BUSY mum-of-three Alison Povey knew she had piled on the pounds but could not summon up the motivation to do anything about it.
But last August worries about her health came as a wake-up call.
“I put a lot of weight on when I was pregnant and thought it was okay to eat for two.
“I had become very lazy and the pounds had piled on and stayed on. But last summer I realised things had to change for the sake of my children.”
At her heaviest 24-year-old Alison was a size 22. But now, just over a year after joining Curves gym in Brighouse, she has shed more than 62lbs in weight and is a down to a trim size 12-14.
Alison’s aim initially was to be able to wear a dress for her husband’s birthday last November.
“He happened to say that he hadn’t seen me in a dress and that gave me the incentive to lose weight. I didn’t manage it for his birthday - but I made it in time for Christmas. It was so pleasing to me to be able to wear a dress. People have been so encouraging and commented on how good I look.”
Alison has three children - Cassidy, aged seven, Chloe, six, and four-year-old Harvey - and she got into the routine of walking them to Field Lane Primary School and then heading into Curves on three or four mornings a week.
“It has just became part of my day. I can come into the gym for just half-an-hour and then get on with the rest of the day.
“I have made real friends here and everyone is very supportive.”
That support was vital to Alison when her father, Malcolm Povey, died recently after suffering from cancer for three years.
“My dad was so encouraging when I was trying to lose weight. I was determined to give something back to Cancer Research so I decided to do the Race for Life at Savile Park, Halifax, with my daughter Cassidy.
“We ran all the way round and completed the 5km in 50 minutes. I never would have been able to attempt it before losing weight and I was so proud that we did it together. I really enjoyed myself. The girls at the gym sponsored us and we raised more than £200.”
For Alison the biggest surprise is how quickly the weight has come off.
“I was prepared for it to be a really long haul but once I got into a routine, the pounds just fell off.
“I have so much more energy for the children and I feel healthier than I have done for years.”
Jan Slocombe, who runs the Curves gym in Brighouse, said Alison had been an inspiration.
“Alison has been through a difficult time, with her dad’s illness, but she managed to stay focussed. The great thing about belonging to a gym like ours is that everyone is so supportive and encouraging.
“When people join us, I always ask them what they want to achieve. The first thing they usually say is that they want to be able to walk up the stairs to the gym without gasping for breath.
“And within a few weeks of starting they are doing that easily.
“A lot of it is about building up members’ confidence and making them feel that their goals are achievable.”
l During October, which is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Curves is waiving its joining fee in return for a donation to the Breast Cancer Care charity.
For more information contact 01484 400031.