A super slimmer has shed a whopping 13 stone after living in fear of being too fat to fit in seats in restaurants or on planes.
Carla FitzGerald has dropped from 23st to slim 10st in the past 14 months after her weight left her constantly being terrified she would be left red-faced about not being able to fit into seats in public.
The 34-year-old started her weight loss journey in January last year and successfully shed 13st during lockdown after struggling with her weight for her whole life.
Since losing over half her body weight, Carla no longer has to worry about whether or not she will be able to fit in the seats when going out for meals, or whether she will be too big for the seats on aeroplanes.
The transformation has allowed her to ditch her daily uniform of black leggings and black baggy jumpers and enjoy dressing up for the first time in her life.
Carla, from Dublin, said: “I decided I was ready to start my weight loss journey in January last year after going through some therapy to help me.
“I have struggled with my weight and disordered eating for as long as I can remember.
“I tried every diet under the sun but nothing would stick.
“Prior to my weight loss I had been diagnosed with food addiction, I was constantly thinking of where my next piece of food was coming from even while I was eating.
“I would go out on my lunch breaks from work and eat thousands of calories.
“Each day I would consume between 3000 and 5000 calories.
“I ate takeaway food every day for lunch while I was at work, and I would have a takeaway at least one evening a week too.
“If I wasn’t having a takeaway I would stuff myself with huge portions of pasta, nachos and just really carby and calorific food.
“But after going through my most recent bout of therapy, I realised my body wasn’t the enemy and I felt worthy of changing my life for the better.
“So I was ready to lose weight for the final time and began my calorie-controlled diet where I would be in a calorific deficit and walk for one hour each day.”
After years of avoiding mirrors, Carla said she doesn’t think she wasn’t actually aware of how big she was and tried to embrace her size for some time.
Her everyday life remained a real struggle however.
“I parked close to the shops because I couldn’t walk far and going upstairs was exhausting to me,” she added.
“I worried about being able to walk down the aisle of the bus in case I couldn’t fit.
“I was constantly worrying about situations such as going out for meals or lunch for work meetings in case the chairs had arms and I wouldn’t be able to fit in them.
“Going on holiday was even a nightmare for me because I’d panic about not fitting in the seat on the plane or finding a way to subtly ask for a seat belt extension.
“It was torture. But I don’t even have to think about things like that now. I feel so free.”
Carla, a social enterprise manager, made the best out of a bad situation when lockdown came into force and managed to lose a huge amount of weight.
Carla said: “I had lots of victories along the way with my weight loss. I remember the first time I was able to cross my legs, and the first time I could put my socks on while standing up.
“My skin started to glow, my eyes brightened and my hair was glossier.
“Reaching my goal weight just happened so fast it had been hard to get used to the way I am now. It’s still a shock when I see my reflection.
“I finally feel like the woman I have always wanted to be.
“I’ve put a lot of work into myself and it’s like I have unzipped myself and I am finally free.
“I am a different person now. I am full of pride, joy and hope. I’ve never felt like this before.”
To see more of Carla’s weight loss journey, search halfofcarla on Instagram and Youtube.
Carla’s food diary
Breakfast: Croissants, packet of raspberries and a larger coffee
Lunch: Large tray of takeaway sushi and a portion of Five Guys fries
Dinner: Chinese takeaway box: Salt and chilli chips and tofu, fried rice, curry sauce, spring rolls, soup and prawn crackers
Snacks; Tortilla crisps, cereal bars, pop corn, chocolate, bread with butter and cheese
Lunch: Salad packed with vegetables
Dinner: Vegan sausages, with roasted tomatoes, spinach and cauliflower
Snacks: Apple with peanut butter, fruit, vegan ham and lower calorie crisps.