FOR the first time this Christmas, Sarah Warriner has had the confidence to pose for family pictures – after shedding more than six stone in six months.

Sarah, 26, spent years avoiding the camera, saying she felt “ugly” and “miserable” when she saw pictures of herself. At her heaviest, Sarah, of Cornlands Road, Acomb, York, weighed 19 stone 12-and-a-half pounds and was a size 26.

But an incredible weight-loss journey has seen her slim down to 13 stone 12 pounds, meaning she has been able to wear size 16 trousers and size 12 top with pride this festive season. Her new slimlinefigure means for the first time she will be happy to have a picture with her five-year-old daughter, Beth, instead of shying away from a family picture.

A friend dragged her along to a slimming group meeting on May 29 – and Sarah hasn’t looked back since.

“It was something I had been putting off,” Sarah admitted. “But since that first meeting I haven’t missed a session and I have stuck to the diet religiously. I follow the plan 100 per cent.”

When she got married at 17, she weighed 13 stone, but her weight slowly crept up when her husband Robbie’s army career saw her move from York to Cambridge.

It was when it took her two years to conceive Beth that Sarah said she knew her weight was an issue. When she moved back to York after Beth was born she said she felt like a “totally different person” than her friends remembered her and said she used to look in the mirror and hate what she saw.

“I felt so ugly,” she said.

Sarah managed to lose the pounds through Slimming World by swapping her love of takeaways and pre-packaged food for healthier home-cooked versions. She also began exercising – and now runs for half-an-hour a day on the treadmill, as well as taking regular walks and boxing classes.

“I now feel half the woman I used to be,” Sarah said. “Before I wouldn’t let anyone take my picture. Now I cannot wait for the pictures this Christmas.”

Sarah's Vital statistics

Weight: 19 stone 12½ pounds
Dress size: Size 26 trousers and size 24 top
Ate/drank: Takeaways, chips, lager

: 13 stone and 12 pounds
Dress size: Size 16 trousers and size 12 top
Eats/drinks: Home-cooked food. Swapped the lager for Bacardi and diet coke.