One man from Ireland just opened up about his weight-loss journey and the emotional struggle that many people can relate to when trying to drop pounds. On the outside, Ger Fleming was "the jolly party boy," but deep down, he was suffering from major anxiety. While many people had talked to him about his weight, it wasn't until three and a half years ago, at his heaviest weight, that he truly wanted to change his lifestyle habits. Ger took to Facebook to post an applause-worthy transformation photo, where he reflected on his journey in the most uplifting way possible.
"Everyone means well and is full of great advice but unless you really want to do it for yourself there's no talking to ya," he wrote. "It's been a tough couple of years, not just physically but emotionally as well. Some days you wake saying 'Why do I even bother' but you just have to get up and get through it. It's not as simple as 'Eat less and do a bit of exercise' you have to understand yourself how you ended up where you are & ensure you don't fall back into old habits."
But it wasn't just about weight for Ger; it was about his happiness and mental state, as well. He explained that he "ate" his problems away and confidently hid his anxieties behind the party-boy antics, but there were emotional problems deep down.
Ger told Independent.ie it was an incident on an airplane that truly made him realize it was time to take control of his health. "Before we took off, an air hostess asked me if I needed a seat belt extender," he explained. "It was really embarrassing and I made a pact with myself to just get that sorted when I got home."
He started losing weight and eventually came out as gay to his family and friends. Slowly but surely, the pieces of his life started coming back together. In 2015, Ger met his partner Mark Sherwood and they have been together ever since. Now, 70 pounds later, he's reflecting on the whole journey.
"I'm the happiest I've ever been and in love with the man of my dreams," Ger wrote on Facebook. "Don't get me wrong I've fallen off the wagon a couple of times and hoovered one too many Burger Kings but these last few weeks I've really got back on track and feel great training and eating healthy. I took the picture on the right a couple of days ago. 3.5 years later and 5 stone down."
The 27-year-old Dublin man closes his note with some advice to anyone struggling emotionally or physically like he was: "I write this post not for likes or attention but with the intention that someone reads it & hopefully gets some kind of motivation from it or, it helps someone in anyway who is/was in a similar predicament or situation. When you feel like giving up remember why you started. Nobody can do it for you. You have to do it for yourself x."