A MIDWIFE has taken delivery of a new life after shedding half her body weight.
Alison Richardson, who once tipped the scales at 19 stone 6lbs, felt trapped in her overweight body, which she says hindered her work and social life.
But today, after losing 9st 8lbs, the 50 year old is half the woman she used to be – and says she has a whole new lease of life.
“It was OK when I was at work as my uniform was a barrier,” the mum-of-two, from Ashbrooke, said. “But after I finished work I would just go home, I had no social life because I felt so uncomfortable in my size.
“I do 12-hour night shifts and on the surface I was a smiley, happy midwife but I was exhausted from running about. Working in health, I felt like a hypocrite because I felt I should be setting an example.”
After turning 50 and piling on more pounds when she injured her knee in a fall, Alison, who works at Sunderland Royal Hospital, decided to tackle her weight.
“I’d been overweight for 24 years since the birth of my son,” said Alison, who is mum to Ashleigh, 26, and Michael, 24. “Over the years, I’d tried fad diets and would lose a bit of weight, but would always put it back on.
“Two years ago I fell in the snow and twisted my knee.
“I was off work for six months and put on even more weight. I thought ‘if I don’t lose it now, I never will’.”
Alison joined the Monday morning branch of Slimming World at St John’s Methodist Church, Ashbrooke, in May last year and it took her just over a year to slim from a size 24 to a 10.
She now weighs 9st 11lbs and says she has a new zest for life: “I feel fabulous, I go out all the time now. I don’t want to be in the house.
“My work friends used to ask me places before and I’d always say no.
“Now I ask them what we’re doing tonight,” she said. “I have so much more energy, I never sit down.”
Alison was voted the Woman of the Year by fellow members at her slimming group.
Gill Whitfield, who runs the group, said: “Alison has been such an inspiration to the other members, it’s lovely to see her get to where she wants to be.”
What Alison ate before:
Breakfast: Toast with lots of butter and jam
Lunch: She would snack all day on biscuits, toast and crisps
Tea: A takeaway
What Alison eats now:
Breakfast: Porridge with fruit
Lunch: Jacket potato or omelette
Tea: Stir fry or a pasta dish