I love food. A bit too much and the day job doesn’t help as I’m always out and about trying the latest eatery. Like most girls I want to be slimmer so have tried faddy diet under the sun from the juicing diet, to the caveman diet and everything in between. There’s even a Slimming World club at the bottom of my street and when I went earlier in the year I did loose weight, but it was tough. So when I heard about a 27 year old mum from Ballymena who has lost 7 stones, I knew I had to find out how.
Charlene McCrory always thought that she was “just a big girl” and was destined to be overweight, but with the birth of her second child she felt so out of breath and had no energy she knew she had to change her lifestyle. Her asthma symptoms were worse than ever and she struggled running around after two children.
Fast forward two years and Charlene is now a massive seven stone lighter, something she credits well-known slimming club, Slimming World with helping her achieve it. “I’d heard of Slimming World but really didn’t think a diet would work for me. My mum and her friend were going to a meeting and persuaded me to go along. I was reluctant and probably a bit skeptical but then in the first week I lost six pounds and that really spurred me on.”
At her heaviest Charlene weighed just over 17 and a half stone but thanks to lifestyle changes and regular exercise sessions she is now in the best shape of her life; her asthma has all but disappeared and despite juggling motherhood, work and personal training sessions she’s amazed by her energy levels.
Like many of us, eating unhealthy food is just a habit and breaking the habit is the first step on the way to a healthier lifestyle. Charlene set weekly goals and had a determined mindset. “You can adapt it to suit your life and while you have to be a little bit more prepared you’re never hungry.’ she says.
Charlene’s weight loss journey has prompted her to help inspire others with their own fitness battles. You can get healthy eating ideas and inspiration on her Instagram page – she has over 27,000 followers wanting to get her tips. Also from April 6 she will be taking her own Slimming World classes in Ballymena’s Adair Arms Hotel. “I feel like I have all the tools now,” said Charlene. “If I can do it anyone can and that’s what made me want to train as consultant as I know how challenging it can be. I’m passionate about it because I know it works – I’m proof of that.”
One of the challenges to losing the weight, meant Charlene struggled with finding clothes to suit her new shape. “I always felt downbeat when shopping but I’m not embarrassed anymore. Now summer is on the way, it is great being able to wear what I want, but now i am trying to find out what my new style.”
With this in mind the team at New Look in Fairhill Shopping Centre, Ballymena helped Charlene find the perfect pair of jeans to suit her new slim frame “If someone had told me two years ago I’d be wearing skinny jeans and dresses I’d have laughed at them. Now I feel like there’s nothing holding me back!”
Well thanks for the inspiration Charlene, I’ve managed to step away from the mini creme eggs – moment on the lips, lifetime on the hips!
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