A Preston woman has used her weight loss to take part in half marathons for charity.
Emily Birkett, who attends Weight Watchers at Lostock Hall County Primary School, has trained hard and followed a healthy diet to drop from 12st 81b to 11st 6lb.
Feeling better about herself, the 23-year-old competed the Wigan Half Marathon in March, raising £130 for Joining Jack charity which supports research into
Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. She is also is now in training for the Southport Half Marathon in July and the Preston 10k run in September with her work colleagues from VolkerStevin in Preston.
Emily said: “I have been trying to lose weight since I was 16. I could only get from my heaviest (12st 8lb) to 12st. I loved to exercise so that wasn’t an issue for me, but I couldn’t break through that 12st mark so I would give up, go back to 12st 8lbs and then do it all again.
“Joining Weight Watchers sparked an epiphany for me. I thought I was eating healthily having half a big tub of fruit yoghurt with granola and fruit. I couldn’t believe the amounts of sugar and fat that were in some things. Smart points really educated me about what I was putting in my body.”
“Over the months, just small changes have made a huge difference such as swapping flavoured yoghurt for 0 per cent fat Greek yoghurt or cooking with Passata instead of ready-made sauces.
“I remember just getting into my healthy BMI bracket (11st 6) and being so happy. I still have that weight taped to my scales as a reminder of how impossible that goal seemed before.
“I have wanted this for so long and now that I finally have it, I intend to keep it. I will keep challenging myself to keep hold of this feeling of being happy because I’m healthy.
“I had almost conquered my first challenge so it was time to pick another so I signed up for the Wigan Half marathon.
“I am now in training for the Southport Half Marathon in July with my partner Steven Wayne who is extremely supportive. I am also doing a 10k run in September for The Baby Beat Appeal at Royal Preston Hospital.”