James Tilley weight loss
Health and Fitness

How A Teenager Lost Over 6 Stone In 3 Months To Join The Marines

A former Royal Marine has told how he lost 6 ½ stone in three months to join the elite British fighting force...

James Tilley weight loss

A former Royal Marine has revealed how he lost 6 ½ stone in three months to join the elite British fighting force.

James Tilley weighed 17st when he was 16 and would regularly eat up to 5,000 calories a day, including takeaway pizzas for his school dinners.

But he dropped 10 inches off his waist in just three months to achieve his dream and is now helping others to get into shape after opening his own gym. 

The transformation began when James, from Wiltshire, finished school and his stepfather suggested joining the Marines as a way to turn around his unhealthy lifestyle and get fit.

James Tilley Royal Marines

Inspired by this and realising he had to quickly shed his excess weight to pass the strenuous fitness tests required, he overhauled his eating habits and began exercising every day.

After going from 17st to just 10.5st, and from a 40 inch waist to a slender 30, he passed the Royal Marines' gruelling selection tests and spent four years in service, from 2011 to 2015.

James Tilley Royal Marines

The 24-year-old says he now sticks to a strict meal plan and exercise regime, buying his food at an online retailer.

His high protein diet includes a bowl of oats at the start and end of every day, three servings of chicken & rice and a portion of eggs - as well as the occasional protein pizza or stir fry meal bag.

James Tilley

The fitness enthusiast is also planning to marry his perfect woman after impressing her on social media with photos of his physique.

He got together with fiancé Emma Taylor in 2015 after they got chatting on Instagram and the savvy businesswoman helped him realise his next career goal after leaving the Marines - opening his own gym, Sui Generis, in Pewsey, Wiltshire.

With Emma running her own successful hair and beauty salon the pair both have their own businesses and are planning to marry.

Fomer Royal Marine James Tilley & fiancee Emma

James says as a teenager he would constantly eat past the point of feeling full, which left him unmotivated and unhappy:

"I was always the funny fat kid in the class, but in reality, I was miserable. I never wanted to leave the house, and wouldn't go swimming with my friends because I felt too embarrassed.

"My step-dad suggested that I join the marines and it was as if someone had flicked a switch in my head because from that moment I knew this was my motivation to get fit."

"Once I'd made the decision to train every day I soon started to see results and was amazed to lose so much weight in such a short time.

"It all fell into place and I enjoyed a very rewarding four years in the marines."

"While I was serving I began to focus on my next goal of opening my own gym but I couldn't have done it without Emma.

"I didn't have any girlfriends through school, and the thought of ever asking a girl out sent shivers down my spine.

"But I got chatting to Emma on social media and there was a real spark between us. I don't care what people say, attraction matters at the start of a relationship. I know that without my physique we wouldn't have got together.

James Tilley gym

"She helped me to get the gym off the ground and showed me how to handle everything behind-the-scenes.

"It feels great to share in other people's weight loss transformations, and [having] been through my own makes it easier to relate to what people are going through. I couldn't be happier."

If you'd like to see James' fitness advice in action, you can visit his YouTube channel here for instructional videos and more information.

More: Prince Harry Wants To Put 'Mental Fitness' At Heart Of Forces' Training