By Jasmine Kazlauskas
A morbidly obese dad who feared his 8,000 calorie a day addiction to fast food would KILL HIM has dropped nearly 11 stone to see his son grow up.
Back in 2015, Tony Reyes said he had reached his ‘lowest point’ after tipping the scales at his heaviest weight of 29 stone– while he was wearing size 54 pants and massive 6XL shirts.
The 32-year-old from Orange County, California, USA, said he had been overweight his entire life and was constantly bullied in school due to his size – with a cruel classmate even ‘gifting’ him a sports bra in the 8th grade as a mean prank.
The dad-of-one’s eating habits were out of control and he had a serious addiction to fast food – often gorging 8,000 calories worth of burgers, fries, pizzas, cookies, chocolate and ice cream daily.
Tony hid his calorific binges from his teacher wife Meredith, 32, who would often make him a healthy dinner to aid in his weight loss – but had no idea her husband had eaten so poorly throughout the day.
But after Meredith fell pregnant with their son Ryder, now 18 months, Tony said he knew he had to do everything he could to stay alive to see his son grow up.
The inspirational dad’s dedication to transform his life and get healthy has paid off, with Tony dropping 10st 7lbs and seven pant sizes.
Although he says he still has a long way to go, Tony is now healthier than he has ever been before and can easily run around after his son with his new slimmed down 18st 5lbs physique.
Filmmaker and photographer Tony said: “I’ve been overweight ever since I was a kid and was bullied throughout all my time in school because of it.
“I’ll never forget with I was in the 8th grade, and one boy came up to me with a ‘present’ he had for me. I opened it in front of everyone, and it was a sports bra.
“I was so humiliated. They all just made fun of me even harder after that and it badly damaged my self-esteem.
“My wife and I were kicked off the Harry Potter ride at Universal Studios for my 30th birthday because the chest bar couldn’t close over my body. I was just too fat for it.
“As soon as I got out of sight of other people, I burst into tears. My wife has always been fit, so to take that experience away from her as we left the ride really hurt.
“I felt disgusted with myself and completely broken.
“I’d tried to lose weight on and off over the years, but once Meredith became pregnant, I knew I had to get serious if I wanted to see my son grow up.
“I could feel the years slipping away from me as I just got bigger. When I became a father, not being around was not an option – I had to give everything for my wife and son.”
Tony’s addiction to fast food caused him to gain weight over the years, with the dad often binging on greasy takeaways and sugary treats.
On his binge days, Tony started the day with four McGriddles, four hash browns and a large coke from McDonalds, followed by a large pizza for lunch and a burger meal on the way home – while he snacked on chocolate, cookies, donuts, chips and ice cream throughout the day.
The dad said he tried to keep his out of control binging habits a secret from his wife Meredith as he wanted her to think he was trying to lose weight.
After believing he had been eating healthy all day, Meredith would often make him a nutritious and low-calorie dinner such as fish and salad – but had no idea of her husband’s bad eating habits.
Tony said: “Food was an addiction to me, and it was all I could think about. I’d always eat to the point of feeling sick – it was like I was never satisfied.
“Meredith has always been healthy, and she cared about me and tried to help me lose weight.
“I always told her I’d been eating well all day and would have a healthy dinner at home with her, but she had no idea of my binges. It was a very shameful secret for me.”
After Tony and Meredith’s son Ryder was born, the dad became more dedicated than ever to his weight loss journey so that he could always be around for his son.
The dad stopped all ‘fad diets’ and simply began tracking his calories and macros – while he has also ditched his fast food addiction for a ‘clean, lean and green’ approach to eating.
At his heaviest, Tony suffered from sleep apnoea due to his weight and required a machine to pump air into his lungs while he slept or else he could stop breathing.
And with a family history of heart disease, the dad said he lived in constant fear of having a heart attack.
But now after losing weight, Tony’s health is better than ever, and he no longer suffers from sleep apnoea.
While Tony said he still feels like he has a ‘long way to go’ on his weight loss journey, the dad can now run around after his son and knows he will be around for a long time to watch him grow up.
Tony has been documenting his incredible weight loss journey on his Instagram page, @focusfightfinish – which he says helps keep him motivated.
He said: “I read a book called ‘Can’t Hurt Me’ by David Goggins, and it changed my life. I’d been trying to lose weight for so long, but I did nothing to change my mindset.
I decided to stop doing silly fad diets and began tracking everything I ate.
“I started going to the gym and now enjoy doing regular weight training and cardio. Like everything, it’s hard at first but you get better each day.
“I still have a long way to go but I feel healthier than I ever have before. I have so much energy and can play with my son.
“I did all of this for my wife and son, without them I would be nothing.
“I knew I had to live as long as I could to be there for my family. I love them more than anything.
“I feel unstoppable and can’t wait to see what the future holds.”
Breakfast: Four McGriddles (1,792 calories), four hash browns (600 calories) and a large coke (290 calories) from McDonald’s
Mid-morning Snack: Donuts, chips and cookies provided at work (900 calories)
Lunch: Large pizza or super-sized burger meal (1200 calories)
Afternoon snack: Loads of M&Ms from the office kitchen at work (600 calories)
Way home from work: Large meal from the drive through of a fast food place (1000 calories)
Dinner: Healthy meal prepared by his wife, such as fish and salad (600 calories)
Dessert: Ice cream and chocolate chip cookies late at night (800 calories)
Breakfast: Oatmeal with chia seeds and honey (350 calories) with a protein smoothie with strawberries, blueberries, banana, kale and spinach (250 calories)
Mid-morning Snack: Protein bar or yoghurt with granola (250 calories)
Lunch: Chicken, quinoa and greens (500 calories)
Afternoon snack: Unsalted nuts, hard boiled egg or fruit (80 calories)
Dinner: Chicken, quinoa and greens (500 calories)
Dessert: On occasion, a protein bar (200 calories)
TOTAL: 2,130 calories