A mum has shared how she lost 57kg after being told by a sales assistant at a wedding dress shop to go to the plus-size section.
Ali Stutz Buch, 29, says a sales assistant told her "this won't fit you" before having the dress snatched out her hand.
After leaving the shop feeling distraught, the hairstylist from Milwaukee, Wisconsin, US, became determined to lose weight and 38kg before her big day.
Ali continued to lose more weight – totalling 57kg and she was so proud of her achievement that she splashed out $20,000 on cosmetic surgery for her new figure.
The mum-of-two said: “I went dress shopping and I was already self-conscious but was looking forward to a nice day. When we arrived at the shop, my eyes fell on one dress and I excitedly picked it up.
“The sales assistant took it off me and abruptly said this won’t fit you, you need the plus size dresses in that corner.
“Of course I was aware of my size but when a stranger says something so blunt to your face it hurts. It really shattered my confidence and her comments stuck with me. It made me so sad.
“I realised I needed to change. I have tough skin but this dress was for my special day and I didn’t want people to be looking at me and only noticing my weight.”
At her heaviest, Ali weighed 120kg when she was 23 and a single mum of one.
Ali admits to always being overweight, even as a child and when she had her daughter, now six, she struggled more with her weight.
She met her now-husband, Jacob, in 2015 when she was at her heaviest.
But after getting engaged a year later, Ali decided enough was enough.
She said, “I saw a Keto diet plan on Instagram but didn’t really know what it was. I saw how good everyone looked and something just clicked and I knew was ready to start. I had tried and failed so many diet plans in the past.”
Ali cut out sugar and carbs and began tracking everything she ate.
She said: “I was a binge eater. People judged me for eating 6,000 calories a day but they don’t realise how quickly calories add up unless you write down every snack. If you don’t track what you are putting in your body it is so easy to over do it.”
"For me my brain doesn’t let me have just a small bite of something. I would eat the whole cake, then feel guilty and then eat another. It was a cycle. I needed a plan where I cut it out completely.”
Ali lost 38kg ahead of her wedding and her seamstress was unable to make the drastic changes to her dress.
“I had ordered a size 22 dress but now I was a size 10.
“I tried to have it altered, taking a whopping 16 inches out of the waist but it just didn't work
“So I went back to a shop and choose something I didn’t dare to look at before. My dress was tightly fitted and I felt amazing. It was the most beautiful dress.
“I had so much confidence on the day. For the first time I wanted people to look at me. Looking back at pictures I am so proud of how far I've come and I'm so happy I bought that new wedding dress to show off my new body.”
Ali’s transformation didn’t stop once she was married in 2017 and she is now 22kg smaller than her wedding day.
She was halved her former weight and now weighs 60kg and has maintained her weight during lockdown.
Ali added, “I am where I want to be. My mental transformation is what I am most proud of, how I feel about myself now is what counts. It’s mind-blowing to me what I have achieved.
“I hated having photos taken, I was so critical of my body.
“My life changed when I had my kids and I was desperate to be healthy for them. I was very close to my gran who was extremely overweight and she died aged 68 because of complications with her weight.
“She never saw me graduate or got to meet my kids because she died due to something avoidable and I could see I was on that same path. I want to see my kids grow up, I love to play with them on the beach and race around after them.”
After maintaining her weight for a year, Ali booked for tummy tuck surgery and breast augmentation.
She added: “I had so much excess skin that the surgery was necessary but I decided on a boob job because I decided I deserved a confidence boost.”
Ali's diet before:
Breakfast: Chocolate waffles/muffins.
Lunch: Pizza and breadsticks
Dinner: Pizza, hamburger and fries.
Snacks: Chips, sweets
Ali's current diet:
Breakfast: No breakfast. Intermittent fasting until lunch and drink black coffee.
Lunch: Chicken and salad
Dinner: Bun-less hamburger and Brussel sprouts.
Snacks: Capsicums, nuts, eggs, berries.
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