An obese mother who was too ashamed to look in the mirror has revealed how she shed nearly half her body weight in a bid to fit back into her wedding dress in time for her tenth anniversary.
Rachelle Hosick, from Vandalia, Illinois, was 19 when she tied the knot in April 2007, going on a rigorous crash diet at the time in order to squeeze herself into the size 0 gown she had bought.
But after slimming down for that happy day, Rachelle’s weight continued to fluctuate over the years and at her heaviest she tipped the scales at 292lbs. So, last year the mother-of-two, now 30, made the decision to turn her life around, losing an astonishing 155lbs in less than a year.
After transforming her diet and her lifestyle, Rachelle was celebrate her anniversary by wearing her wedding dress for the first time since the big day, easily slipping her 141lbs frame into the stunning gown.
‘Losing weight has completely changed my life,’ Rachelle said of her transformation.’ I used to be so ashamed of the way I looked and honestly, I felt like I was an embarrassment to my family.
‘Now it is the complete opposite. My confidence is through the roof. I used to avoid going to baseball games or concerts because I couldn’t fit in the seats. Now I fit with room to spare.
‘I feel so much better. I love feeling strong. I love being confident. I love being able to go out in public and not feel like people are staring at me because of my size. I even own a full-length mirror now.’
Rachelle, a teacher’s assistant, described how she was overweight as a child and struggled with the issue into adulthood.
‘In Illinois, you’re required to have a check-up upon entering ninth grade. At that check-up, my weight was such an issue, my doctor wanted me to see a nutritionist,’ she explained.
So Rachelle began working with the nutritionist in order to get herself back to a healthy weight, taking up physical exercise as a means of trimming down and getting fit.
‘I got involved in our high school tennis team and eventually was at a healthy weight,’ she added.
‘I met my [now] husband and we decided to get married. When my wedding dress came in, it was too small. So, I went on a crash diet to make it fit.
‘Then once our wedding day was over, it was like a free-for-all eating-wise; I didn’t have to worry about starving myself to fit into a dress anymore, so I could eat whatever I wanted.’
In February 2016, after slumping into her over-sized recliner with a plate full of pizza rolls, it suddenly dawned on her that she had to make a change and she started by throwing away all the junk food she had at home.
‘I was sick of missing out on doing things my husband and kids due to my size and health,’ she said. ‘I was sick of feeling bad all the time.
‘I was sick of all the aches and pains I had. I was just plain sick and was ready to finally make a change and be a good example for my kids.’
Rachelle also joined the Beachbody community, an online network of fitness coaches who help people stay motivated in improving their lifestyle and health.
She said: ‘The hardest part was just deciding to finally start. I didn’t have to spend hours in a gym or feel deprived. I get to achieve amazing results just by working out in my son’s tiny little room.’
Now Rachelle helps others as a coach and said her family and friends have been astonished by her transformation.
‘I’ve had multiple people tell me that they didn’t recognise me. They have even made the comment that they thought my husband got himself a different wife.
‘In a sense, he did. He got a better version of the old me.’