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Inspirational Formby woman loses 9 stone with the help of a Formby Slimming World class

Claudia Whittam tipped the scales at 22 stone after gorging on countless packets of crisps, cake, chocolate and takeaways. However after ballooning to a 22/24 dress size Claudia was given a rude awakening by doctors.

Health professionals warned her if she continued her unhealthy ways not only could she need knee replacements in later life, but could also be left infertile.

It was at that point that Claudia vowed to change her lifestyle and shed the pounds and to date has lost a whopping NINE STONE 3lbs.

Claudia from Formby said: "I had always struggled with my weight ever since I was in primary school. My Mum was the same and was keen for me not to go through the same problems. She would tell the dinner ladies not to give me second and third helpings at lunch time and tried to make me eat healthily but, I think having watched her with her weight it was inevitable that I would also struggle.”

Throughout her teenage years and in to her twenties Claudia continued to pile on the pounds and said she would pretty much eat everything she shouldn’t.

Claudia said: “I wouldn’t eat breakfast, I would just snack on chocolates and cakes and lunch was like cheese paninis or cheesy pasta’s- I don’t think I had anything without cheese on. I was Domino’s most loyal customer and would order every Tuesday because it was buy one get one free. So I would order two large pizzas, either pepperoni and ham and pineapple or margarita and tuna and sweetcorn. I would tell my mum that I would keep one for tomorrow, but would then end up eating both in one night.”

"Every night I would call in at Tesco and stock up on crisps, sweets and chocolate and then go home, put my pjs on and eat them all."

But her bad habits soon began to take their toll on Claudia who, aged 19, dropped out of university and became almost a recluse. She said: “I was so unhappy in myself. I wasn’t wanting to go out anywhere because I hated having to get dressed up as I knew nothing was going to fit me. I basically became a recluse. I was suffering with really low moods and was just in a really bad place. I just couldn’t do anything I wanted to do, even going up stairs was a struggle and I wouldn’t be able to walk for long periods of time because my legs would hurt from carrying around my weight.”

But it was when she went to the doctors that she was given the shock she needed to make a change.

She said: “I was at my heaviest of 22 stone and I went to the doctors and they basically said I was at risk of all these health problems. I was at risk of diabetes and they told me my weight could stop me having kids. They even said I could need knee replacements in the future because my knees wouldn’t be able to hold my body weight. It scared me."

“Because I wanted to be able to go out with my friends and one day have kids and a family and I wasn’t going to be able to do any of these things if I didn’t lose weight.”

Claudia Whittam has now lost an incredible nine stone in weight!

Claudia, said she had previously tried “quick fix diets” and had also joined Slimming World once before with her mum in 2016. However she said this time she was determined and re-joined her local group at the Dove Centre in Formby which is run by consultant Carol Wylie. She was amazed when the weight began to drop off her.

Claudia said: “It was hard to begin with because I was used to being able to eat whatever I wanted but I soon realised I could still have things I liked, just in moderation. I lost weight quite quickly and was losing half a stone in two weeks and within a year I had lost the majority of my weight.”

Claudia has so far dropped an incredible 9st 3lb, and now weighs 12st 2lb - with her obese frame a distant memory. Even more amazingly she has managed to drop a staggering seven dress sizes and is now a size 10/12.

The biggest change Claudia has noticed in herself is her confidence and her weight loss has allowed her to do something she has always dreamed of. Claudia is now doing a performing arts degree - something she could only dream of before.

She said: “I have always been interested in performing arts and have sang since I was a young girl. So when I started to lose the weight I decided to join a dance class and was shocked when I could actually keep up with the others. I had always wanted to go to university and I know now that it was my weight that jeopardised my course and made me to drop out the first time. So I applied for a performing arts degree and had to audition and I got offered a place.”

Claudia, who is now studying at Edge Hill University, dances twice a week, is part of a cheerleading team and a strength class - and said she is even nearly able to do the splits.

She added: “I just love being active now. My mum used to be the one telling me to get up and do things and now she is telling me to slow down."

“But it’s like I can finally do everything I have wanted to do now. I am trying to make up for lost time and I just want to give everything a go. I love going out with my friends, whereas before I would make up excuses and shy away from photos but it’s not a problem now. Claudia Whittam obese days are now a thing of the past.

“I think my mum is the most proud of me though as she has always wanted me to do it.”

And Claudia has some advice for others trying to lose weight. She said: “Join Slimming World, but do it for yourself. Quick fixes don’t work."

“Slimming World makes you change the way you look and feel about food. The changes I’ve made were so simple – little things like switching white bread for wholemeal and using low-calorie cooking spray instead of lots of oil. And now I can live my life to my full potential.

If Claudia has inspired you to lose weight you can join her Slimming World group at The Dove Centre by calling Carol Wylie on tel: 07794 957524.

Well done Claudia!! You are an inspiration to us all. Good Luck in your future, you deserve everything you wish for.

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