Emma: How I ran off over 7st

Meet one woman who proves you can build up your fitness from nothing – if you take it step by step
Published 29 February, 2016

Emma's story 

Name: Emma
Weight loss: 7st 3lb
Was: 17st 
Now: 9st 11lb
Age: 41
Height: 5'1"
How long it took: 1 years 2 months
How she did it: WW Workshop with her WW Coach, Berit

"I was so proud of not only of finishing the London Marathon, but of how far I’d come."

Lack of fitness As a kid, I hated sport and was always picked last for teams. Being overweight didn’t help, and my lack of fitness carried on as I grew up. Combined with huge portion sizes and a taste for pastries and crisps, my weight ballooned and I became a size 22-24.

This is my moment When my sister said she was going to join WW, I thought, ‘This is my moment.’ The very next day, I went along. I also bought a pair of trainers and started going for walks. At first, I went every other evening for an hour. It was a struggle, and I’d get breathless when I walked fast, but it soon became easier. When I was going so fast that I was tripping over my own feet, it made sense to give running a go. It had never been a goal, but it just came naturally. Soon, I was running without realising. By Christmas, I was running 5k a few times a week, and I was down to 13st.

Running the London Marathon! I started entering 5k and 10k competitions, then worked my way up to a half marathon. In August 2013, I finally reached my goal weight – and when the opportunity to run the London Marathon came round, I knew I had to do it. After 4 hours, 7 minutes and 42 seconds, I crossed the finish line. I was so proud – not only of finishing, but of how far I’d come.

3 tips that helped me on my journey

1. Have a tub of cherry tomatoes by the cooker When I got home from work ravenous, I’d pop them in my mouth as I cooked dinner to stop me snacking on cheese or ham before mealtime.

2. Remember to focus on losing pounds each week It sounds obvious, but I kept my goals in mind because I knew that if I gained, I’d find it demoralising. I didn’t want to cover old ground, losing pounds I’d already lost.

3. Have a treat once a week But be sensible, too – I had a Chinese every Saturday night, but I chose healthier options such as chicken, ginger and spring onion with boiled rice, instead of egg-fried rice with prawn crackers, like I used to.