By Emika Berry

YEARS of anxiety-fuelled comfort eating led Mark to morbid obesity by the age of 21

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Videographer / director: Barcroft Studios / Future Publishing

Producer: Emika Berry, James Thorne

Editor: James Thorne

At his heaviest, he weighed 330lbs and after ‘too many rejections’ from girls he decided to diet and exercise the pounds off. Mark, 38, of St Albans, dropped 112lbs in 10 months, however, he did not tackle the root of the problem - his mental health. By the age of 28, the weight had crept back on after Mark turned to food and excessive drinking, telling himself he was not good enough. After losing his job and splitting with his girlfriend, Mark decided to change. Mark told Truly: “It was from that point onwards that I went on a journey of self-discovery to understand myself better so that eventually if I felt better about myself, that need to comfort eat, to drink alcohol and escape reality, I wouldn’t need to do it anymore, and as a result of that I would lose all the weight.” With the help of therapy as well as a nutritional diet and exercise, he lost a total of 140lbs. Mark thought this would help him find love but the initial euphoria of being ‘shredded’ wore off. Mark now weighs 195lbs and says he is living a more balanced life. He qualified as a personal trainer and life coach to help others on their fitness journeys. He said: “To inspire them to change their life, in a way like I have, it just feels incredible.” In May 2017 Mark met Zoë, 32, and the couple are now planning their wedding. Zoë said: “I’m really proud of Mark. I believe I’m his biggest fan.”