A CHOCOHOLIC who was terrified to leave his home as his weight ballooned to 26 stone has told how music saved his life.
Rick Snowdon battled with his addiction for years and ate £25 worth of sweets and pastries every day.
At one stage, he forced his older brother to trawl the streets at 4am to find him something to satisfy his cravings.
He was afraid to look in the mirror, and rarely showered, but when he did he closed his eyes so he didn’t look at himself.
But a rigorous regime of exercise and diet helped Rick lose more than half of his body weight and crash down from his 56-inch waist.
And the 29-year-old, from Hartlepool, says learning to play the guitar while he locked himself away for four solitary years saved his life.
Without music, I’d have eaten myself to deathRick Snowdon
Now a trim 14 stone, the handsome singer-songwriter is releasing his first single inspired by his weight battle called Bring You Home and has been invited to audition for BBC’s The Voice.
“Without music, I’d have eaten myself to death,” said Rick. “I just surrounded myself with it, and it has saved me.
“It is something I do completely, with all I have, and it is the only thing that has ever compared to chocolate.”
Rick was bullied throughout school – branded Fat Snowy by cruel children – and would rarely turn up for classes.
He weighed 19 stone at the age of 15, was very shy.
“I was telling myself that I wasn’t worth anything, and I was a waste of time,” said Rick.
“Then I got involved in music, picked up a guitar, started playing, and decided I wanted to be in a band and be a rock star.
Rick spent his childhood listening to his dad’s records of Led Zeppelin, Queen and David Bowie, and loved the sound.
“I didn’t know what it was at that time, but I was entertained,” he said. “It was loud and raw and exciting. That’s what I aspire to. That’s what I want to be now. I want people to take notice.”
Now, he has 16 guitars, along with a drum kit, keyboard, violin, bongos, harmonica and countless amplifiers.
It was after an uncomfortable night out with brother William, Rick vowed to stay indoors for four months to lose weight.
It turned into four and a half years but the less contact Rick had with people the more depressed he became and the more he would eat.
But it reached a turning point after he forced William to go out at 4am in the rain to buy him chocolate which William begged him not to eat.
“Since then, I’ve started doing weights and do it three times a week now,” said Rick.
“I have just surrounded myself with music. It was a solution, a way to save myself, and something to aspire to.”
n Rick’s single, Bring You Home, was written as a reminder of the challenge he went through and hopes it will help others in the same situation.
Bring You Home is available on itunes
Top ten choc tunes...
1: Careless Whispa
2: Life on Mars Bar
3: Coward of the Bounty
4: Cool for Kit-Kats
5: The Lion Bar Sleeps Tonight
6: In Da Club biscuit
7: Hit Me Baby One More Time Out
8: Rolo-over Beethoven
9: Sweet Like Chocolate
10: In The Aero Tonight