I’m still shocked I’ve got a waist!
Super slimmer Audrey Gordon from Dundee is still in shock – after losing a staggering 11 stone.
‘I feel so much different and still get a shock at myself when I’m trying on a new outfit and I look in the mirror. My husband Bill laughed at me the other day when I cried out ‘oh I’ve got a waist now!’
Fifty-one-year old Audrey has had a weight problem since primary school.
‘I was big girl, well that was what I called myself, but in all honesty I was fat. Even when I got married in June 2004 I was 19-1/2 stone and a size 24,’ says Audrey.
However her weight became the least of her problems as not long after she got married she picked up a horrendous viral infection in the hotel her and Bill were staying in – and that has impacted on Audrey’s health ever since.
‘I ended up with an illness called Menieres Disease which is very debilitating and there is no cure,’ continues Audrey who was pensioned off from her career due to ill health in 2006 at the age of 41.
‘I would sit in the house each day looking out the window and just watch the world go by. Inevitably depression kicked in and all I did was eat, eat, and eat. I didn’t care about my appearance and didn’t really consider what effect the comfort eating was having on my body and health.’
Despite trying on and off over the years Audrey struggled with her weight – and the various health issues she developed. And to make matters worse her chronic fatigue was eventually diagnosed as M.E (chronic fatigue syndrome)
‘It was horrendous. I was in bed for days, weeks at a time. M.E isn’t just being tired, it is utter exhaustion constantly and it never lets up.’
Not surprisingly Audrey started piling on the weight again however when a friend said she was attending a local Scottish Slimmers class Audrey decided to give her weight loss regime another go.
‘I got it into my head that there wasn’t much I could do about the many illnesses I have, I wasn’t in control of them, but my weight was one thing I could control and that’s what I did,’ explains Audrey. ‘Unless I was in hospital I never missed a class. Karen Millar, my class manager, was a great support to me as well as all the other class members. They kept me going and despite the constant pain and exhaustion I realised I was actually having fun.’
Three years after joining her local Scottish Slimmers class Audrey has lost a whole person!
‘When I got to target, having lost 11 stone, in October 2016 I was in shock. It may have taken me 51 years to hear that bell but it’s the best sound I have ever heard in my life!
‘It’s taken me longer than most people to lose weight due to all my operations, health problems and with my M.E I can’t exercise but I was absolutely determined this time that I was going the full way. I realise with all the health issues that I have had to face over the last 12 years that you never know what lies ahead of you.
‘So I plugged away slowly but surely and I have actually loved every minute of it. Making meals from scratch every night, being in control of what I was eating, having such a laugh and the banter in the class every week, meeting new people and making new friends.
‘My doctor can hardly believe what I have achieved either. Every time I see her she just stands looking at me in amazement. In fact she says she wishes she had a cardboard cut-out of the old and new me and when patients come in and say ‘oh I have this and that wrong with me and I can’t exercise but I want to lose weight, can I have a gastric band?’ – she would point to me and say ‘see what Audrey has done without a gastric band!’
‘I now look back on my weight loss journey, knowing all the obstacles and hurdles I have had to go through during the last few years and I know it’s a total cliché but I would say to anyone who thinks they can’t lose weight – ‘if I can do it then anyone can!’