How a cancer diagnosis gave Sheffield man John O'Malley a second chance at life

A Sheffield man has turned a cancer diagnosis into a second chance at life, losing an incredible nine stone in three years.

Thursday, 4th July 2019, 11:22 am
Updated Thursday, 4th July 2019, 14:36 pm
Cancer diagnosis leads to life changing weight loss journey for John O’Malley

John O’Malley’s world was turned upside down when, at 58, he was diagnosed with kidney cancer. He was told by a consultant that it was highly likely he would be on kidney dialysis for the rest of this life.

“I was shocked,” said John.

“On top of what was already awful, the upset and the surgery, how could I put my family, my four children and four grandchildren through the stress of long-term care?”

John, a liquor licensing manager with South Yorkshire Police, sought advice from another surgeon who said if he seriously looked at changing his lifestyle, he might be able to live a normal life. At 25 stone, John admits he had a lot to change.

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“As supervisor I spent most of my time in the office and my fitness was shocking,” he said.

“I would leave Snig Hill and not be able to reach the Castle Square tram-stop without several breaks to catch my breath.”

John bought a bike on impulse, and began building up his weekly rides, losing four stone through exercise alone. After hitting a hurdle, he decided to join Slimming World, and – after learning about diet and what he should be eating – more weight dropped off. He picked up Slimming World's Mr Sleek, and Man of the Year titles.

John has now lost nine stone and is cycling between 20-35 miles every weekend.

“I truly feel better than I have for many years. When I bump into people who haven’t seen me for a while they are shocked. My life is so much better now; I can kick a ball around with my 13 year old son, and I feel like a new man.”