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'I encouraged my husband to lose weight too after we both piled weight on'

Maureen Cregan (35), a hospital clinical administrator, is married to Eamon (36) an acute support nurse/dialysis assistant. They live in Londonderry and have three children Elijah (10), Jacob (9) and Amelia (5). She says:

Ihave struggled with my weight since I was a teenager It was around this time when I met Eamon and we started going out. Our dates usually involved going out for meals or takeaways and the weight started to pile on both of us.

I was never skinny and after I had my children I put on a lot of weight.

Last Christmas I felt the time was right and returned to Weight Watchers again after a few years absence.

I went to a class in January and the following week I encouraged Eamon to come with me too, and we decided to do it together.

He was embarrassed at the start as he was 20 stones 3 pounds and he thought he would be going to a class full of women - but after a few weeks it didn't matter as we both loved it.

We both work full-time and with young children it is difficult to get out to an exercise class so we decided to lose weight through healthy eating.

I was 13 stones 4 pounds when I started and a size 16 to 18. Eamon was a size 40 waist.

After joining Weight Watchers we started making healthy choices about our eating.

We cut out all junk food and started eating proper portion sizes.

It was easy to stick to as I just made a healthy meal for all the family.

In the past we would have had a lot of chips, crisps and takeaways. Now we have a proper breakfast of toast and fruit.

At lunchtime I eat vegetable soup or wheaten bread.

Dinner is meat such as chicken with no sauces or the sauce on the side so you are just dipping and it isn't cooked in the sauce.

And we eat lots of fruit and vegetables now.

If we go out for a meal (which is very rare), I just look up the menu in advance and plan a healthy choice.

Weight Watchers is an easy plan to follow and it is all just about adapting your choices.

The meetings are very important for motivation and help you to keep the weight off.

We have made lots of good friends in the class and we keep going back.

Now I'm size 8/10 and it is fantastic - I'm 9 stones, 4 pounds. And this Christmas I will be able to wear whatever I want.

I am just back from a shopping trip to Liverpool with my mum and it was great going into all the shops there knowing all the lovely clothes would fit.

And Eamon has lost 5 stones 4 pounds so he is like a new man too."

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