Alford Slimming World opened their doors for the first time in July last year and in just 12 months members have lost a phenomenal total of 528 stones (7,394 lbs).
In just 52 weeks, Alford’s Greatest Loser has so far lost a staggering 7 stones 8.5 lbs.
Gemma Gilruth, full-time teacher and mum to Sophia (21 months) joined the new Alford Slimming World group on opening night.
“After having my daughter my weight had reached an all-time high. I knew I needed to address it, so when I saw there was going to be a Slimming World group starting in Alford I decided enough was enough and that I would join,” she said.
“I had followed the plan before and knew it worked so I was determined to give it a go.”
Within the first year, 113 members in Alford have lost 10% of their body weight (and more) and are experiencing the health benefits that brings including reduced blood pressure, relieving back and joint pain, improving mood and self esteem, improving respiratory problems and mobility.
Gemma continued: “I used to suffer from terrible back pain and struggled to do physical activity.
“Now I exercise regularly and started running - something I always wanted to do but never thought I could. Attending the Zumba classes run by Jackie and Shona in Alford has been amazing and I have made some really great friends as well as having a fantastic time, it never fails to put a smile on my face!”
Julia Fry, who runs the Alford Slimming World group, says: “The changes we’ve seen in Gemma are incredible.
“I hope her success will inspire other people in Alford who’d like to lose weight by forming new lifestyle habits and become happier and healthier to take action.”
Gemma added: “Losing weight has allowed me to become a happier and healthier person both physically and mentally.
“My main motivation for losing weight is being healthy and being able to look after and play with my daughter.
“As a teacher losing weight has given me more confidence standing in front of a class and I was very fortunate to receive encouragement from both the staff and pupils of Alford Academy which was really lovely.
“My consultant Julia and the members of the Alford group are brilliant, I couldn’t have got to where I am today without them.
I still have a long way to go but I really hope to reach my target by Christmas,” she added.