By Alyce Collins
THIS STUNNING woman shed nearly SIX-STONE after her teacher nicknamed her MISS PIGGY and she had to sit on her own during a rollercoaster ride to balance the weight.
Slimming World consultant, Natalie Hogg (36) from London, UK, had grown accustomed to her curvy figure as she grew up as she felt the only thing she could depend on while getting bullied for her weight was food.
During her time at school, Natalie was nicknamed ‘Miss Piggy’ by a teacher, which soon caught on among her fellow pupils. Natalie tried to cope with the taunting by comfort eating in secret, however the guilt from eating would in turn make her feel even worse.
A trip to Southend Theme Park with her friends was intended to be a pleasant day until the ride host moved Natalie’s friends further down the carriage, which she soon realised was to balance out the weight on the ride.
Throughout her teenage years and her twenties, Natalie felt ashamed of her appearance and she would make comments about herself, purely because she thought people around her would be thinking them anyway.
After being inspired to try out Slimming World by a friend who was already on it, Natalie has gone from 16st 6lbs, wearing a UK size 20, to 10st 13lbs and a UK size 8-10.
“I have always struggled with my weight and I was bullied for my whole time at school,” said Natalie.
“I had always been a different shape to my friends which made me stand out from them because I was short and curvy.
“One of my junior school teachers used to call me Miss Piggy because of my weight and my last name. This was when I really started to get bullied because some of the other kids then joined in as well.
“This then led me to comfort eat. I had no idea that was what I was doing but I would secretly eat biscuits and crisps.
“My parents could see what I was doing and they tried to help by changing the foods I ate, but this made me feel different to my friends, like I was being punished.
“When I was 13 I was referred to the GP who carried out the pinch test, took my height and weight. At that time, I was part of a swimming club, so I swam five times a week and competed at the weekends, so my health was good.
“It was then that they told me I was obese. I’d never even heard of it and I felt like I’d been told I had an incurable disease. This led me to more comfort eating followed by not eating from the guilt of the secret eating.
“I remember going to Southend Theme Park and I sat on one of the rides, my friends went to get in the same cart with me, but the attendant stopped them and moved them further round the other side. They didn’t say anything, but it was, so it would balance the weight on the ride.
“I was mortified. I just wanted to get off and go home, but I had to stay there and pretend I was still having fun.
“I would try all sorts of fad diets but when there was one day I couldn’t follow them I felt stupid and like a complete failure. So, I’d just comfort eat again.
“I hated myself and my body and I felt like a failure for not being able to stick to diets. I lived my teens and twenties living a half-life.
“I wanted to do all the things my friends were doing, but I couldn’t because of how low my confidence was, or how much weight was holding me back.
“One day I was sat with a pile of clothes around me, trying to find something to wear for a friend’s birthday night out, and I looked at myself and said, ‘this is who I am. I either stop crying and just try to get on with life, or I lock myself away and let life pass me by’.
“I knew that neither option was what I wanted but I didn’t think I had much choice. Then the following week, I went into work and was in the changing room and my friend told me about how she’d lost nearly a stone in three-weeks.
“I could see the difference in the way she looked, and I thought to myself, she must be doing some expensive tablet or shake plan. But then she showed me the delicious food she was allowed to eat through Slimming World and I was sold.”
Natalie joined Slimming World in 2011 and has relished the opportunities she has been allowed ever since.
Natalie used to eat whatever she liked, including a lot of snacks, without thinking of the consequences they had on her weight. One of Natalie’s largest apprehensions about losing weight through a plan was the strict regime she would have to stick to, but she was pleasantly surprised to learn that she could still have all of her favourite foods.
“I have been given a new life. I had no idea how low my confidence was,” said Natalie.
“I was always the funny one, making cutting jokes about myself, but only because I wanted to say what I thought people were thinking before they said it.
“I am proud of what I’ve done and the life I live now. I am by no means perfect, but who wants to be perfect anyway?
“I don’t have time to calorie count or weigh everything. I know with Slimming World there’s a whole list of food I can enjoy without faffing around. I still enjoy the odd glass of wine or slice of cake, but I’m so much more aware of the balance.
“I love cooking even more, especially for other people because they’re often so shocked that what I’ve made is Slimming World as it’s so tasty.
“I walk my dog every day – I walk as much as I can rather than driving. I also try and get to the gym to help tone. Getting activity in every day makes it so much easier, even just walking instead of driving.
“All this helps me stay focused on what I’m doing, even though Slimming World has become a way of life and I do most of it without even thinking now. I’m still learning about myself as we are very complex so it’s about being kind to ourselves as well as others.
“If you’re ready and you really want to make a change, then there’s nothing stopping you from living the life you deserve. Life can get in the way but it’s about learning from it and who you are so you can keep growing.”
Follow Natalie’s Slimming World journey @slimmingworld_nat_life.