Reader Ruth Reilly shares her weightloss transformation

by Ruth Reilly

In the past I had tried several ways to lose weight but struggled. I tried Weightwatchers and Slimming World but lost heart as progress seemed to be so slow. My motivation this time was my health.

I had reached the age of 50, had high blood pressure for which I was taking four different tablets, I had stiffness in my joints particularly my left knee as a result of a previous road traffic accident and then I developed two slipped discs.

Ruth before

Ruth at size 20 had started to experience health problems

The slipped discs caused pain and weakness in my legs and I felt like an old lady as I had to pull myself up on the banister in order to get up stairs. It may seem a little extreme but I could visualise myself as ending up in a wheelchair in a few years time. That is when I decided to have a concerted effort to get the weight off.

A colleague from work recommended Herbalife to me so I searched the internet for a supplier. I found the programme easy to follow as there was no weighing or counting of calories and I was surprised by the amount of energy I experienced while dieting. I lost weight steadily and people began to comment on my weight loss.

When I started this diet, I weighed 15 ½ stone (221 lbs) and had a body fat percentage of 48%. I was wearing a size 20 in clothes at this time. I gained this weight over a period of 10-15 years after having had children and spending 4 years studying. I had no energy and would constantly fall asleep while watching TV in the evenings. It was an effort to go shopping and to do any form of exercise.

After the first week of starting the Herbalife programme, which included high protein shakes for breakfast and lunch and fibre and vitamin tabs three times a day with a healthy meal in the evening, I noticed that my energy had increased. In the first 9 months of using Herbalife, I lost 3 ½ stone and was now wearing a size 14 and weighed 12 stone by this stage which was fantastic.

My confidence had increased and I began to feel good about myself. As my weight reduced, I began to feel faint so my doctor reduced my blood pressure tablets. Herbalife had changed my life. As I felt less tired and so much healthier, I just wanted to continue this journey. Herbalife had also taught me the importance of good nutrition and I had learned about what constituted good nutrition. I went back to eating regular healthy meals and began exercising 3-4 times a week. I lost a further 1 ½ stone over the next year (10 ½ stone and wearing a size 10 to 12 at this stage).

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I maintained this weight for a further two years but during this time I tore a cartilage in my left knee while at the gym which was repaired through key-hole surgery. At this time, I was told by the orthopaedic surgeon that I would need a knee replacement within 5 years. I wished to avoid this for as long as possible so decided to lose some more weight and also set myself a target of learning to swim so that I could continue to exercise in a way that would not cause further stress on the joint.

In order to lose this weight, I started to use Herbalife again and have lost a further 1 ¼ stone. I now weigh 9 ¼ stone and have a body fat of 26-27%, a reduction of over 20%. I now swim 1000m 3-4 times a week and spend an hour a week in the gym. Prior to my weight loss any form of exercise was a real effort and I hated doing it. I see regular exercise as fun and part of my new healthy and active lifestyle.


Ruth, as she looks today – brimming with healthy vitality

I am now 55 years of age and feel great. My metabolic age according to the Tanita scales is age 40. I actually feel 20 years younger than I did five years ago when I was lugging around the equivalent of 4 heavy suitcases (a total of 84 lbs of weight). I now wish to maintain my present weight but lose another 3-4% body fat and increase muscle mass through a high protein diet and regular exercise.