This Valentine’s Day was very different from previous ones for Paul Carney.
The life of the 38-year-old barman from Castlebar has taken a dramatic turn for the better. Having been overweight most of his life, Paul never had a relationship. However, everything changed once he shed 16 stone 8lb in excess weight.
“I had no life when I was overweight," Paul says. "I’d always try and find an excuse not to do things, shy away from the world. I knew my health was a ticking time bomb. My nephew was getting married. I hated weddings as I knew I would just end up sitting in the corner not enjoying the day. I said to myself this one would be different. I had nine months to get ready. My sister Bernie had done really well with Motivation Weight Management. I thought, if she can do it I can.”
Paul met Motivation Weight Management in April 2011, weighing in at 28 stone 1.5lb. Today, Paul weighs just 11 stone 7.5lb. “Before the weight loss I felt ashamed and embarrassed of myself," he says. "When I went to shops, I parked as close as possible to the shop door and go in and out as quickly as possible so that people wouldn’t stare at me. It was pointless chatting to women when I was that overweight. Dating is very hard for larger people. It’s no life.”
Paul met Clare Gilsenan two years ago while socialising: “We were definitely meant to be, our personalities are so similar," Paul says. "We both have a quirky sense of humour and I just think Clare is gorgeous. I proposed to Clare last August on Mulranny Beach and she said 'yes'. We are very happy. We have a whole life planned together, marriage, kids, the works. This would never have happened if I hadn’t lost the weight.”
Robin Smith of Motivation Weight Management, Castlebar, says: “Paul is is one of those people whose weight loss has been utterly life transforming. It just shows what can be achieved by someone when they put their mind to it. Paul’s reasons for eating were emotional and he had never recognised this. Once he conquered the reasons why he was overeating, he went all the way.”
To find out more about the Motivation Weight Management approach to weight loss, go to www.motivation.ie