With his self-confidence at rock bottom and his waistline expanding into yet another trouser size, teenager Chris Clark decided enough was enough.
The 18-year-old and his mum, Marguerite, decided to join the Slimming World group in Copnor, a move which would transform his life.
Eight months on and the Portsmouth student has lost 5st 2lb and been voted Young Slimmer of the Year 2014 by his fellow club members.
He is now looking forward to the National Finals in Derby this weekend where he could be in with a chance of winning £2000.
Chris, from Portsmouth, says he no longer feels like the odd one out among his friends and is leading a much more active and rewarding lifestyle.
‘I go to the gym now – which you would never have got me doing before,’ says the teenager, who admits he frequently tried to get out of PE lessons at school.
Chris, who faced bullying and missed out on a lot of activities, decided to take action when he went up another trouser size.
‘The final straw was seeing my waistline expand beyond my 44-inch waisted trouser,’ he says. ‘They had become too small and I knew I needed help.
‘My mum knew I was getting upset about it and we decided to join Slimming World together.’
Chris says Marguerite has given him tremendous support – and the proud mum has also lost two stone and slimmed down to a size 10 in the process.
Chris’s weight loss has not only boosted his confidence but his physical health too.
One of the teenager’s legs is longer than the other which affects the way he walks and means he needs physiotherapy.
Since losing the weight, his walk has improved and he no longer needs hospital treatment.
Chris has blossomed since dropping from over 16st to under 12st. He says: ‘I love being able to wear the same clothes as my friends and enjoy going out with them more now.’
The competition recognises the achievements of Slimming World members between the ages of 16 and 21, who have changed their lives by adopting healthier eating habits.
For information visit slimmingworld.com.