Woman loses 3st still eating cake after dad’s death saw her pile on the pounds

A slimmer who has lost more than three stone thanks to Slimming World says she can still have cake while not piling on the pounds.

To celebrate their first taster back in group, one Carlisle Slimming World group celebrated with a bake-off raising money for a local charity.

Read more: Cumbria grandma’s amazing five stone weight loss as pictures show her transformation

Members made a variety of Slimming World friendly cakes, muffins, cupcakes and biscuits as well as savoury delights – all that were sticking to the Slimming World eating plan.

Consultant Emma Davies says she is excited to be back to ‘real life’ groups helping members to lose weight and improve their health in person.

Emma Davies after her weight loss
Emma Davies after her weight loss

Emma became a Slimming World consultant following her own weight loss journey. She said she wanted to help others become happier and healthier – particularly at a time when obesity is causing so many problems.

Talking about her own journey of losing weight, Emma explained: “I know first hand how it feels to be unhappy in your own skin. I initially lost three and a half stone following Slimming World’s Food Optimising Plan, achieving my personal target in early 2016, sadly my dad was soon after diagnosed with asbestos which was terminal.

“My dad was my biggest cheerleader in my weight loss journey, often commenting on how much food I could eat and continue to lose weight.

“It completely baffled him if I’m honest, I would just reply because it’s free food, I can eat it until I’m full. My dad always said the passion for Slimming World oozed from me and I should become a consultant.

“During the following months that followed, I stopped attending my local Slimming World Group. We managed to go on a family holiday with my mam, dad, my own family, my sisters and their families to Spain, and we made some magical memories. My dad’s health deteriorated and he sadly passed away on November 24, 2016, a few days after my birthday.

“By the time 2017 came around, I had regained the entire three and a half stone. I was totally mortified when I realised I was back where I started, it had taken me two years to lose the weight and here I was 12 months later back to my original weight.

“I was totally ashamed of myself and once again, I was unhappy in my own skin. “

Emma felt embarrassed that she had let herself down and was creeping back into her old habits and didn’t find it easy walking back into her Slimming World group.

She continued: “I needn’t have worried though, I was met with a warm friendly welcome and no judgement at all. This time around I was even more determined, I joined the social team in my group helping out at pay, I also stayed to group every week which I hadn’t done previously, each week was different, sharing ideas, recipes, top tips etc.

“I tried new foods and meals I’d never had before. My passion for food and cooking returned and I loved seeing the results on the scales each week.

“It wasn’t entirely plain sailing, there were weeks that were trickier than others, but with the support of my consultant and my slimming world family, I remained determined to get back to my happy place. In just eight months I lost the three and a half stone regaining my personal target.

“Staying to group each week helped me to learn about myself as a slimmer, identify my trigger foods and self sabotage traps. I also learned to be kinder to myself, the psychology behind slimming is completely fascinating.

“I became a Slimming World Consultant in November 2017 and have managed to maintain my personal target ever since. Although I am a Slimming World Consultant with my own groups I remain a Slimming World member and continue to attend my own group each week. This is one of the reasons I have continued to maintain my weight, I know that for me personally, I need a weekly check-in with my group to help stop the old habits from creeping back in like they did before.”

Emma Davies at the Slimming World ball this year
Emma Davies at the Slimming World ball this year

Slimming World groups were temporarily held virtually during lockdowns and have now made their comeback and lockdown was something Emma found particularly difficult.

Emma said: “Our incredible groups are the heart of Slimming World. Food Optimising coupled with the ideas, support, friendship, and that sense of community each week is a powerful combination, and it is unique to Slimming World.

“Our virtual groups were a vital lifeline of support, and I am so, so proud of how my members have been there for each other through these difficult months and continued to lose weight and get more active.

“There’s nothing quite like the magic of our real-life groups, though, and research of our member’s during lockdown has shown that while our members have loved attending their virtual groups, they’ve missed the motivational power and accountability of meeting in person each week.”

During the bake-off celebrations, people made scotch eggs, naan bread, crustless quiche, couscous, mini pavlova, sausage rolls, soups, sticky hoisin sausages and flapjack. In total £100 was raised for Eden Valley Hospice.

Emma said the health and safety of her members have been a top priority when returning to group. She continued: “Members will find a few things have changed in our groups to ensure that everyone feels as safe, confident and comfortable as they possibly can.

“This includes appropriate social distancing, hygiene measures and shorter sessions, what has not changed is the gorgeous warm welcome, feeling of togetherness and the joy of being ‘in it together’ week on week.

Vanilla cupcakes made for the taster sessions
Vanilla cupcakes made for the taster sessions

“As well as looking forward to ‘that feeling’ of being back together with our existing Slimming World members, we can’t wait to welcome new members in Carlisle to our groups too.

“Obesity is a huge issue in the news now with evidence showing that carrying extra weight makes it harder for the body to fight Covid-19, and the Government announcing brand-new plans to tackle obesity across the UK – which Slimming World are immensely proud to be part of.

“Plus, we know many people’s routines were turned upside down by lockdown and lots of us have been feeling more worried or anxious than usual, all of which can have an impact on making healthy choices.”

Emma, who has lost three and a half stone herself, and has maintained that loss, added: “I want anyone who’s worrying about their weight or health – especially if they’ve put on a few extra pounds during lockdowns – to know that there will be absolutely no judgement at a Slimming World group – just lots of understanding and a very warm welcome. At Slimming World losing weight is not about going hungry – our eating plan is extra easy, unbelievably delicious, and super generous. And moving more does not mean running marathons – unless you want to, of course.

“Our groups are hubs of recipe-swapping, idea-sharing and problem-solving activity. Through our weekly sessions, you will discover how to identify the stoppers and potential pitfalls that could send you off track – or that have prevented you from reaching your weight-loss goals in the past – and learn to develop strategies to overcome them.

“The new healthy habits you’ll discover will soon become habits of a lifetime, and there really is no better time to start a fresh when it comes to developing new lifelong healthy habits around food and activity because, as many of the members of my groups have seen, when you lose weight, you’re already doing one of the very best things you can to future-proof your health.”

Mini pavlova made for the bake-off session
Mini pavlova made for the bake-off session

Emma’s Slimming World groups in Carlisle are open and are held every Thursday at Carlisle United Football Club. Additional groups have been added to enable shorter sessions and are now held at 9am, 10:30am, 4pm, 5:30pm and 7pm For more information contact Emma on 07712285590 or visit www.slimmingworld.co.uk for details of over 100 further groups that are also now open in the area.

Becoming a consultant was one of the best decisions Emma made. She said: “Becoming a Slimming World Consultant is the best decision I ever made, other than joining Slimming World as a member, it quite literally gave me life. I was unhappy, I avoided doing activities with my kids, I wore oversized clothes to hide myself away.

“Now I am much more confident, never did I ever think you’d see me wearing dresses and feeling pretty good too.

“Since losing the weight I no longer avoid any activities unless it’s too scary, like zip-wiring on adrenaline-filled trips on holidays. But I do now get on the swimming pools, wear bikinis, go snorkelling and do things like that with my kids, which I would have avoided beforehand.

“Seeing the transformation in my members, not just physically but mentally too, their growth in confidence, it truly is the best feeling in the world, knowing that I have helped support them to get to their happy place.”

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