An inspiring Warwick mum who lost half her body weight in a year says her weight-loss journey is a fitting tribute to her mother.
Laura Raines joined a weekly Slimming World group that met at St Margaret’s Church in Whitnash in January 2017 after a friend asked her to go with her.
Now a year on from when she first joined, the 40 year old has lost 11 stone 8lbs and has gone from a size 28 in clothing to a size 14.
Laura feels that her weight- loss journey is a real tribute to her mum.
She said: “Many years ago my mum was diagnosed with cancer. When she became really ill she spoke to me about my weight and being around for my own children. It was the last thing she asked me to do.
“It took a few years to actually do anything about her wish because at the time I just don’t think I was ready, then my friend Verity asked me to go along to Slimming World so it was the perfect opportunity to give it ago.
“If I’m honest I never believed it would work. I tried diets before but always gave up when I didn’t get the results I wanted.
“I was very nervous about going to the meetings. I hated walking through those doors thinking everyone was looking at me or laughing thinking ‘God, look at the size of her’.
“The first week I stuck to the plan that Jess, my consultant, went through on the induction. The next week I went in and the anticipation of waiting for the number on the scales was immense, but I lost 6lbs. I continued and the second week I lost another 4lbs and in the fourth week I lost a further 10lbs, which was my biggest loss in a week.
“In all my time at the group I’ve only gained three times, but only small amounts.
“I’ve been lucky with my journey, it’s been good to me. Nearly every week losing more made me more determined to continue.
“The hardest part I would say is going for meals out and having to ask the staff 100 questions to make sure I stay on plan and a few times I’ve had people ask if I’m ill because the weight loss is so extreme.
“I’ve lost 11 stone 8 lbs to date and I can’t put into words how proud my mum would be. She was an amazing lady and this amazing thing I have done was not only for me but for her too.”
Laura’s partner, Darren Ricketts, also helped her during her journey.
She said: “My family have been great. My partner cooks me the Slimming World meals.
“My in-laws were surprised and they are super proud. I still don’t think my partner believes I did it.
“I feel amazing. It’s funny when I’m walking past shop windows getting a glimpse of myself and suddenly realising ‘oh that’s me’.
“I’ve gone from a size 28 to a 14. It’s crazy that I have gone from thinking this was never going to work to nearly being at my target. It makes me speechless and the friends I made along the way and the support from the group is amazing.”