The future looks bright for a Hartlepool family as they go in to the New Year having shed 20 stone between them.
Helana Davies, 24, partner Jamie Northey, 28, and mum Thelma Davies, 60, are starting off 2018 the healthy way having lost the weight that was holding them back for years.
Helana and Jamie saw their weight creep up after falling into the trap of convenience food and takeaways to fit around work and caring for their daughter, Leila Northey, two.
At her heaviest, 5ft 6.5in Helana - who is now a swim instructor with Puddle Ducks - weighed 18st 12lb and was a size 22-24.
While 6ft 2in partner Jamie was 22st 2lb and a size XXXL.
Unhappy with how they felt, the couple from Bishop Cuthbert decided to join Slimming World at West View community Centre in September 2016 after being inspired by their neighbours who had lost weight through the group.
A year on, Helana had managed to shed 8st, slimming down to a healthy 10st 12lb and a size 8-10.
Jamie also lost an incredible 6st and now weighs 16st 5lb.
Helana said: “I had been big for years, but before I had my daughter I went to university and put on 2st as I was miserable being away from home. “From here my weight just went up and up and I avoided things because I was so uncomfortable in my skin. “So when Jamie suggested joining Slimming World, I thought what have I got to lose?
“I didn’t tell anyone I was joining in case it was another diet I failed at, but to my surprise I didn’t fail.
“In our first two weeks I had lost 12lb and Jamie had lost 18lb.
“By my third week I had gotten my stone award and was ready to tell everyone that I had joined Slimming World. “I haven’t looked back since and feel so different and better in myself.
“Nobody recognises me now I have lost the weight! “People who I have known for years look at me and don’t know who I am until I say it’s me!”
Their weight loss even inspired Helana’s mum Thelma, a Hartlepool Borough Council employee, from Dyke House, to sign up just one month after the pair.
She lost an amazing 6st - going from weighing 18st 4lb and a size 24, to 12st 3lb and a size 14 by July 2017.
And Helana and Jamie’s little girl has also learned healthy eating habits from them and even prefers fruit to chocolate or sweets.
Helena added: “Since then I have happily maintained my weight, feeling like the person I have always wanted to be.
“I thought that I would always be fat and never dreamt I would be fitting in size 8 to 10 clothes rather than a 20 to 22.
“The biggest difference I made when I joined Slimming World, was my approach to food.
“Rather than living on ready meals and takeaways, I found my love for cooking. “It is so easy to make a few changes, like Fry Light rather than oil, that can make a big difference.”
“I can now do all the things I wanted to do with my girl without stopping for breath every five minutes. “Most importantly we know we are going to be around to see her grow up.”
Breakfast: Skipped or a packet of biscuits.
Lunch: Crisps, sandwich or ready meal.
Dinner: Chips and fried chicken, takeaways twice a week or meals out such as curry and pizza.
Snacks: Crisps or chocolate and fruit.
Breakfast: Cereal or Slimming World pancakes.
Lunch: Salad, pasta, steak and potatoes.
Dinner: Homemade lasagne, spaghetti bolognaise, curry, paella.