Success has no age limit
70-year-old former-singer Patricia Fox-Hutchison from Stoke-on-Trent is looking forward to her slim seventh decade thanks to losing over 7 stones* and keeping it off for 1 year.
"When I was a child, I couldn’t gain weight if I tried. Even after having my three children, I was still a size 12. By my late 40s, I’d swapped my job as a professional singer for a quieter day job managing an office and shop. It was then that I noticed a few pounds creeping on. I tried a number of crash diets, none of which worked because after a few days of starving myself I’d give up and eat everything in sight. As the years went by, I got heavier and heavier, until I reached nearly 17st.
"At my biggest, I couldn’t take my grandchildren to the park or walk up the slightest hill without needing frequent rests. I stopped wearing makeup and looking after my hair, and lived in shapeless elasticated clothes bought from a charity shop. Then my lovely son Daniel offered to buy me an outfit for Christmas 2011. I burst into tears and told him nothing would look good on me… so instead, he suggested what turned out to be my best present ever – a 12-week Slimming World Countdown.
I started eating healthier versions of my favourite meals, such as fish pie and curry, and made sure my snacks were Free Foods. Everything tasted so much better!
"I really looked forward to going to group and found that for any problem I encountered, someone already had a solution. If I began to struggle between group sessions, my amazing Consultant Paula would send me a motivational text to give me a lift. Even when I felt close to giving up, her support kept me going all the way to target nearly three years later...
"Losing weight has made me feel so much younger. I must look it, too – recently, I bumped into an acquaintance who was concerned that if I lost any more weight I’d end up ‘all wrinkled’ when I got to her age… it turned out she was six years younger than me! When I take my grandchildren out these days, I’m the one suggesting a jog. Hills are a doddle and I work out regularly with a skipping rope. The local kids stared at first; now they join in!
"I feel fitter at 70 than I did at 50 or 60 – I’m having a ball. People ask if that milestone birthday was the reason I lost weight. I tell them, no – the special occasion I lost weight for was life."
How I’m making weight loss last
- I still go to group for ideas and encouragement each week. It’s great to know there’s always help available.
- Even now, I keep photos of the ‘old me’ handy to give me a boost when my motivation is faltering.
*Weight loss will vary due to your individual circumstances and how much weight you have to lose
You'll find more delicious recipe and menu ideas at your local group, along with all the help you need to get started and reach your target weight.