From losing weight to sleeping better, these four Vitality members have totally transformed their health – and now you can follow in their footsteps
We gave four Vitality members the support they needed to transform their health over a few short weeks. They wanted to drop some weight, take on a fitness programme and change their lifestyle – for good. Each was assigned a nutritionist, a trainer and a life coach, plus each was given an Apple Watch to monitor their activity. Here, they reveal how it’s changed not only their bodies – they lost more than 5st between them – but their lives.
“This is a new way of living – one that has changed my life”
Name: Samantha Bates
Job: Team manager
“I stopped smoking three years ago, and put on weight I want to lose.”
“I lost 15lb and discovered I had a minor heart problem.”
“I became a single mum last year, which has been stressful. Cost was an issue when preparing healthy dishes, so I tended to take the cheaper ready meal option.
“When it came to fitness, I’d have loved to do parkruns with my kids but I felt like I’d embarrass them – I got out of breath walking up the stairs!
“My main problem was a lack of motivation, but I knew I needed to change my lifestyle and diet for my children’s sake. That’s why I gave up smoking – I want to be there for my kids.”
“My personal trainer has been vital for keeping me on track and giving me easy workouts that I can do at home. My new Apple Watch has been great because now I make sure I do my 10,000 steps every single day. The exercise also helped me identify a heart problem I didn’t know I had. It’s totally treatable with medication, but this literally saved my life!
“My nutrition plan is easy to follow, too – I have granola, fruit and yogurt for breakfast, tuna salad for lunch and a simple evening meal that I now prepare – like lentils or other pulses with fresh fish.”
“My kids are so surprised and excited that I have more energy again and I just want to make the most of life. My team at work has been so supportive too. For anyone wanting to make a healthy lifestyle change this year, just do it.”
“It wasn’t until I visited my family in Ireland that I realised how much weight I’d put on – because they all did!”
Name: Jamie Barnes
“To cut back on boozy nights.”
“I only drink alcohol one night a week now.”
“After moving to London from Ireland last year, I was enjoying the nightlife a bit too much. I ate or drank out four or five nights a week and went from having quite a healthy, active lifestyle to losing muscle and putting on weight.
“I played six-a-side football once a week, but exercise was inconsistent. I needed to get my lifestyle back on track before it got totally out of control.”
“My personal trainer told me that my posture and mobility needed a lot of work and my cardiovascular endurance was not what it used to be. I used to be very sporty, so he devised a plan for me that would get me feeling fit again – a combination of weight training with circuit training involving movements specific to sports.”
“I’ve lost 1st in 10 weeks. I’ve limited myself to booze just one night a week and I’m a lot more conscious about what I’m eating too. Instead of grabbing food on the go at work, I prepare my lunches and start the day with eggs and avocado, which keeps me full. My energy levels have increased and I’m feeling stronger and leaner.”
“I couldn’t have run a football pitch a few weeks ago – now I can run 10k in an hour and run 20 miles a week”
Name: Kevin Molesley
Job: Operations manager
“When the doctor said choose the cardiac or the stroke ward, I knew I had to make a change.”
“I’ve lost 2st 2lb and I run every day.”
“I used to run and go to the gym, but I totally let myself go over the years. My mother was really ill last year and the stress of that sent my blood pressure soaring. The doctor at the hospital told me that if I carried on like that I’d be choosing between a coronary or a stroke. That was my wake-up call.
“I had really unhealthy habits – I lived on takeaways and snacks and drank 20 cups of coffee at day, each with two sugars. I suffered with headaches and was constantly popping painkillers. I was visibly unhealthy and piling on the pounds. I needed to make real and lasting lifestyle changes because I didn’t want to be a victim. I wanted to live a long life and make my partner and son proud of me.”
“The whole process has educated me. I’ve started running and the harder I push myself the fitter I get – it’s addictive. I’m also eating much more healthily – I never used to eat breakfast, but my nutritionist said I needed to start the day the right way. I now have wholemeal toast and peanut butter, a sandwich for lunch, and dinner is healthy protein like fish or chicken and lots of greens – I’m allowed chips, too.
“I’ve completely weaned myself off sugar and I don’t get headaches now, so I’m off the painkillers. The next bit is cutting down on the coffee!”
“My goal was to lose 21lb and I’ve smashed that. I’m now 30lb lighter, I’m fitter than I’ve ever been and I’m totally living the healthy lifestyle. At work they call me Mr Motivator. I’ve transformed my health for good.”
“The real transformation has been in my head, not just my body”
Name: Sharon Salter
Job: Office manager
“I wanted to lose weight before I turn 60.”
“I’ve lost more than 1st and I’m sleeping better.”
“I was snoring because I was overweight, so every morning I felt like I’d had a restless night and I had no motivation or energy to exercise or eat healthily. By the end of the day, I was often so exhausted that I’d end up cooking something quick, but not necessarily very healthy. I was walking my dog regularly, but he’s a bit lazy so walks were short. I was in a vicious cycle and drastically needed some help to lose weight and increase my chances of seeing my grandchildren grow up.
“The day the Vitality email offering the chance to take part in a health transformation came through, I was going to ring the doctor to see how I could lose weight. It was a sign!”
“I see a personal trainer every week. He encourages me to do a lot of walking on the treadmill, rowing and resistance work. I made the mistake of saying I quite enjoyed the gym and so I was pushed even further!
“I’ve been setting myself realistic goals and planning my meals – instead of eating buttery toast when I get home, now I’ll have a yogurt or a banana.”
”After just six weeks, I could pull my belt in by three inches and I’ve now lost just over a stone. Friends say I look fitter and healthier and I can’t remember ever feeling so motivated or confident.
“I’m sleeping much better too. I’ll probably always wake up at night, but I definitely have more energy during the day.
“My goal is to lose another stone by my 60th birthday in February and a further stone by my son’s wedding in June – I’m going to keep going and I won’t give up.”
Feeling inspired to follow in their footsteps? Try our Week 1-4 Transformation Calories HIIT Blast workout to get started.