When Angela England got married to Martin she remembers feeling like a “fat, sweaty blob” on that wonderful day. Looking back as her daughter’s wedding was coming up, she decided that she wanted to feel differently on this special day.
Angela wanted to be rememberd as the mother of the bride, not the obese mother of the bride as she helped her daughter celebrate her wedding day.
12 stone down in her weight, and she was able to look at wedding pictures in a different way than her own wedding photos. She was able to be proud of how she looked that day, not unhappy.
Angela: “On my wedding day I was a fat sweaty blob in a massive marquee of a meringue dress, and understandably shied away from the camera. I think I only ever got our wedding album out twice, hating to look at those pictures of me.”
Prior to her weight loss journey, Angela had developed some habits that certainly led to her weight issues. She was prone to eating takeout food rather than healthy food, and having her meals and biscuits in bed at the end of the day. This had brought her to a weight of 23 stone, and significant health concerns with high blood pressure and diabetes.
Over the years, she had lost and put on more than 50 stone with yo-yo dieting since her early adult life.
When Angela’s daughter Laura (a nursery nurse) got engaged, and was preparing to marry her boyfriend Dan Rose, Angela decided it was time to change things in her life.
She said: “I was overjoyed but suddenly thought how I might not be there to see any grandchildren. I thought how selfish and stupid I’d been. I blew the dust off my wedding album and stared at those pictures and, wiping away the tears, swore I wouldn’t be the same sweaty blob at Laura’s wedding that I’d been at my own.”
As motivation, Angela pulled out her own wedding photo album, and looked at those photos daily to keep her moving on her weight loss goal. As her first step, she stopped her evening food binges which gave her excellent results, a loss of 9 pounds on her own.
When she needed more assistance to lose more weight, she joined Weight Watchers for support and advice. Angela said: “I’d tried Weight Watchers multiple times before, but it hadn’t worked because my head wasn’t in the right place. I knew the change in lifestyle and mentality would work this time. I didn’t want a faddy yo-yo diet “.
Then, in addition to being careful with her diet choices and eating habits, she added in exercise. Walking became her mode of travel rather than driving for shorter distances.
She said: “When I started, I couldn’t walk up the stairs without having to stop halfway to catch my breath. Now I regularly walk one and a half miles into town and back. I’m so full of energy.”
Her weight continued to drop. She kept working at it. Laura’s wedding was last July 30th, and at that time Angela had dropped her weight to 11 stone 3 pounds. She no longer wore a size 24, but wore a size 14. 12 stones of weight were gone. Her hard work had paid off.
She said: “I threw myself in front of the camera at every opportunity. I lapped up the compliments, because, unlike at my own wedding, this time I knew they were real.”
Angela was so enthused by her progress, that she and Martin made the decision to renew their vows. She said: “I wanted a photo of the new me compared to the old me. I felt like I’d been reborn.” In less than two weeks, the couple renewed their vows in the church they were married in in Urswick in 2005. Laura and Dan were able to be a part of the renewal celebration.
In December, Angela hit a great milestone, she got down to her goal weight of 10 stone 10 pounds.
If you were to ask Laura, she would tell you that she she knew that when she got engaged, her mother would work to lose the weight and make health changes for good. Laura lives with her husband Dan in Woverhampton where he is a maths-lecturer.
Laura said: “Unlike all the other doomed diet attempts – where Mum would start with a look of despair in her eyes – this time she just seemed happier, like she was ready for the fight and would enjoy it.
Angela has now reached a comfortable size 12, has achieved not only weight goals but health goals and will soon see her grandchildren grow, as Laura and Dan prepare to welcome their first baby in July.
“I cried at that final weigh-in, remembering the years of bullying as a child, the yo-yo dieting through so many years as an adult, then how I’d finally achieved my dream,” Angela said. “I’ll be the gran I always wanted to be – I have to pinch myself to think I used to take a tin of biscuits to bed.”