My 12st Weight Loss Se­cret

I was in ur­gent need of some body­work!

Pick Me Up! Special - - News -

Pass­ing my driv­ing test was my down­fall

Pulling into the driv­ing test cen­tre, my stom­ach was flip­ping ner­vously.

Then. . . ‘Con­grat­u­la­tions, you passed,’ the ex­am­iner beamed. ‘Yes!’ I cheered. It was the mo­ment every teenager dreams of – pass­ing their driv­ing test. Free­dom! I was 18, and im­me­di­ately treated my­self to a pink Corsa. I loved that lit­tle car and drove it ev­ery­where – even two min­utes to the lo­cal shop.

Trou­ble was, I was al­ready a size16. My curves had never both­ered me, but now I didn’t have to walk any­where, I be­came lazy. Size16 soon be­came 18, and then size 20.

I didn’t eat well, ei­ther. I skipped brekkie, had crisps and bic­cies for lunch, and junk food for tea.

In my early 20s, I had Lewis, seven, quickly fol­lowed by twins Lexi-jo and Lian, five.

I put on weight with each preg­nancy.

By the time I got to­gether with fam­ily friend Dave Swinge­wood, in May 2012, I’d no idea how much I weighed. Luck­ily, Dave, now 34, loved my curves, but we got com­fort­able, liv­ing on take­aways.

My waist­line started to creep up, and so did Dave’s.

In Septem­ber 2014, we had a lit­tle boy, Zac. But I was so un­fit, hiding rolls of flab un­der my size 24 clothes.

‘I’ve got to do some­thing,’ I told Dave one day.

In Oc­to­ber 2014, I joined my lo­cal Slim­ming World group and drove — ob­vi­ously! — to my first weigh-in. The scales showed 20st 11. ‘No,’ I gasped. Ashamed, I ditched the junk food and cooked from scratch. I also

be­gan walk­ing — and in the first month, I lost a stone.

‘I’ve hardly touched my car,’ I told Dave. Then, an idea struck me. ‘Let’s sell it!’ I said. With­out the temp­ta­tion parked in the drive­way, I would have no choice but to walk ev­ery­where. Af­ter­wards, I felt free! I used an app to count my steps, and most days notched up 12,000.

Dave would join me and with my healthy, home-cooked meals fill­ing him up, he lost weight too.

‘This diet’s not half bad,’ he laughed.

Over the next 18 months, I shed al­most half my weight in to­tal.

Sud­denly, I was 9st 131b and a slim size 12 — the skin­ni­est I had ever been.

I could fit my whole body into one leg of my size 24 trousers!

And Dave dropped from a wob­bly 14st 11lb to 10st 4lb. We’ve lost nearly 15st be­tween us, and even fam­ily have trou­ble recog­nis­ing us.

What’s more, the kids don’t recog­nise us in our ‘fat’ pho­tos, which we store in a drawer to keep us on track. Just like I sold my car, I feel like I’ve traded my chunky, clapped out bod in, too, and bought a swanky, speedy su­per­car in ex­change!

One thing’s for sure — I’d def­i­nitely pass my MOT!

It was ex­treme but it to­tally worked I’M LIT­ER­ALLY HALF THE WOMAN I USED TO BE

Jo Hughes, 30,

I never walked any­where Dave de­cided to join me We’re so much hap­pier now

The kids don’t recog­nise my “fat” pho­tos

Sim­ple so­lu­tion

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