Published: 00:01, 10 December 2018
A woman who feared she might die weighing 27 stone has lost more than 11 stone and completed a 22-mile swimming challenge.
In 2012, Margaret Bowerman began suffering kidney failure and knew she needed to get healthy or die.
The retired primary school teacher said: “I began having weight issues in my teens and was carrying more weight than I should.
“Being a teenager was not always easy, children can be cruel. I was shy, so food became my friend.”
She added: “In my mid-30s, I had a busy life. Resorting to chocolate and ready meals for quickness, my weight crept up and up because I wasn’t concentrating on it.
“I became ill in 2012 with a life-threatening infection that led to acute kidney failure because of the obesity and the Type 2 diabetes I had developed as a result of my weight.”
After the warning, Margaret lost a few stone before she began gaining the pounds again.
“At my heaviest, I weighed 27 stone and I feared I might die,” the 67-year-old said.
“Looking at the numbers, I could see the risks. I’d already developed Type 2 diabetes and knew I was at risk of something dramatic happening to my health. I hadn’t given my second chance at life a good enough go.”
Margaret joined a WeightWatchers workshop in Sittingbourne in 2015 with wellness coach Tracy Nixon.
Over the past three years, she’s lost more than 11 stone and come off all diabetic medication.
“I’m feeling fantastic,” she said.
In April last year, Margaret started swimming and registered for the Aspire Channel Swim.
She started the challenge at Sheerness swimming pool on September 10 and completed the course in eight weeks. She also raised £410 for charity Aspire, which supports people paralysed by a spinal injury.
She said: “I knew it would be a challenge, but it was something I wanted to try and achieve despite my lack of mobility.
“It has been a sufficiently long time turning my life around, but when you accomplish it, it can make a dramatic difference to your life. In my case it saved it.”