An insurance worker from Wales who once feared he would not allow photographs at his wedding due to his weight is now set to marry his boyfriend with confidence after they lost nine stone together since Christmas last year.
Nicky Everton, 34, from Barry, in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, had always struggled with his weight, but by December 2021 weighed 19st, at 5ft 11in tall, and was wearing a size 40-inch waist.
Nicky said he felt miserable and avoided eating out with his partner of 14 years, Adam Spear, 37, who was himself 20st at 5ft 11 inches.
The turning point came when Nicky was tagged on social media in his work team’s Christmas drinks photos and he was horrified at how big he had become.
Nicky vowed to change but struggled to ditch the pounds in the New Year until Adam pushed his partner to join him at the weight loss organisation Slimming World.
Now the couple have lost a staggering nine stone together and are set to get married next year.
“I don’t think I would have got married at the size I was or there would have been no photos at my wedding,” said Nicky.
“It was horrible seeing myself in that Christmas photo. When I looked in the mirror I never saw that person.”
Struggling with his weight since he was a child, Nicky had always tried various diets but nothing ever stuck and his confidence sank to a new low.
“My weight yo-yoed through the years, and I just sort of lost my confidence,” he said.
“I stopped looking at myself I guess; I would just sort of glance at the mirror and I wouldn’t really pay attention.
“I weighed 19 stone, was wearing a 40 inch waist and extra large tops – but they were getting tight.”
In December 2021, as he flicked through festive snaps from a work Christmas party, Nicky was horrified by the person looking back at him – unable to comprehend how big he had become.
“I would always make excuses and wouldn’t go on nights out,” Nicky said.
“But this time I said yes and I got tagged in photos. I was horrified.
“I actually saw myself properly and I couldn’t believe I had got to that weight.”
Despite Nicky’s vow to ditch the pounds, his weight stagnated, forcing Adam to intervene and change the couple’s foody habits for good – joining Slimming World in January 2022 at Buttrills Community Centre in Barry.
“Even though I’d seen those photos of myself over Christmas, I was like, ‘Oh well, I’ll deal with it after Christmas now’,” said Nicky.
“But it was actually Adam who pushed me to go, as he could see how much it was affecting me.
“He suggested joining Slimming World, but I was a bit reluctant to go. I thought I would try and lose weight myself.
“When Adam said he was going anyway it made me realise I didn’t want him to start without me – so it really motivated me to join.”
Switching their carb-heavy evening meals and ditching the sweet treats for healthy alternatives, Nicky soon felt healthier than ever – losing an astounding five stone.
“It felt great to be in a room with everyone who was also struggling with their weight,” said Nicky.
“I hit target in October this year, it felt amazing. It felt so far away at the time, but since losing the weight my confidence has really grown.
“Adam and I go out to eat more and we do a lot more together now because of it.
“I now weigh 14 stone and wear a 34 inch waist and size medium. I’m back in clothes I wore when I was 21 years old.
“Adam has lost four stone two pounds altogether, and is now 15 stone 12 pounds.”
In September this year Nicky was overjoyed when Adam proposed.
“We had a health scare in the summer,” explained Nicky.
“Adam had a lump in his mouth and the doctors were concerned it was cancer. Luckily it was benign, but I think it made us rethink everything.
“We’d been together so long and coupled with losing weight and the health scare it definitely made him think more about our future.”
Adam popped the question in “simply the best” way, according to Nicky.
“I’m a big Tina Turner fan,” said Nicky.
“So we went up to London to watch the musical, Tina. We stayed in this really fancy hotel and he proposed in the room.
“We’re hoping to get married in September 2023 on our 15th anniversary.
“Losing weight together has really bonded us. I’m so glad Adam made me go to Slimming World.”
Also, four stone lighter himself, Adam does not regret pushing his partner into Slimming World.
Adam said: “We’ve always been very open and honest.
“I approached Slimming World with Nicky and I could tell he was quite nervous about going. I had to really encourage him.
“When I said I’m going to go by myself, I think that was what finally spurred him into action because he’d feel like he was like missing something.
“I was exactly 20 stone. It was really the lockdown that caused my weight gain, we were at home so much and sometimes the only bit of excitement would be food based.
“I’ve lost four stone so far and now weigh 15 stone 12 pounds. I think doing Slimming world together has really bonded us.”
Now, Adam cannot wait to marry Nicky.
“During the cancer scare it did focus my mind on the future. We’ve been together 14 years now and I just thought it was time.
“It did change our relationship for the better.”
With festive temptations, Adam and Nicky say they will “take it a little easier” with their slimming plans over Christmas – but they are determined to keep the weight down.
“We are going to take it a little easier over Christmas,” said Adam.
“There’s so many things to celebrate this year, but Slimming World is going to be something that we were going to do for the rest of our lives now.”
– Nicky’s diet before
Breakfast: Belvita biscuits
Lunch: Meal deal – sandwich, crisps, Innocent smoothie
Dinner: Pizza/pasta dish
Evening snack: Bag of Maltesers
– Nicky’s diet now
Breakfast: Overnight oats, cherries, raspberries
Lunch: Slimming World all day breakfast lunch pot
Dinner: Lasagne and home-made chips
Snacks: Fruit, marshmallow bar