AN OVERWEIGHT Evesham nurse has changed her lifestyle for the better thanks to an item broadcast on radio.
Michele Haslam, a nurse at Evesham Community Hospital, was driving home when she heard about a call for six volunteers.
As part of the Elephant in the Room Challenge put together by radio station Touch FM, volunteers would undergo training sessions and receive nutritional advice for 12 weeks with the intention of collectively losing 200 pounds, the combined weight of a baby elephant.
Each volunteer would be expected to lose three pounds a week and in total three and a half stone.
Five-foot-six Michele was nineteen stone with a dress size of 22 and she totally lacked self-confidence.
“I was the heaviest of the participants and had always struggled with my weight, trying most weight-loss plans but never achieving long-term loss,” she said.
“By November I’d reached my heaviest adult weight ever, was constantly tired and fed up, even avoiding a social life.”
“After the first session I thought I’d never walk again. The trainers nudged me along gently, giving lots of advice into the correct use of gym equipment, how to train properly and how this would benefit both my health and weight.
“As the work-outs progressed I noticed I was controlling my breathing better and able to do a little more each time.
“I feel so much better being fit. Working out in the gym has become a natural part of my life now, as has eating sensibly.
“I find I’m sleeping much better than before, have far more energy and a positive attitude to life.
“I keep some of my old clothes in the wardrobe just to remind me of the old Michele,” she added.
The marketing team at Wildmoor Spa and Health Club in Stratford-upon-Avon wanted to break down the public perception of gymnasiums being just for fitness fanatics.
Wildmoor’s Marketing Manager Marc Mewis says: “The focus was on exercise, nutrition and lifestyle change.
“We wanted it to be sustainable for every individual, so it was really about lifestyle education, helping the participants acquire the tools to make a permanent difference to their life.