Local man Fergus Rowan has officially been named as The Shamrock Lodge Slimming World Group’s Mr Sleek after losing 4 stone 3 lbs with Slimming World.
Fergus lost his weight after joining Sinead Morris’s Slimming World group in The Shamrock Lodge Hotel. And he says he was delighted to receive the award: “I was really flattered that the other members chose me as their Mr Sleek. As a man, joining a slimming club was a big decision and very nerve-wracking – I expected to the only man there – but I can honestly say it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done and this is just the icing on the cake.”
The Mr Sleek competition recognises male slimmers who have undergone a transformation since joining Slimming World and rediscovered their lust for life, as well as looking great in a sharp suit.
Before joining Slimming World in November 2014, Fergus had been diagnosed as borderline diabetic. He also had high cholesterol, and had a lot of back pain as the extra weight caused huge problems to his existing scholiosis condition (curvature of the spine ). Fergus says “I was also very unfit - I’d have struggled to walk 300 yards - and I was constantly tired.
“After a visit to the doctor where I found out my diabetes reading and cholesterol were way too high, I knew I had to make a change. I’d heard about Slimming World before from family members, so I knew it worked, but I was still worried because I thought it would just be me and a roomful of women. Actually that wasn’t far from the truth, although I was pleasantly surprised to see some other men there. It didn’t matter though because everyone was so friendly and it only took a few weeks before I felt right at home. I’m so glad I didn’t let my nerves stop me from losing weight and I’d recommend Slimming World to everyone – men and women.”
He began following Slimming World’s Food Optimising eating plan and started filling up on healthy home-cooked meals. Fergus says: “I used to think that losing weight meant eating nothing but salad and having to eat small portions, which definitely didn’t appeal to me. Food Optimising isn’t a diet though, it’s a lifestyle change. I mainly still eat the same meals that I did beforehand, roast dinners, steaks, salmon, etc, but I make them in a more healthy way now like using low calorie cooking spray instead of oil or butter and I eat a lot more fruit and veg. I expected to feel hungry but in my first week I couldn’t believe how much I was eating and I still lost 4.5 lbs. I haven’t looked back since.”
Since then Fergus has lost a total of 4st 3lbs. He’s become much more active too and walks three miles daily now. “I’m fitter, healthier both physically and mentally, and my clothes are much smaller and smarter!”
Sinead, who runs the groups in the Shamrock Lodge and Garrycastle GAA Club each week, hopes Fergus will inspire other men in the Athlone area who want to lose weight: “Men might think that coming to a slimming club is a bit ‘girly’. I hope Fergus will show that lots of different people come along to our groups and each and every one gets a warm and friendly welcome. It doesn’t matter if you’re a man or a woman, young or old, because ultimately we’re all there for the same reason – to lose weight and to feel healthier and more confident and to be able to do more with our families and friends.
“As Fergus proves, whether you’ve got a little or a lot of weight to lose, slimming down can make a big difference to how you feel about yourself and really boost your confidence. We’re all super proud of his achievements!”
Everyone’s welcome at the Sinead’s Slimming World groups at The Shamrock Lodge Hotel every Tuesday at 5.30pm and 7.30pm and in Garrycastle GAA Club every Saturday morning at 10am. Simply come along on the day or for more information call Sinead on (087 ) 6820759.