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Bullied Birmingham teenager lost over 2 stone in 18 months

A university student who was tormented by bullies over the way she looks has revealed she feels ‘happier and healthier’ after losing weight. 

Olivia Pearsall, 18, from Birmingham, said she had always been overweight growing up and was constantly targeted by classmates who teased her about her figure. 

The teenager, who now lives in Brisbane, Australia, said she ‘wasn’t happy with herself’ and ‘hated’ looking at her reflection. The turning point came when she started following fitness bloggers on Instagram and decided to start exercising.

The student today

Personal journey: Student Olivia Pearsall, left before, said she is proud of her weight loss

Strong: Olivia, pictured today, lifts weights six days a week but does minimal cardio

Strong: Olivia, pictured today, lifts weights six days a week but does minimal cardio

She said: ‘While most individuals would scroll through Instagram and see fitness models and beautiful women and put themselves down thinking, “why can’t I look like that”, I did the opposite. I saw pictures of women with amazing bodies and thought, “wow, I am going to turn myself into that”.’

Olivia has lost 2.5st over the last 18 months and now weighs 9st 1lb. 

Happier and healthier: Olivia, pictured, said she feels better about her figure now

She said: ‘For as long as I can remember I have always been overweight, my whole family was. I think in my own opinion it was down to the fact that not only my family, but most of the western culture lives a fairly sedentary lifestyle in which fast food and temptation is always around the corner.

‘My house was always stocked up with chocolate and sweets and I was taking in way more calories than I needed.’

Olivia recalled how she was ‘constantly bullied’ at school and ‘boys wouldn’t even look at her’, adding: ‘I wasn’t happy with myself and I hated the way I looked.

‘I used to look in the mirror and just felt disappointed in myself that I could eat myself into that way.’

When Olivia was 15 she vowed to lose weight and her parents supported her by paying for a membership to a local gym. While she initially found it challenging to work out, Olivia soon learned how to work out effectively.   

She said: ‘It wasn’t long before I had dropped about 5kgs from just doing cardio and I was starting to feel a lot more confident when a personal trainer at the gym approached me and asked if I’ve ever considered lifting weight. 

Targeted: Cruel classmates teased Olivia about her size while she was growing up

Olivia as a child

Targeted: Cruel classmates teased Olivia about her size while she was growing up

Gym-honed: The teen started working out three years ago and has seen a change in her figure

Gym-honed: The teen started working out three years ago and has seen a change in her figure

‘That was the scariest thing ever, to think of going into the weight area with all the big males as a tiny little 5’4’ 16-year-old girl. 

Striking a pose: Olivia in front of the camera

Striking a pose: Olivia in front of the camera

‘He persevered and offered me free personal training to help me start lifting weight which was the best decision I ever made. 

‘Since lifting weights, I do minimal cardio but lift for roughly an hour every day and that is the secret to my weight loss.’

Olivia said the most difficult thing about her transformation was changing the way she thought about food, especially as her family continued with their unhealthy habits. 

‘I was never really strict with my diet while I was losing weight, but I was conscious of what I was eating,’ she said. ‘I would eat when I’m hungry and stop when I’m full.

‘I was mostly eating just healthy, whole nutritious foods, but every now and then a girl gets a chocolate craving and that’s completely okay to eat a small about of unhealthy food, everything in moderation.’

For Olivia, losing weight has made her a more confident person and she no longer dreads going to the beach or fears what other people might think of her.

She added: ‘100 per cent losing weight has changed my life. I am confident in myself now which has lead me into a whole new person. I am just overall just a happier and healthier person who can now maintain a balanced lifestyle with amazing friends and family.’



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk