Sheffield pals enjoying a lighter life

Sheila Beaver, 57, of Unstone, and Julie Atkin, 39, of Dronfield, after losing weight.
Sheila Beaver, 57, of Unstone, and Julie Atkin, 39, of Dronfield, after losing weight.
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A pair of best friends can’t ‘weight’ to show off their new figures after shedding more than 11st together.

Pals Julie Atkin, aged 39, and Sheila Beaver, 57, are each enjoying a new lease of life after both dropped seven dress sizes in just one year.

After struggling with health problems, the two decided enough was enough and began attending Weight Watchers classes in Dronfield.

Julie, from Dronfield, was a size 26 and weighed 19st 2lbs, while Sheila, of Unstone, was 16st 2lbs and was at high risk of having a stroke.

Leaning on one another for support over the past 12 months, they have dropped a total of 11st 5lbs between them.

Mum-of-two Julie, who is now 6st 5lbs lighter, said: “This was the best thing ever for me, my life has totally changed. I don’t feel embarrassed taking my kids out any more and I certainly have plenty of energy to play with them now.”

Dronfield Weight Watchers leader Wendy Osbourne believes the two women are living proof that friendship and support are the recipe to success in losing weight.

Both Sheila and Julie are now helping to inspire a new wave of women by helping out at classes.

Wendy said: “They are both different people to the women I met a year ago. Their doctors are delighted.

“It’s definitely a good idea to join up to a weight-loss class with somebody else. It keeps them going. Those two were always at the other end of the phone for each other and came to class together.

“To see them so confident is fantastic.”