Long-term weight loss is a snip for hairdresser Katie
Katie Clark, 46, a hairdresser from Suffolk, has maintained her 5st 2lb* weight loss for almost seven years, and has been named as our Diamond Member of the Year 2018.
‘I’ve struggled with my weight since childhood, and first joined Slimming World 20 years ago. At that time I was fed up of being the “big one” in my group of friends. I felt really uncomfortable on a girly holiday and I knew it was my weight that was making me miserable. I decided the next time we all went on holiday I’d be feeling happy and confident. I lost 4st 11lbs at group and felt amazing – I was even the first-ever member to appear on the front cover of Slimming World Magazine in 1998!
‘After a while, though, I started to think I could go it alone. Soon after, I met my partner, Lee, and we got comfortable with lots of meals out and cosy nights in. A few years later I had my daughter, Beau, and my weight just went up and up. Before I knew it, I was heavier than I’d ever been.
‘The turning point came on a trip to the park when Beau was about 18 months old. I climbed up the slide with her and sat her on my knee, but when I went to push myself off, I realised we weren’t moving. I was wedged so tightly in the slide that I had to push us down to the bottom with my spare arm. I knew then that something had to change.
‘Around that time, Lee’s cousin announced that she was getting married in Cyprus and we were all invited. Instead of being excited, I was filled with dread about going away at the size I was. I worried it would be like that first holiday all over again. It was the motivation I needed to get myself back to Slimming World. I’d done it before, so I knew I could do it again.
‘I wasn’t worried about rejoining Slimming World because I knew everyone would be warm and friendly, just like they were before. I knew, too, that the plan and the group support works wonders. Even so, I was surprised all over again at how much amazing food I could eat! Curries, pasta, chips and burgers were all still on the menu, I just had to prepare them in a different way – like swapping white bread for wholemeal and using low-calorie cooking spray instead of oil.
A year later I reached my target weight of 10st 4½lbs – and this time I knew that the secret to maintaining my weight loss was staying to my group!
'The support and inspiration I get from them each week really keeps me on track, and I like to think I help out a few of the newer members with my own advice too.
‘By the time the wedding in Cyprus came around, I was feeling fantastic and enjoyed the day without worrying about my weight. Best of all, I knew that my size would never stop me having fun with my little girl again. We had a great time playing in the pool and making the most of our holiday, rather than hiding away.
‘Another amazing change that happened after losing weight the second time around was a love of fitness! Although I did exercise when I was heavier, being slimmer gave me a whole new zest for activity. These days I have so much energy that I need a way to burn it off! A few years ago I started running my own Hour of Power exercise classes, which I love. I often spot familiar faces from my Slimming World group while I’m teaching, including Donna, my lovely Consultant! Slimming World has helped me to change my lifestyle for the better – and because of that I’m so much happier, healthier and more confident.’
Breakfast: Big bowl of Crunchy Nut cornflakes and milk.
Lunch: Large sandwich with crisps and a chocolate bar.
Dinner: Steak pie, buttery mash, vegetables and gravy.
Snacks: Crisps, biscuits and chocolate.
Breakfast: 2 Weetabix Additions Coconut & Raisin with milk and blueberries.
Lunch: Large chicken salad with lettuce, cucumber and tomatoes.
Dinner: Nacho-style feast, made with lean beef mince, potato wedges, peppers and spices, and served with a large salad.
Snacks: Apples, pears, bananas or strawberries, and a Slimming World Hi-Fi bar.
*Weight loss will vary due to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose
You'll find more delicious recipe and menu ideas at your local group, along with all the help you need to get started and reach your target weight.