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Hundred up in councillors' weight loss challenge

Councillors who have joined a city wide weight loss challenge have shed more than 100 pounds between them.

Paul Sweet, Stephen Simkins and Daniel Warren took up the challenge in support of a call to action by Wolverhampton's Public Health team, encouraging the city to come together to tackle obesity.

The trio agreed they had issues with their weight and vowed to do something about it - and since embarking on individual weight loss programmes in September they have collectively shed 103 pounds, or more than 7 stone.

Councillor Sweet's weight has fallen from 22st 7.5lbs to 18st 3.5lbs, Councillor Simkins is down from 23st 3lbs to 22st 1lbs and Councillor Warren has slimmed from 16st 8lbs to 14st 9lbs.

Councillor Sweet said: "I've lost over 4 stone since staring the challenge and I can't believe the difference it is making to my everyday life.

"I have boundless energy and am always looking at ways to exercise harder and longer; it's very infectious and as your fitness improves, so your desire to push harder grows.

"I've found the free advice from the Healthy Lifestyles and Public Health teams really helpful. They suggested I mix up my meals and alternate my exercises more because your body quickly gets used to you doing what would once have been a struggle."

Councillor Simkins said: "I've now lost over a stone, and while I must admit that it has been hard to get back into the swing of things after Christmas, I'm getting there.

"I've begun doing more swimming rather than weights, and I've got to start combining that with more walking and jogging to see better results. I'm also adjusting my food habits like eating more fish and vegetables.

"I'm still really enjoying the challenge and it's all about making sure I continue to put the commitment in."

Councillor Warren added: "I've lost around 2 stone since the start of the programme. The most challenging part so far had been the recent Christmas period as it is hard to diet during all the festivities, but I'm really enjoying the extra walking I'm doing, and the healthier foods that I have been eating."

The councillors' challenge began with a health check with experts from the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust's Healthy Lifestyles Service, who also discussed lifestyle issues and diet. They then signed up to their local WV Active leisure centres, where they enjoy regular workouts supported by "buddies" - including Wolverhampton's Director of Public Health Ros Jervis - who exercises with them. They are also taking part in a range of other activities, including walking, jogging and cycling.

Councillor Sandra Samuels, Wolverhampton City Council's Cabinet Member for Health and Wellbeing, said: "I'd like to congratulate Paul, Stephen and Daniel on their tremendous efforts, and for successfully coming through the Christmas period which of course is traditionally problematic for people looking to lose weight.

"They've lost over 100lbs, that's more than seven stone, between them. I hope other people with weight issues are inspired by their efforts and see that, with a little dedication can make a difference to their health and wellbeing."

For more information about the free help available to people with weight issues from the Healthy Lifestyles Service, please call 0800 073 4242 or 01902 444246, email rwh-tr.healthy-lifestyles@nhs.net or visit the Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust website, Healthy Lifestyles Service.

People can follow the councillors' weight loss journey via Twitter - slimlinesweetslim67rocket and dietingdan.

And anyone who is on a health kick is urged to support the Million Miles for Wolverhampton and Shed a Million Pounds for Wolverhampton challenges - which ask the city to collectively complete a million miles or shed a million pounds while getting in shape - by recording their efforts at Tackling obesity in Wolverhampton.

  • released: Wednesday 18 February, 2015