Name: Stephanie Hammel
Height: 5ft 9in
Start weight: 22 stone 5lbs
End weight: 12 stone 5lbs
Start size: 26
End size: 12-14
How I got to this point:
“I have never been a skinny girl but when I gave up dancing at 17 I really started to pile on the weight. While I was dancing I was training up to four times a week and taking part in competitions.
"But after I gave up I didn’t take up any other exercise although I was still consuming the same amount of food that had been required while I was training. I hate to admit it now but I was also a secret eater. I thought if no-one saw me eating then it didn’t count – never a good way to be!
“I’d always known that I needed to lose weight and often told myself that I was going to diet, but never started one.”
"My turning point came while on a night out. I was approached by a man who threw his drink all over me and called me ‘disgusting’ because I was overweight. It was a wake-up call. I never wanted to feel the way he’d made me feel again.
"I also started to think about the potential health problems I could face in the future due to being obese and decided that while I was still young it was the best time to do something about my weight and create a healthier life for myself."
How I lost the weight:
“I had never followed a proper diet before but after researching and reading the success stories on the web I knew The Cambridge Diet was the one for me.
"It was controlled and I knew how much and what I was having, I did it in a very structured manner which I could fit into my work and home life.
“When I started the diet a lot of people doubted me. They didn’t think I’d stick with it – so proving people wrong has given me an extra boost of confidence.
"The only difficulty I found really was missing out on nights out with friends, which may have involved going out for meals. But when it came to a night on the tiles I would always stick to soda water or the odd vodka and diet coke.
"When you embark on a diet like this you don’t realise how much food impacts on your life. The thing that helped pull me through was knowing that I was going to be healthier and happier and could buy whatever clothes I wanted at the end."
How I feel since losing weight:
"Since losing weight my life has changed so much, I am a lot happier and healthier and have the best wardrobe ever now! It’s such a good feeling knowing I can just go into shop I want for clothes.
"There’s so many things that you take for granted, such as being able to get between cars in a car park or not having to use a seat belt extension on the plane."
Stephanie was named the Cambridge Weight Plan's Woman Of The Year.
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