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Ashleigh Caldwell used to spend anywhere between an extra £1,000 to £3,000 whenever she was travelling by plane and was so big she couldn’t fit on Disney rides

A woman who was 30st dropped more than half her body weight after being unable to fit in plane seats.

Ashleigh Caldwell dropped from 30st 7lb to 13st 2lb after her size meant she had to upgrade her economy seats to business class, which have more room.

The switch used to cost thousands.

Ashleigh began her weight-loss journey in May 2019. She had been gaining weight since 2016, when her mother passed away.

The businesswoman, 34, said: “There were a few events in my life that made me decide I needed to turn my life around.

“Whenever I flew anywhere I would always pay extra for business class tickets because there was more room in the seats and I would be more comfortable.

“It could cost me anywhere between an extra £1,000 to £3,000 whenever I was getting on a plane.

“Another turning point for me was the fact that I was so big I couldn’t fit on many of the rides at Disney when I went with my nephews.

“I was also a bridesmaid at my sister’s wedding. She had to order a dress to be made for me because of my size.

“With all of these things adding up and making me feel even worse about myself, I just knew I had to do something so I could just live life to the fullest again.

“I was fed up of having to overthink every scenario in everyday life.

“I would have to Google what the seats were like in restaurants and cafes.”

When Ashleigh decided to slim, she was brutal with herself. She said: “I decided that I was going to go extreme.

“I cut my calories down to around 1,200 and I cut out all carbs and alcohol.”

The initial weight loss was rapid, which made her hungry for more results.

Within six months she had already lost an impressive 7st.

Ashleigh, who used to live in the US and now lives on the Isle of Man, said American fast-food choice was huge.

She added: “I’d eat some form of fast food every single day. McDonald’s, Burger King, Wendy’s, Chick-fil-A…

“I would go to them all.”

“After my mum passed away I was in a really bad frame of mind.

“At my heaviest, I was 30st 7lb and it held me back from so much in life.”

Since dropping from a size 34 to a 14, Ashleigh says she has more confidence.

She explained: “I am going on a hen do soon and there will be a hot tub.

“That would have caused me so much stress before and now… I’m actually excited.”

Before diet


LUNCH: Cheese and ham toastie, chips, large fizzy drink and a donut

DINNER: McDonald’s cheese burger with large fries, large fizzy drink and a cookie or cake.

SNACKS: Cookies, crisps, smoothies, milkshakes, chocolate and sweets.

After diet

BREAKFAST: Coffee and two boiled eggs

LUNCH: Nature Valley salted caramel bar

DINNER: Prawns with vegetables or salad

SNACKS: Low calorie cereal bars, Wotsits and low calorie popcorn.