Suffolk man is top slimmer

WHEN hefty trucker Malcolm Bird found out he needed an urgent operation there was just one problem – doctors told him that there was no operating table which could take his 25 stone weight.

WHEN hefty trucker Malcolm Bird found out he needed an urgent operation there was just one problem – doctors told him that there was no operating table which could take his 25 stone weight.

But Mr Bird, 59, known as 'Spud', refused to give in, and embarked on a slimming quest which has left him literally half the man he used to be.

His dieting efforts are set to be rewarded today , when he will be named Slimming World's 'Man of the Year 2003'.

Mr Bird will travel to the Ritz Hotel in London from his home in Bedingfield Crescent, Halesworth, to receive the award.


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He explained how his weight caused him embarrassment at work and how he had to be lifted by a fork lift truck just to rope up his cargo.

He added: "I knew my health was suffering as a result of my weight - I could barely walk 200 yards without a breather.

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"The stress of the weight on my joints was unbearable, and the bones in my knees were literally crumbling away. I tried all sorts of diets and put myself through misery just to shed a few pounds. But it was a visit to the doctor that really shocked me into losing weight for good."

Doctors told him he needed an urgent operation on his knee but as he was 'morbidly obese', the procedure had to be shelved because a suitably sturdy operating table could not be found.

Spurred on by shock, Mr Bird joined his local Slimming World class 18 months ago and has not looked back since.

He is now down to 14st 6lbs – a loss of an incredible 11st 2lbs – and his waist measurement has fallen by 22 inches.

Best of all, his transformation has led doctors to discover that the operation for his knee problems is no longer needed.

"I had tried so many diets before all the lads at work laughed and said that there was no way I could stick to it," Mr Bird said.

"But life is absolutely brilliant now – I feel like a different person. I can get into all the cabs at work with no problem and I certainly don't need an extra lift to get my job done anymore."

His slimming success has been mirrored by the other members of his family.

Wife Jenny, who joined the slimming group with Mr Bird, has shed more than four stone while daughters Tracey and Gemma are a combined eight stone lighter.

Speaking in January, Mrs Bird said: "People just walk past us – they don't recognise us."

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