A STAFFORD slimmer who became unhappy after piling weight on as a teenager has shed an impressive six stones – and won an award.
Mum-of-two Lucy Grace, 22, has dropped from 17st 8lbs to 11st 8lbs in 10 months.
She decided to lose weight after steadily gaining during her teenage years and was a size 16 to 18 by the time she was 18. When she became pregnant a year later the weight continued to go on and she was soon wearing size 22.
“I was so upset about my weight but tried to pretend it was not a problem,” she said.
“Inwardly I did not know how to deal with it. I became pregnant again and promised myself I would lose my weight after the birth of my son. When he was just eight weeks old and I had had the final check up with the midwife I walked into John Wheeldon Slimming World group.”
She followed the food optimising eating plan, which involves eating plenty of fruit and veg, lean meat and fish, pasta, potatoes, rice and pulses. She has cut out many of the convenience foods and sugary snacks she used to rely on.
She says: “I never dreamt I could achieve so much. I’ve gone from a size 22 to a 10 and it’s made such a huge difference – it’s changed my life. I’ve got so much more energy and I can do things now that I couldn’t before. My fitness has improved – I enjoy being active now rather than thinking of it as a chore.
“My family and friends are all amazed how much I can eat and still lose weight. I cook for them now and they can’t believe it’s all healthy food because it tastes so good.
“I still eat all the same meals that I did before but now I cook and prepare them differently. I cook from scratch instead of relying on ready meals and convenience foods like jars of sauce. I also cook with less oil and fat and choose lean meat.”
Lucy has just been named the John Wheeldon group’s Woman of the Year 2013. The competition recognises the achievements of women in making long-term healthy lifestyle changes.
She added: “At first I was extremely nervous, especially about stepping on the scales, but straightaway I was made to feel welcome and now it’s like a night out with friends. I couldn’t have done it without them. It’s like having 54 cheerleaders on your side, when you’re doing well they spur you on further and when you’re struggling they motivate you to keep going.
“My top tip is to plan a week of meals and always go to the group as you learn so much from your fellow members. I’m the happiest I’ve been in years.”