The “fat friend” that she was referred to 11 yeaars ago, Jodie Rigby-Mee from Royal Leamington Spa reduced an amazing 6st* and to this day has won an award for her long-term fitness maintenance. What a success!
When she was 17, during her first girls’ holiday she overheard a group of boys have described her as the “fat friend”. She returned in the hotel room crying with a broken heart.
“My godmother suggested we join Slimming World together in May 2002. I thought everyone would really judge me for being so big at such a young age. The truth is that you walk into a room full of people who all feel exactly the same way as you do and who totally understand what you’re going through.
She has tried other lose weight method before but none of them taught her about food optimising and she’s spend her money on less-nutritious foods. When she tried doing shakes or taking pills, she would just feel starved.
“I loved receiving awards for every half stone I lost and for being active, it’s amazing how motivating it can be to have something to work towards – and to get a new sticker on your book, of course! The fact that Slimming World recognised all activity, even every day jobs and tasks, made exercise seem much easier and more realistic.
“Losing weight when I did completely changed my life. It gave me so much more confidence in every respect. I was able to pursue a career as cabin crew, including moving to Dubai for five years and becoming a safety trainer teaching people how to put out fires, jump down slides and float on life-rafts, which I’d never have been able to do at my heaviest. I found it easy to Food Optimise around the world and would often board a long haul flight with lots of Tupperware filled with healthy meals and snacks.
Her wedding dress was at size 10 when she got married, she participated on bikini photo shoot for a magazine and she had a happy, healthy pregnancy with her little boy. Her family enjoyed the same meals too.
“Lots of my friends have joined Slimming World after seeing how well I’ve done, so they’re always happy to choose somewhere Slimming World-friendly to eat when we go out or we stay in and make a Food Optimising feast – and because nothing’s off the menu we can still treat ourselves to a glass of wine too!”
When she returned to England from Dubai in 2014, she decided to make a career change. She worked to be a Slimming World Consultant.  She said that it’s the most rewarding job for her. It inspires her to see people achieve their goals  because she knows just how great it feels.  Even after all these years she still attends groups though to keep her in track. “I want them to know I’m human too and show them that Food Optimising isn’t a diet to go on and go off, it’s a plan for life.”, she said.
“When I first joined Slimming World meeting members who’d reached their target weight really inspired me because it showed me that what I wanted was possible, I love doing that for my members and hope by winning this competition I can inspire even more people.”
Jodie’s top tips
Food diaries: Keeping a food diary is a great way to refocus you if you ever need it, such as after a holiday. It helps you to keep track of what you’re eating and seeing it in black and white can help you to feel back in control.
Get support: I still go to my Slimming World group as a member every week as I need the support as much as my members do, I’m still human after all!
Don’t reward yourself with food: I’ve learned food is fuel, not comfort, and I try never to reward myself with food. Instead I’ll treat myself to a bunch of flowers or some new clothes – I love shopping now I’m a size 10!

For more of Jodie Rigby-Mees story, see the video below: