The New Year is always a point at which people decide they need to lose weight and vow to never eat chips again and exercise everyday.
Such resolutions are impossible to maintain, but the story of two Sutton women who have turned their lives around after developing a passion for keeping fit, may help to inspire other local people to keep going.
Kelly Wyatt (35) and Maria Ceney (34) have both shed several stones after joining Oxygen Fitness Studio on Mansfield Road, Sutton, and say they feel better than they ever have done thanks to their new-found healthy attitude to exercise.
Kelly, of Mansfield Road, said she had put weight on following the birth of her third child and decided enough was enough when her weight rose to more than 17 stone.
“I wanted to lose the weight,” she said.
“With my daughter, I put about five stone on. I had a bad back from it and I didn’t want to go anywhere or go out.”
Kelly started to accompany her cousin to the bums and tums class at Oxygen in May 2012 and said instructor Jeff Gayton inspired her to keep going back.
She slowly worked her way up to the spinning classes and the results speak for themselves - she now weighs about 11 stone and has lost a total of 27 inches from her waist, hips, bust and arms and legs.
“It gives you a whole new outlook on life,” she said.
“I want to go out now and I don’t walk with my head down.”
Maria, of Cochrane Terrace in Stanton Hill, also gained weight after having children.
A mum of four, Maria topped the scales at nearly 20 stone and the weight was causing her spinal problems.
Having been to a few of Jeff’s classes in the past, she decided to go back for more, and like Kelly eventually worked up to the spinning classes.
“I didn’t even last five minutes on the bikes for the first session,” she said.
“I carried on and as the weeks went on, I kept persevering with it and it got to the point where I could do it and was enjoying it.”
Maria has dropped three dress sizes since last spring, weighs just over 15 stone, and is motivated to keep going until she reaches her target.
Both ladies agree that the secret to their success is the combination of exercise classes - which they attend every week - and healthy eating.
“You can’t do one without the other,” said Kelly.
“You have got to change the way you eat for the rest of your life - but I still have a treat day!”
Maria added: “For me, just to diet is no good - you would not see a change. I have to exercise to get my metabolism going.”
And they say that Jeff’s encouragement and the way that he keeps pushing them has been vital to their success.
Jeff said: “They are a credit to the town,
“They have decided to do something about it and not be silly about it - it’s been hard work but they have stuck to it.”