I was so fat I couldn’t get off the sofa and feared I was going to die… now I’m 8st lighter after ditching harmful habit | The Sun

LYING in bed last summer, Beccy Dashwood-Ball felt her life was over. 

Crying herself to sleep after polishing-off a massive bowl of pasta and a family-bag of Maltesers, washed down with a bottle-and-a-half of wine, the mum-of-two worried she was slowly killing herself.

At over 18st and 5ft 7in, she couldn’t heave herself off the sofa or put shoes on by herself.

The 46-year-old from Wollaston, Northamptonshire, recalls: “I was morbidly obese and getting bigger by the day.

“I was sure any day I’d get the news I had heart disease, diabetes or cancer.

“Yet I had an amazing husband and two sons I loved more than anything – for them as much as me, I knew I had to change.”


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It took a family break to Whitby in August 2021 for legal secretary Beccy to turn it all around.

Realising she was stuck in a rut of self-pity, she called a weight loss consultant recommended by a friend begging for help.

Less than 12 months later Beccy had completely changed her life. 

Now more than 8st lighter, the newly tee-total mum is bursting with energy, looking forward to her future for the first time in decades.

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Beccy is now a shadow of her former self – and inspired husband David to lose weight tooCredit: Matt Barbour
David, pictured before his weight lossCredit: Matt Barbour

And she’s even inspired husband David to lose 5st too.

She says: “I’ve struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. I’ve been the same since I was about nine, and kids called me the ‘Jolly Green Giant’ at primary school. 

“I hated how I looked, had zero confidence and just wanted to leave.”

Beccy met David, who also struggled with his weight, at a party in her late teens, and they hit it off quickly and moved in together.

She recalls: “I felt happy for the first time in my life, and when I was 23 we had our son Callum.

“A year later, in 2000, we got married. I slimmed down to 14st for our big day.”

Four years later Beccy fell pregnant again, and the weight crept back on.

She says: “I tried exercising and dieting but nothing worked. I’d lose a stone then put it all back on, with interest.”

At the start of 2000, tipping the scales at 16st, she joined a women’s-only gym and, with regular boxercise and circuits classes, lost a stone.

Then the pandemic struck, and with her gym classes cancelled, Beccy spiralled.

Harmful habit

“I started comfort-eating and drinking in the evenings like there was no tomorrow,” she recalls.

“I wouldn’t eat anything all day, then after I clocked off I’d eat enough pasta to feed the whole family, a massive family bag of Maltesers and worrying amounts of wine. 

“Soon I was opening a second bottle every night, and knew I was killing myself.”

Beccy adds that she felt powerless to help David, 47, and IT consultant who was suffering with back issues after a bike accident in 2015, and depression due to battling the long-term pain condition fibromyalgia.

Soon I was opening a second bottle of wine every night, and knew I was killing myself

By the summer, Beccy weighed over 18st and admits she “hated” herself.

She says: “I remember crying myself to sleep, petrified I’d die in my bed. 

“I was 45 and felt like my life was over, that I was letting David and the boys down when they needed me most. 

“David and I were just existing, with no life outside of work and wine. 

“I knew I wouldn’t be around to be a gran if Callum (23) or Max (18) had kids.

“I’d seen my mum’s life devastated by diabetes, and there was cancer and heart disease in the family, yet here I was, killing myself.”

During a minibreak in Whitby, Beccy says she struggled to function due to her weight.

“I was massive, I couldn’t put my shoes on or get off the sofa without help, and even a gentle walk left me breathless,” she says. 

I remember crying myself to sleep, petrified I’d die in my bed

“I then remembered a friend called Katie, who’d lost 2st with the Cambridge 1:2:1 Weight Plan, swapping all regular food with meal replacement packs. 

“It was extreme, but I knew I needed something to reboot my brain, and hitting rock bottom, the only way was up.”

From their holiday cottage, Beccy called Katie’s consultant, Sooze, and booked in to see her the day they got back in September.

Kicked the booze

She was shocked to discover her BMI had soared to over 40, and vowed immediately to kick her wine habit.

“I stopped drinking overnight,” she says. “My four meal replacement packs totalled just 800 calories. 

“It wasn’t easy, but with the support of David and the boys, soon I started to get my energy back.

“By Christmas I’d lost 3st and was putting on make-up and painting my nails for the first time since my 20s.

“I felt like I was getting younger and more confident by the day, and family members showered me with compliments.

“I’d turned a corner, and wanted to inspire anyone else to follow my lead.”

By spring Beccy had dropped 6st and was doing regular long hikes, practising yoga and even going canoeing with Max.

She set herself up as a weight consultant – and David was her first client.

“He also piled on weight during the pandemic, going up to over 20st,” she says.

“Switching regular food for the meal replacement packs, he saw the same amazing changes I had.”

By July Beccy had hit her target, dropping over 8st, with a BMI of 24.

Now her daily diet usually consists of sourdough toast with poached egg and avocado for breakfast, homemade soup for lunch, and salmon and steamed veg and rice for dinner.

She says: “The sense of positivity and euphoria was overwhelming. 

“David’s dropped over 5st now, so together we’ve shed a staggering 14st – the same I weighed when we got married! 

“Our marriage has never been stronger, and we’re back seeing friends we’d avoided for so long.

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To contact Beccy, click here.

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