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‘I didn’t want to carry on’ - Norwich woman Jen Smith who lost 13 stone in 18 months

Jen Smith at 24 stone on New Years Day 2015. Photo: Jen Smith

Jen Smith at 24 stone on New Years Day 2015. Photo: Jen Smith

Jen Smith

Three years ago Jen Smith weighed 24 stone, was miserable and had no social life.

Jen Smith's weightloss transformation. Photo: Jen Smith Jen Smith's weightloss transformation. Photo: Jen Smith

But after watching one of her friends go into intensive care, she made the life changing decision to ditch her unhealthy habits and lose more than 13 stone before it killed her.

Miss Smith, of Hellesdon, struggled with a size 30 waist line and rarely left the house but at the age of 27, she decided enough was enough.

“I was incredibly depressed. I didn’t have a social life, I was miserable, I thought if I don’t do something about my life I don’t want to carry on, after seeing what happened to my friend I realised I was going to head the same way.”

The 30 year old started her weight loss journey by dieting for two years. She was able to lose two stone just by changing what she ate but this was a slow process.

Jen Smith's weightloss progression. Photo: Jen Smith Jen Smith's weightloss progression. Photo: Jen Smith

“I was completely inactive,” she added, “I wanted to start getting fit but I didn’t have the confidence to go to a public gym.

“I love swimming but I’d never be seen dead in a swimsuit. So I searched online and was able to find a private studio.”

Under the wing of personal trainer Lee Ashford, Miss Smith started attending regular sessions before moving into boot camp classes.

“It was terrifying, I struggled to go through the warm-up, but I gradually increased the classes and now do five a week.”

Jen Smith now loves boxing. Photo: Jen Smith Jen Smith now loves boxing. Photo: Jen Smith

In just 18 months she dropped 13 stone, the equivalent of 86 bags of sugar, now weighing just over 11 stone.

“In the back of my mind I never thought I’d be able to do it. But being the size I am now and to have so many people say that I have inspired them, that’s something that makes me proud.

“I get a real buzz out of trying to help people achieve the same thing as I did as I know how good that feels.”

After dropping the fat Miss Smith has become a personal trainer. In November of last year she passed gym instructor and Boxercise courses and is setting up her own personal training business while also pursuing a boxing career.

Jen Smith after completing a run. Photo: Rosalee Marshall Photography Jen Smith after completing a run. Photo: Rosalee Marshall Photography

“I want to push boxing in my personal training as it was a really good release for my depression and anxiety. It’s really exciting but quit scary. This is a new start, a new journey for me” she added.

Miss Smith has had one amateur fight which she lost, but she isn’t letting that defeat her.

Jen Smith’s weight loss tips

Jen Smith’s amazing journey would not have been possible without an exercise routine and healthy diet. Here are some of her top tips for shedding the pounds.

• Eating healthy - make sure you are getting the correct amount of each food group. Miss Smith made sure she had 10 different fruit and vegetables each day.

• Do not under cut calories - the only calories that should be lost is through exercise

• Regular exercise is key - Don’t expect changes over night, you have to keep working to see results.

• Keep motivated - Join group classes or get a personal trainer to help you keep pushing.

• Set goals for yourself - Miss Smith completed the Norwich Half Marathon, Tough Mudder and the Tour De Broads during her training.

* Cook fresh - Food products contain added sugar and salt that can be left out when using raw ingredients.

* Avoid snacking - Switch out the crisp for carrots.

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