Pawel is a doctor working for the NHS in Manchester, and despite working in the healthcare sector and having a professional understanding of the impact of being overweight, his previous lifestyle choices had a significant effect on his health.

But, thanks to The Fast 800 Programme, Pawel was able to turn his lifestyle around and is seeing the benefits of living healthier.

Pavel explained: “Years ago, before working in the NHS, I had worked away from home for around seven nights every other week for a few years and got used to ordering from the hotel menu, grabbing a quick sandwich during a busy shift, or even grabbing something from a fast food chain. 

“Even after I had changed my job, I not only stuck to bad habits, but overeating became my way of dealing with stresses in both my private and professional life.”

Pawel’s poor diet left him feeling not only overweight, but incredibly tired and with little motivation to do anything about it.

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In January 2021 Pawel weighed 24st 3lbs, and felt depressed alongside suffering post-Covid fatigue. Pawel sought the help of a clinical psychologist who offered him therapy. Something which Pawel described as “a big turning point”.

Therapy enabled Pawel to feel ready to tackle his weight, and he used his medical expertise and research to discover a weight-loss drug named Saxenda. However, Pawel soon learned that in addition to the weight loss medication, it was absolutely imperative that he improved his lifestyle simultaneously.

During his research, Pawel watched a TV interview with Dr Michael Mosley in which he mentioned a weight loss programme called The Fast 800. “I was impressed by the scientific approach and the meals sounded tasty as well as healthy,” Pawel explained, as he recounted starting the programme in February 2021.

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Pawel consulted his GP, who approved of his two-pronged approach of using Saxenda alongside partaking in The Very Fast 800 programme for the first few months, then gradually weaning himself off of Saxenda – which Pawel managed after less than five months of using it.

The Very Fast 800 is a rapid weight loss approach where participants commit to eating 800 calories a day. “I was previously consuming around 3,500 calories a day at that point, so the thought of reducing that down to 800 calories a day was terrifying!” Pawel confessed, but after two successful weeks, he weighed himself and had lost 1.7 stone already.

“I could see that I had shrunk in size and I was thrilled with the rapid results!  So, I decided to stick it out for 12 weeks to see what I could achieve.”

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Pawel admitted he was previously terrified of the gym, as he always thought people were looking at him, so he was surprised to see how easily he took to the basic exercise programme too. Doing the exercises in the privacy of his own bedroom, with very detailed advice on how to carry out the exercises worked for him very well.

“I was seeing the positive effects of the cleaner lifestyle in lots of different ways,” explained Pawel. In the first seven months of the programme, Pawel: Lost about nine stone and 6lbs), lost 17.5 inches on his waist, reversed his prediabetes (HbA1c down to 30 from 42 mmol/mol), improved his blood pressure control, completely stopped snoring, and achieved fitness for the first time in 20 years.

“Whilst I will say that the weight loss medication (Saxenda) definitely helped me lose weight, I honestly don’t think it would have worked as well without the programme. I certainly wouldn’t have managed to maintain the weight loss long-term. I can’t stress enough how important it is that if you’re considering a weight loss medication, that you combine it with some sort of support programme. There is no magic pill or quick fix that will achieve and maintain weight loss long-term. You do need to apply some hard work yourself as well.”

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