West Lothian man names Slimmer of the Year

Robert Robertson after his weight loss. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
Robert Robertson after his weight loss. Picture: Phil Wilkinson
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A TRUCK driver has been left half the man he used to be – after finding himself too big to play with his granddaughter in her wendy house.

Robert Robertson was named Male Slimmer of the Year at the inaugural All About Weight awards after taking 20 inches off his waist and losing 9st 6lbs in less than 18 months.

The 58-year-old, from Whitburn, West Lothian, weighed 20st 11lbs when he started the programme in January last year – and says that despite being in the army he was now in the best shape of his life.

He said: “I’ve probably tried every diet going over the years, but it was a combination of factors that made me decide that this time it had to work. I had very high cholesterol, and was starting to suffer serious chest and breathing problems.

“I would wake up just about every night gasping for breath and my doctor told me I was extremely high risk for sleep apnoea, which would have meant I would have had to sleep wearing an oxygen mask.

“The breathing problems were already causing me to snore very loudly and my poor wife Nancy was really suffering between that and the panicked wake-ups.

“Then, to top it all off, when my grand-daughter got a Wendy house for Christmas she wanted us all to come in and play – and I couldn’t fit through the door.”

‘Couldn’t buy clothes in shops’

Robert was a driver for the Royal Scots from 1975 to 1982 and qualified for his HGV licence 20 years ago after being made redundant from a steel firm. The crunch point in his battle with the bulge came when daughter Hazel recommended he try All About Weight, which had helped her lose two stone.

He said: “I couldn’t even buy clothes from the shops, I had to order them from special catalogues. It was also starting to affect me at work – the drivers’ cabs are quite high up and I was starting to struggle to get in and also to fit in the seats comfortably.

“Starting a diet is always a bit of an adjustment, but once I got into the swing of it, it was absolutely fine.

“Most people worry when they diet they’ll feel hungry all the time and I was concerned about that, as it was all the nibbling between meals that I think really did me the most damage, but I have to say I very rarely felt hungry.”

Robert, who says he still follows the diet “80 per cent of the time”, says he’s been given a new lease of life.

“I’ve had friends walk right past me because they don’t recognise me now – it’s incredible. And I feel great. I walk three miles every night now and I absolutely love it. I also drink lots of water – that’s very important.”

Wife Nancy, 57, said the weight loss had made her husband “a completely different man”, adding: “I was a bit sceptical at first as he’d tried dieting before but this time it really worked.

“The weight just flew off him. ”

Robert’s diet

Before

• Breakfast: sandwiches comprising six slices of bread.

• 10am-lunch: a couple of pies and two or three packets of crisps.

• Lunch: two pies and two rolls in bacon or sausage.

• Dinner: large portions of mince and potatoes/burger and chips.

• After dinner: “constant” snacking on biscuits, crisps and “whatever I could get my hands on”.

Now

• Breakfast: one of the programme milkshakes.

• Lunch: one of the programme soups.

• 3pm: “I try to vary what I eat but I would have something like two spoonfuls of mashed potato and two small pieces of chicken.

“I can still eat nice things, it’s just all about the portion size. A breast of chicken will now last me about three days.”

• Dinner: “Again, for dinner something light, like one of the chicken curries provided by the programme.”

• After 7pm: “I NEVER eat after 7pm, that’s usually when I go for my walk. During the course of the day I will also drink about three litres of water.”