By Declan Taylor, courtesy of The Daily Star
TYSON FURY says being the heavyweight champion of the world felt like it was Christmas every day.
But there was only so much turkey and tinsel the undefeated Fury could take before he hit rock bottom.
Fury has not boxed since he dethroned Wladimir Klitschko back in November 2015 to claim the IBF, WBA, IBO and WBO titles on an unforgettable night in Germany.
It was one of the best overseas performances by a British boxer of his generation - but victory sent him on a downward spiral of drink and drugs.
Fury, 29, was stripped of the IBF and then vacated the WBO, IBO and WBA belts shortly afterwards and has not been seen in a ring ever since.
But after announcing his return to the ring, Fury has revealed why it was only trading punches again that could really save him.
He said: “I feel comfortable boxing, I feel comfortable with a structured routine.
“If you are in a routine then it runs smoothly, but if it’s Christmas day every day of the year, 365 days in a row, it gets a bit boring.
“When you can go out and do what you want, when you want, eat what you want, drink what you want, nothing is a treat anymore. That’s how it was really.
“When you dream a dream and the dream becomes reality then it’s like ‘Ok, what’s next?’ When you’re living the dream every day, what do you do? It’s not a dream anymore so you have to figure out a new dream.
“You have to go back to the drawing board, chop everything down and live the dream again – that’s what I’m doing now.”
Fury ballooned up to an estimated 27st [378-pounds] as a rock-and-roll lifestyle took its toll on his waistline.
Tyson Fury says that he loved being overweight
He has now shed a lot of weight ahead of his ring return, but admits he actually enjoyed being overweight.
He added: “I’ve got this big chain, a big diamond cross, which I used to put round my neck and think ‘Yeah, I’m the real Big Papa now’.
“I used to go out in this big Jeep with a big chain on and no shirt, fat as anything. Did it affect my confidence? No. Did it heck.
“I enjoyed being fat, it was great, it was a great part of my life and hopefully I go fat again one day.
“But for now I’ve got work to do.”