18-stone takeaway addict who was warned he had years to live is now a fitness model at 62 – and feels more youthful than he did in his twenties
- Ex-software salesman Chris Zaremba, 62, from London, is now a personal trainer
- Addicted to takeaway, he weighed 18 stone as he approached his 50th birthday
- Doctors told him his habits would send him to an early grave so he lost six stone
A man who weighed 18 stone and was told by doctors that he wouldn’t make his 60th birthday is now a top fitness model.
Retired software salesman Chris Zaremba, 62, from London is ‘unrecognisable’ from the man he was 10 years ago, after kicking his addiction to takeaways and joining a gym.
As he approached his 50th birthday, Chris, now a personal trainer, was warned by medics that his habit of eating just Pizza Hut and McDonald’s would send him into an early grave.
Terrified into action, Chris quickly changed his ways and lost six stone, and by 55 he’d won an international fitness modelling competition. He now feels younger in his sixties than he did at 20.
Retired software salesman Chris Zaremba (pictured right), 62, is now a personal trainer and is ‘unrecognisable’ from the man he was 10 years ago (pictured left), having shed six stone
After being told he needed to change his ways by doctors, Chris (pictured in a London gym recently) set about changing his ways and by 55 had won an international fitness modelling competition
He said: ‘When doctors told me that I might not make it to 60 if I carried on with my usual eating habits, I never dreamed I would soon be walking onto the stage of an international fitness competition and walking back off with a trophy.
‘I spent most of my life avoiding exercise and sport as much as I could, and spent the majority of my time in places like Pizza Hut and McDonalds.
‘By the time I got to 50 I had elevated blood pressure, I was nearly diabetic and I was classed as obese.
Chris pictured before his weight loss transformation. He said he now feels younger in his sixties than he did at 20
Chris pictured with an award after competing in an international fitness modelling competition
Chris (pictured now) said: ‘I spent most of my life avoiding exercise and sport as much as I could, and spent the majority of my time in places like Pizza Hut and McDonalds’
‘The doctor told me unless I changed my ways he couldn’t guarantee I’d be around for my 60th birthday and that thought really scared me – it was the kick up the backside that I needed.’
Chris soon changed his diet and started hitting the gym, dropping an incredible six stone by the time he reached age 55.
Eventually, his lifestyle intervention became a hobby rather than a necessity, with personal trainers (PTs) encouraging him to compete in modelling competitions.
Since then, Chris has earned himself an array of awards to decorate his trophy cabinet.
Chris pictured in a bodybuilding modelling competition in September 2017. He came fifth place in the over 50s category
Weighing 18 stone as he (pictured left) approached his 50th birthday, Chris (pictured now, right), was told by doctors his addiction to Pizza Hut and McDonald’s would send him to an early grave
Chris said his new found love of fitness has helped him in other parts of his life – such as enjoying more time with his wife Jenny, 48 (pictured together)
He said: ‘The first time I couldn’t go to the gym, I was on a business trip, and I really missed it. That’s when I knew I wasn’t doing it because I had to, it was because I wanted to.
‘When a PT told me I should enter one of the fitness modelling competitions, I told him never in a million years, but only a few months later I’d changed my mind and I was getting onto the stage.
‘I entered the Miami Pro Fitness Modelling World Championships and I won first place in the over 50s class. I couldn’t believe it, I was hooked.’
But he said his new found love of fitness has helped him in other parts of his life – such as enjoying more time with his wife Jenny, 48.
Chris (pictured recently in a London gym) changed his diet and started hitting the gym, dropping an incredible six stone by the time he reached age 55
Eventually, his lifestyle intervention became a hobby rather than a necessity, with personal trainers (PTs) encouraging him to compete in modelling competitions
Since then, Chris (pictured second from left) has earned himself an array of awards to decorate his trophy cabinet
Now happily retired from his former office job, PT Chris says he now has a jobby – a hobby that pays – and says his only regret is not finding fitness sooner (pictured left, before his weight loss and right, after)
‘Ten years ago I couldn’t run for a bus but now Jenny and I have run seven marathons together,’ Chris explained.
Chris’ average daily diet before and after his weight loss
Breakfast: Sugar puffs
Lunch: Fish or fried chicken and chips
Dinner: A takeaway such as McDonalds Big Mac or Pizza Hut large pizza
Drinks: Full sugar Coca Cola, 4/5 pints of beer
Breakfast: Porridge with water and fruit
Lunch: An omelette or salad
Dinner: Chicken and vegetables
Drinks: Water, 2/3 protein shakes
‘We compete in triathlons and we go on walking holidays.
‘She has been away from fitness activities for over a year due to injury, but I know I’ll be ready to join in again on these with her when she recovers.’
He continued: ‘I look at old photos and I don’t even recognise myself.
‘People come to visit the house and they ask who that man is in the pictures with Jenny – she always jokes that it’s her first husband but he was just a fatter version of me.
‘It’s rare that a single day goes by where I don’t do some kind of exercise now.’
Now happily retired from his former office job, PT Chris says he now has a jobby – a hobby that pays – and says his only regret is not finding fitness sooner.
He said: ‘The only regret I have is that it took me 50 years to discover the benefits of being fit, but you can’t change the past and I’m so grateful that I found it eventually.’
Chris on holiday with his wife Jenny before his transformation. The couple now regularly exercise together
Chris (pictured left, training) has an impressive selection of awards (pictured right) from his modelling competitions
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