Helping people to change their lives for the better is the most rewarding part of being a weight loss consultant.
Tracy Hickman, 45, has been a Slimming World consultant in Ilkeston for almost three years and first began leading a group in Awsworth.
She took on the role after becoming inspired when she lost four stone as a Slimming World member. She had tried a range of diets before - such as Cambridge and Slimfast - to no avail.
She said: “I loved how I could still enjoy my life. It was something I was always talking about so I thought I would give it a go myself” (becoming a consultant).
“My confidence in my job as an administrator has improved.
“A couple recently sent me a video saying ‘thanks for changing my life’ and that I had inspired them. It’s very rewarding.
“Even if it just helps one person it’s worth it.
“One woman couldn’t walk before she lost weight and would have been housebound. It turned her life around.”
Tracy is a married mum-of-two, who also has a grandchild and another on the way. She grew up around Nuthall and went to school in Kimberley.
She is passionate about helping people to reach their goals when it comes to losing weight and gaining confidence. She said: “It’s about healthy eating and real food that you can eat. Everything in moderation. I just wish doctors would come on board more.”
The group that she runs recently managed to use their will power to stay away from tempting treats over the festive period. Instead they donated all of their chocolate and biscuits to the food bank, which is run by the Arena Church.
Tracy said: “The first year I took on the role I knew about the food bank at the arena. “At Christmas everyone has too much of everything so we decided to donate it. Some people bought extra items and tins
. We filled a dustbin with all the food we donated.
“Even if it only helps a couple of families then it’s worth it.
“During Christmas 2013 and 2014 my members blew me away with their commitment over the festive period and donated loads of food for the local food bank. It has almost become a tradition now.
“They know Christmas is a trying time for healthy eating but are so determined that a couple of days are not going to blow all their hard work through the year, they know damage limitation is the key. And they know the perfect way to protect themselves is to help others, so they did just that.
“The local food bank is just perfect and it used to be held at The Arena, now in the community building in Belfield st, Ilkeston.
“It’s a great way to help people less fortunate than ourselves whilst at the same time protecting our weight losses.
“They also agreed that most members probably had one or more tins of food in the back of their kitchen cupboards that will never get eaten as they purchased it before they joined Slimming World and started food optimising.
“As it had been so successful the last two years we just had to do it again so a couple of weeks before Christmas and right up to the end of January members have been coming each week, weighing in and bringing food items, determined not to blow their weight loss.
“Their commitment and determination is just fantastic yet again.
“As a result of their hard work the group’s weight loss so far for January is 22 stone which is just awesome and there is still one more week to go.”
There are currently 80 members in Tracy’s Slimming World groups which is held on a Monday evening at The Arena Church on Rutland Street at in Ilkeston at 5.30pm and 7.30pm.