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8 January 2011, 06:00
An Ipswich woman who has lost over 11 stone has been named Slimmer of the Year in a national competition.
Joanne Dreher, who lost 11 stone 6 pounds over 22 months, has been recognized at the Rosemary Conley Diet and Fitness Magazine Slimmer of the Year 2011 awards.
The Super-Fit Female Slimmer of the Year 2011 was given to Joanne after two years hard work which saw her lose half her body weight and shrink from a size 30 to a 12.
The 35-year-old from Ipswich had dangerously high cholesterol before she gave up junk food and lounging in front of the television. Now she teaches six exercise classes each week and her life expectancy has increased by 10 years.
Joanne told Heart the birth of her second son Daniel inspired her to lose the weight:
"It was about two weeks after I had Daniel, and I got on my bathroom scales and they wouldn't weigh me. I also had to have my gall bladder removed shortly after having him because of overeating.
I was then starting to think, I need to change my life. I've had two beautiful children, I want to see them grow up."
Joanne is now a qualified fitness instructor and has just started teaching her own exercise classes:
"I still laugh inside now every time I say to someone I'm a diet and fitness instructor.
It's like I've got a new lease of life. It's fantastic."
You can hear more from Joanne about her weight loss below.