County Durham charity CEO who shed five stone recognised success after being told she was no longer 'big boss'

Jennifer Trotter slimmed from a size 22 to a size 14
Jennifer Trotter slimmed from a size 22 to a size 14 -Credit:Slimming World

When charity CEO Jennifer Trotter was introduced as "the big boss" and someone responded "she isn't big", that was the moment she realised she had finally made a change.

The 51-year-old, from Durham, had spent her life in a cycle of failed fad diets before gaining more weight. And as she started to reach her biggest she began avoiding leaving the house to socialise.

Jennifer said: "The more weight I gained, the more I stayed in, avoiding going places purely because I hated having to shop for clothes. I always just bought things to fit, and never what I actually liked.

"If I did any walking my legs would ache, my ankles would swell and the skin would crack on my feet."

It was then that Jennifer decided to join a friend at Slimming World without telling family or any of her wider friendship group for fear she would fail.

"I never shared with anyone when I first joined, only my friend and my husband because I was convinced I would fail. I thought everyone must be sick of me saying I am going to lose weight then not achieve it, so I just thought try it first."

But with the support of members at the Kingston Park morning group she managed to stay on track and shed 5st 2lb, slimming from a size 22 to a size 14.

She switched from eating sauce-in-jar meals, pre-packed salads and sandwiches, as well as large bags of sweets, puddings and custard. And ditched the Indian takeaway food, fish and chips, or kebabs every weekend.

Soon they were replaced with Slimming World recipes, including curry, bolognese and chilli, stir fry, pasta salad and quiche. "[I] never ever buy a jar", Jennifer said, added that she will sometimes treat herself to a skinny latte, marshmallows and Hi Fi bars.

The mum-of-two added: "I work away, go out for meals and go on holiday. The biggest change is I can enjoy these and stay in control. I'll have a few extras but if I do go off the plan for a few days I don't feel good and always pleased to get back on it.

"Even if I gain a little weight I also go straight back to group and always think well I won't have put five stone back on."

Jennifer Trotter slimmed from a size 22 to a size 14
Jennifer Trotter slimmed from a size 22 to a size 14 -Credit:Slimming World

Jennifer said her weight loss has helped her to feel more confident and now she looks forward to social events when she gets an invite to go out. "I accept and then actually look forward to find something to wear and going," she explained.

She said she has started walking a lot more with her two dogs and can now swim also without any problems. But the moment when she noticed how much of a change she has made to her lifestyle is when she was introduced during a work speech as "the big boss".

Jennifer added: "Just recently at work I was introduced by a manager saying 'this is Jennifer the big boss' the lady replied 'well she isn't big is she?' and I thought, I must look normal size now! It was a good feeling."