A Westmeath woman who lost more than half her bodyweight has told how
Rosie Rooney, 59, started piling on the pounds after the crche where she worked was the target of an arson attack.
I managed a community creche for 20 years and vandals came in and set fire to it, she told RSVP Live. The health board wouldnt allow us to reopen it as a creche, so I got awful down in myself.
The weight was just piling on, I didnt have any care for myself.
Rosies daughter-in-law suggested joining Slimming World, and she went along - but admits she was heartbroken the first time she stepped on the scales.
I came home with my book and I couldnt understand how you could lose weight by eating so much food, she said. It took me a day or two to get it into my head, but after that I was fine.
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Instead of indulging in Chinese takeaways, sweets and crisps, she started cooking her own meals at home and avoiding unhealthy treats.
Over the course of two years she lost a whopping 9st 4lbs, going from a size 22-24 to a slim size 8.
The Mullingar native said she stays at her target weight by reminding herself of how far shes come.
I feel so marvellous about my weight loss, but sometimes I forget about it and its only when I sit down and pick up a bar of chocolate that I say to myself - What are you doing? All the hard work youve put in! Put it away!
You have to keep yourself on the right track - I chat to myself a lot, she laughs.
Rosie has also picked up a few tricks along the way.
I had a wedding on New Years Day and I just had my vegetables and one slice of roast beef with a glass of water, that was it, she said.
I always make sure to have something to eat before I go to an event like that so I wont be hungry.
And then if my children ask me to dinner, I buy the dinners in Iceland so I just take one out and bring it to their house. They dont mind me using the microwave!
The busy grandmother she really looks forward to her weekly Slimming World meetings - and theres no excuses not to go.
I have 14 or 15 grandchildren and I mind them all the time, because my daughters are working, she said.
If I have them on a Wednesday morning our consultant Cathriona tells me to bring them with me and she has the table all set up with colouring books and games.
Shes one in a million! Honestly, you could have had an awful bad week and no matter what you have to say, she is there to listen.
Rosies health has massively improved since she lost the weight, and she no longer suffers from diabetes or asthma.
She went on: When I started the diet first I had to attend my doctor, I was going down to her every month for my check up. She kept saying it was all turning out right. I had asthma and I dont have it any more.
I went down one time for my six week check up. She said I dont want to see you anymore, your diet is perfect!
She added: I used to not be able to fit in the shower, Id be pulling the door off to try to get in.
I wasnt able to cut my own toenails, I had to get my daughter to do it.
"I couldnt climb stairs or walk into town.
Now Im flying around like a two year old! Its like a different life.
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