diet and exercise, why was this going to be different? I started, albeit with hesitation, but after losing my first stone in a month with LighterLife Total, I was so motivated to continue.

My life, and job, is manic. I have four kids at home, and I never know what I’m doing in the office until I’m there, so the LighterLife Foodpacks were a convenient and easy way to keep my energy levels up when I was on the road, without having to worry about what I was going to eat, and when.

But what really helped was the cognitive behavioural therapies (CBT) LighterLife uses. Much like the football group, my group and mentorship made me accountable for everything, but what helped more was that I could use the time to share ideas and advice with other men going through a similar journey to me. 

The big reveal

When I went back to film the show a year later, I had only been on LighterLife for four months and had lost 4st 7lb. During the full year I had lost, gained and lost again – weight loss really is a rollercoaster journey. I remember walking out for my “after” interview and being met by a massive applause. I knew I had lost weight but seeing Davina’s reaction made me realise how noticeable it was!

As you can imagine, the feeling was incredible. In 2017, I was dealing with the diagnosis that I had just three years to live. Now, ten months on from the show I have continued to lose weight with LighterLife and I am now under my initial goal of 15 stone, I am the happiest, and healthiest, I’ve ever been.

I cannot thank LighterLife enough because without their support, guidance and mentorship none of this would have been possible. This has not only changed my life, but it’s fair to say it has saved my life.

One of the physical side effects of the weight gain that I noticed was that I couldn’t keep up with my children anymore. We would spend time walking round one of our favourite parks together and I always had to stop at least three or four times. It was when the kids started noticing and saying things like – “look dads had to stop again” – that I realised things needed to change.  It makes me sad looking back and seeing the amount of time I couldn’t get involved with the kids.

My wife and I welcomed our fifth child in January 2019 and I’m looking forward to spending as much time as possible running after all of them. I genuinely feel like I’ve been given a second chance and I’m going to enjoy every moment of it.”

 

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