THREE stones lighter, two half marathons completed and a full marathon dream in the pipeline.

Chris Bunce, 26, from West Swindon used to believe that running a half marathon would be an impossible task, but thanks to Slimming World and a lot of hard work, it is now an accomplished fact.

It all began when Chris decided to walk into his local Slimming World group last March and begin his weight loss journey.

Nine months on, and he is relaunching the Purton Slimming World group as a consultant.

“I had never really seen myself as an overweight person, but after seeing photos of myself taken on recent holidays combined with the frustration of never being able to find nice clothes in my size, I finally realised something had to be done.

“So in order to help me lose weight, I decided to take up running. I set myself the goal of completing the Cardiff Half Marathon in October.

“I also understood that I could not lose weight by running alone. I needed to change my diet, and this is where Slimming World came in.”

Chris realised his running goal. He ran the Cardiff Half Marathon on October 6 in less than one hour and 45 minutes, having not been able to run at all at the beginning of the year.

“Having heard of Slimming World and all the wonderful food you can enjoy while on plan, it seemed to be the most logical step.

“I have always been someone who has enjoyed food. Depriving myself of the foods I love and cutting down my portions was simply not an option.”

After making such monumental changes to his life, Chris has decided to help his fellow slimmers by becoming a Slimming World Consultant.

He relaunched the Purton local group yesterday.

“A year ago I would be at home doing nothing on a Thursday evening, now I am about to help other people change their lives,” he said.

“My group has been instrumental in who I have become, and it’s going to be a fantastic opportunity to be able to give something back.

“Their constant support has motivated me during the weeks when I have been finding it tough.

“2013 was an incredible journey. It started with a shirt not fitting on New Year’s Eve, and it ended being at my Target Weight, with a full marathon in the pipeline.

“I am sure that my 2013 started in the same way that some people will feel going into 2014.

“I hope they can draw inspiration from me. Look what you can achieve in a year with Slimming World.”

n The Purton group meets at 7.30pm on Thursdays at the Purton Club, Station Road, previously the Purton Working Men’s Club. Contact Chris for more details on 07803 807855.