Shirley Paton was so shocked by holiday snaps of her in a bikini that she vowed to slim down.
‘I had a fantastic time in Turkey with my husband and two children – but when I saw the pictures of me on the beach I thought: “Enough is enough!”’ says Shirley.
When she got home she joined Scottish Slimmers and the weight began to fall off at around two or three pounds a week.
She began her weight loss last February and only eight months later she reached her target weight and dropped more than two stone.
‘I was so delighted – it was a really emotional moment when the target bell rang,’ says Shirley.
She’d begun to put on weight after her daughter Claire, now 13, was born, and again after the birth of her second daughter, Lucy, now seven.
‘As a working mum you are so busy with the day to day routine of school runs and looking after the children that you forget to look after yourself.
‘It was only when I was on holiday that I had time to take a step back and really look at myself and how much I’d changed.
‘My holiday pictures of me in a bikini made me feel sick because I had just been eating anything and everything and didn’t think of the consequences of looking so big.
‘I no longer enjoyed clothes shopping – spotting something gorgeous at the front of the rail in a size eight only to work your way to the back to the larger sizes, and suddenly that gorgeous item is a tent.
‘Now I love shopping and had great fun this summer picking out a new bikini for a return trip to Turkey. This time I looked and felt so much better on the beach as a size 12 rather than a 16 after losing six inches from my top, six from my waist and six from my thighs.’
Shirley puts her weight gain down to snacking and eating heavy meals at work.
‘I work night shift and have three tea breaks. Each time I was having a biscuit and a hot chocolate. Now I take in my own sandwich, yoghurt, fruit and water
‘When I was overweight, I felt tired all the time and it annoyed me every time I looked in the mirror. I’m not ever going back on that road again. Now I have a lot more energy and can run and play more with my children. I don’t get out of breath at work anymore. I’m happier and healthier inside and out.’