Nurse, 35, loses HALF her body weight in a year after deciding she looked like her obese dogLucy Insley weighed a whopping 23 stone and struggled to fit into size 32 jeansShe dropped eight dress sizes and is now a slender size 14
12:07 GMT, 17 July 2012
They say pets often resemble their owners, but for one woman, this was a sad reality.
Lucy Insley, who weighed a whopping 23 stone saw a photo of her and her podgy pet Gracie and realised they looked identical.
It spurred her into action and she put both her and Gracie on a strict diet.
Whopping weight loss: Lucy Insley dropped a staggering eight dress sizes
In just over a year, she has lost almost 12 stone and Gracie is nearly 4lbs lighter.
Lucy, from Wisbech, Cambridgeshire, said: 'I didn’t realise just how big I had got until I saw the picture of me and my pug, Gracie.
'I was absolutely mortified by it. At that point I knew I had to do something about the pounds I’d piled on.
'It’s been hard but now I look and feel great. People stare at me for a different reason.'
Lucy Insley, 35, started piling on the
pounds as a teenager and by the time she hit 30 she struggled to squeeze
into her size 32 jeans.
In March last year, lacking in confidence and energy, Lucy decided to join the Cambridge Weight Plan.
The registered nurse bulged to a size 32 after gorging on takeaway meals and donor kebabs and admits her biggest weakness was chocolate cake.
Podgy pals: Lucy decided to lose weight after seeing a photo of her and her dog Gracie and being shocked by their similarity
She said: 'I would eat at least one whole cake, all to myself, a week and I used to deep-fry all my meals, I absolutely loved chips and had them with everything. I cringe when I think back to what I used to eat.
'I used to see my mum on a weekly basis and even she would notice each visit how much weight I’d gain within a few days. I was eating the wrong foods, in the wrong portion sizes and at the wrong times, whilst doing absolutely no exercise.'
Different person: Lucy now feels confident to buy clothes that she wants
Unhealthy eating habits coupled with a lack of exercise resulted in Lucy suffering from crippling back pain.
Her health problems encouraged her to ditch the fatty food and embark on a grueling exercise regime.
Lucy still allows herself the occasional treat and said: 'I still love pizza and sometimes I treat myself to a slice but I’ve learned not to over-indulge and can now stop myself from eating the whole pizza, just having the one small piece. If I have something naughty I’ll make sure I burn it off at the gym too.'
Although pugs are designed to be chunky, Gracie needed to lose a bit of weight too.
Before, Gracie and Lucy struggled to walk short distances and even used to drive 400 yards down the road to the shop to stock up on sugary snacks.
Lucy is now a slender size 14, after quitting sweets and chocolate, and both she and Gracie are reaping the benefits of their weight loss, taking long walks and getting plenty of exercise.
Lucy is also enjoying refreshing her wardrobe, having dropped eight dress sizes, and said: 'I love being able to pop into high street shops like River Island and buy clothes I’d never have even dreamed of wearing.'
She used to hide behind jet black clothing and her long, dark hair, but now Lucy has the confidence to go for a short, bleach blonde style and wears bright, colourful dresses and heels.
Despite this she clings onto her old clothes and said: 'I’ve kept the top and jeans that I was wearing in the picture with Gracie to remind me how far I’ve come. I never want to put the weight back on and seeing them hang like tents in my wardrobe makes me determined to stay slim.'
Lucy said: 'I definitely feel much sexier now. I sometimes now go out on dates, but working at the care home and going to the gym doesn’t leave me with much time to meet men!'
The picture of Lucy and Gracie was taken at a work party and uploaded to a photo album on the work computers that all staff could access and colleagues have noticed a massive difference in Lucy’s confidence since losing the weight.
She said: 'People at work call me Tigger from Winnie the Pooh because I’m always happy and bouncing around with bundles of energy, whereas before I used to mope around like Eeyore!'
Lucy only has a stone and a half to lose before achieving her target weight of ten stone.
She said: 'Gracie is my inspiration, my one and all. I love her to bits and she has been my star supporter and I’m proud of her too!'