A painful case of kidney stones caused a Wearside dad-of-three to embark on an incredible weight-loss journey which has seen him shed almost nine stones.
Sunderland man Ryan Turley, 33, tipped the scales at 22st 13lbs back in August 2017.
But after having to go into hospital for surgery to remove kidney stones he immediately started on a mission to get fitter with amazing results.
Over the past 18 months he has ditched takeaways such as kebabs, Chinese and pizzas as well as his “downfall” which were crisps and fizzy drinks in favour of low-fat meals while also getting outside to play football regularly and go on walks.
The dad-of-three now admits he is regularly told by pals he looks “half the man he used to be”.
“I had to have a camera put inside me to remove the kidney stones and they had to look at my kidneys to see if there were any other problems,” said Ryan, of Ryhope, who is dad to John-Joe, 12, Alfie-Eric, 10, and Darcie-Rae, four.
“That was the warning that I needed to change my life.
“I was eating far too many takeaways and to be honest I’d become lazy. The weight just crept up on me.
“It’s much easier to phone up and order a takeaway when you have kids and it’s more convenient.”
Ryan began eating low-calorie, low-fat foods and started walking with family, including wife Lizzie, 30, and playing football at Goals Football Centre at Bede in Sunderland each Sunday with his team Beach Boys.
He is now down to 14st 3lbs, just 3lbs from his final target of getting down to 14st.
“I’m feeling so much better,” said Ryan.
“I’ve got a lot more energy and I’m not as fatigued as I used to be.
“I don’t just sit and do nothing like I did before and a lot of people I know say I’m half the man I used to be, which I suppose I really am.”
Ryan is a full-time carer for Alfie-Eric, who has epilepsy, ADHD and a developmental delay condition.
“My advice to anyone wanting to lose weight is just to make a start,” said Ryan.
“Once you lost that first pound, you realise you can do it. There’s no reason you can’t.
“You don’t need to join an expensive gym, you can just go out for a walk to get started.
“It’s not just losing weight though, you need to change your whole lifestyle.
“You have to change everything.”
What Ryan’s diet used to look like:
Breakfast of bacon, sausage, eggs and beans or a bacon sandwich
Lunch of fish and chips or a pasty or fast food such as McDonald’s or KFC
Evening meal of either a kebab, Chinese, pizza or Indian takeaway
Snacks throughout the day would be crisps and fizzy drinks
What he eats now:
Breakfast of cereal or porridge with fruit included
For lunch a salad or a portion of pasta
Evening meal of pork, chicken or fish with rice
Snacks are now in the form of fibre bars or fruit