Neath slimmer's lighter outlook on life
THERE was no midlife crisis involved when Lindsey Evans decided she needed a new relationship.
With her 40th birthday getting closer and her waistline getting bigger she decided enough was enough.
The new relationship she formed was actually with her food — and less than two years later Lindsey, from Neath, has not just turned 40 but has turned herself into a super-slimmer.
When she joined Slimming World in 2010 she weighed a hefty 25 stone 10.5lb. Now she's a sleek 9 stone 8lb. To save you doing the maths, that means she's 16 stone 2.5 lb lighter.
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Her Slimming World group colleagues were so impressed they voted her their representative in the organisation's annual Woman of the Year competition.
Lindsey then earned a place as one of the 47 women from across the UK and Ireland to reach the final stages.
Now, after the semi-final — which saw her meet Dancing On Ice and Emmerdale star Matthew Wolfenden — she has gone forward to the national finals, with a holiday in St Lucia the prize for the winner.
"I'd tried so many times and so many ways to lose weight before, usually depriving myself of the foods I enjoy, counting calories and going hungry," Lindsey explained. "Unsurprisingly my attempts usually failed miserably.
"Slimming World was completely different to anything I'd known before. I did have to make changes to the way I cooked and ate but they were small changes made easy.
"I loved tucking into delicious healthy meals and watching the pounds fall off. It was great to prepare meals that suited my family and friends too so we've all benefited from eating more healthily.
"Often they couldn't believe they were eating 'healthy' food."
If her motivation ever faded, she said, her consultant Arlene Smith and members of the Tuesday night group at Neath Pensioners' Hall were there to remind her how far she had come.
"Each week we talk about coping with different challenges coming up and share recipes, practical advice and handy tips like offers we've seen in local supermarkets.
"We laugh a lot too and I love going to the group. I've made so many friends. Thanks to them and my weight loss I'm a more confident person as well as a slimmer one."
Her consultant Arlene said: "Lindsey is not only looking fabulous, she is a brilliant example of the difference changing your eating habits can make.
"By developing a new relationship with food she's turned her life around.
"Lindsey's added years to her life and her success is inspiring other people in the group and Neath to turn their health around and help us beat obesity in the area."