Healthy new look is just the start
WHAT a difference a year makes for Gemma Rist, who is celebrating feeling fit and fabulous this festive season. Seeing an unflattering photo of herself at a party last Christmas proved the inspiration for Gemma, 25, to transform her life.
WHAT a difference a year makes for Gemma Rist, who is celebrating feeling fit and fabulous this festive season.
Seeing an unflattering photo of herself at a party last Christmas proved the inspiration for Gemma, 25, to transform her life.
Since February Gemma, from Hemsby, has shed more than four stone and dropped eight dress sizes.
Her achievement is all the more admirable as Gemma suffers from an ovary disorder that made it difficult to shed weight.
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Previously 15st11lb, she now tips the scales at 11st5lb and has got herself trim and toned attending the gym five times a week.
A nursery nurse supervisor at Great Yarmouth College, Gemma enjoyed showing off her new figure in front of the camera at this year's staff Christmas party.
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“Seeing what I looked like last year inspired me to do something about my weight and it is great to have reached my goal,” she said
“I have always been a healthy eater, but thought it was OK to have as much as I wanted, so the big difference was cutting down on portion sizes.
“My GP said I could struggle to lose weight because I suffer with an ovary condition, but that was not going to deter me.
“Previously I did no exercise at all, but now go down the gym five nights a week and attend a couple of exercise classes.”
Initially losing two stone after joining a Weight Watchers club gave Gemma the confidence to start attending Bwell gym in Yarmouth.
Since then reaping the benefits of her healthy lifestyle, her weight has continued fall and self-esteem soared.
Mum Angela, dad Terry and boyfriend Mark and work colleagues are all full of admiration for Gemma's achievements.
She said: “I feel a lot more confident and energetic and being slimmer has helped me at work where I have to be very active looking after young children.
“Everyone has been really supportive - Mark loved me as I was, but he is quite pleased with how I look now. It is great when people I haven't seen for a while say that they hardly recognise me.
“The only downside is I must have spent hundreds of pounds on clothes in the last few months.”
Not content with resting on her laurels, Gemma is now hoping to lose another stone in the new year.
She has already received a Weight Watchers gold award after reaching her target weight.
Group leader Bridget Willets said: “Gemma is a true inspiration and attended classes every week without fail.
“She inspired every member and always did what was expected of her, it was also great to know that Gemma did what the doctors said she couldn't achieve.”
For more information on the club, which meets at the Kings Centre in Yarmouth, call Bridget on 07515 715416.