As I pushed a trolley around the supermarket, while doing the weekly shop, I suddenly caught a whiff of freshly baked bread.
‘Mmmm,’ I thought to myself, as my stomach began to rumble.
I went to head towards the bakery section, before stopping in my tracks when the voice in my head cried out: ‘No Sarah, don’t do it.’
Instead of picking up a crusty loaf, I opened my handbag and glanced at the photo inside.
It was a picture of my husband, Andrew Reed, 31, and I which had been taken at a family wedding.
But instead of gazing at it adoringly like I should, one look left me feeling repulsed.
A natural shot, it captured us from side on and without either of us realising.
My bulging belly, rolly polly arms and double chin were on full display, while Andrew’s chubby tummy drooped over his trousers.
A quick peek at the picture was enough to make me avoid the tempting bread, cakes and pastries and head in the direction of the fruit and veg aisle instead.
Tipping the scales at 23st 7lbs, I was enormous and Andrew wasn’t much slimmer, weighing 20st.
After struggling to squeeze into a size 28 for the wedding, I had resorted to ordering a size 30 polka dot dress online.
Despite my ballooning figure, I had felt pretty confident in my new outfit on the day.
Only when Andrew and I flicked through the professional photos afterwards we were both horrified at the sight of ourselves.
‘Oh my…’ I gasped, when I first laid eyes on the picture. ‘Do I really look like that?’
It was then that I realised the enormity of my weight problem.
‘Enough is enough,’ I sighed, in January 2014. ‘I’m going to lose weight.’
‘I’ll join you,’ Andrew vowed, deciding to give it a go too.
Every January I would make and quickly break my New Year’s resolution to slim down.
I would manage to shed a few pounds over a couple of weeks and then lose all willpower and gain back more than I had lost.
Slimming World, Weight Watchers and Atkins, I had tried every diet in the book. None of them seemed to work for me.
This time I was determined to get slim, fit and healthy – and all by myself.
I didn’t want to sign up to expensive slimming groups or costly diet programmes, only to waste my money and cop out later on.
I knew I would need to completely overhaul my lifestyle and be able to keep it up.
So this time I embarked on secret slimming mission without telling anyone.
Andrew was the only other person who knew about my plan.
Every time I failed at yet another bid to beat the bulge, I was always left mortified when I had to confess to my family and friends that I couldn’t stick at it.
I ditched the crisps, cakes and biscuits and started eating three healthy meals a day with no snacking in between and I signed up to the gym and started going once a day.
I had never exercised before, but I knew if I was going to transform my frumpy figure I had to get active.
Every day I would swim for an hour or pound the treadmill. At first I could only power walk but as my fitness improved I was able to build it up into a run.
Instead of stepping the scales every few days and praying the numbers would change, I decided only to weigh myself once a month.
I would pop into Boots in our hometown of Dorchester, Dorset, and pay 50p to do it on the machine.
To keep motivated I printed out the embarrassing snap of Andrew and I from the wedding and carried it everywhere I went.
Along with my phone, purse and lipstick it became one of my handbag essentials.
And every time I felt tempted to cheat or pig out I would pull it out as a stark reminder of how I didn’t want to end up.
I wouldn’t do a food shop without it just in case I caved in and bought junk.
I had already been quite plump, but my weight had spiralled out of control after falling pregnant with my first daughter, Lily, now seven.
I made the most of eating for two and used it as an excuse to eat whatever I felt like.
Cheesy Doritos crisps were my ‘craving’ and I could easily polish off a whole family-size pack in a day.
‘If you eat any more of those the baby will come out orange!’ Andrew even joked.
Then after having Lily, I fell pregnant again almost straight away – just three months down the line.
I hadn’t lost any of my post-baby weight before I discovered I was expecting for the second time.
‘What harm will one more biscuit do?’ I’d think, helping myself to another and taking full advantage of my ‘eating for two’ excuse once more.
I had already piled on the pounds so I saw no use in trying to lose them while pregnant.
By the time Bethany, now six, arrived, I was bigger than ever.
But it was the picture that proved to be the reality check I needed and kick-started my health kick.
After embarking on my slimming mission there was no going back.
I lost 6st before anyone really noticed or commented on my slender new frame.
I had been wearing a baggy coat everywhere, but when I swapped it for more fitted clothes the compliments started coming.
One of the mums from school even came up to me in town, in April 2014, and said: ‘I hope you don’t mind me asking but have you lost weight?’
I could help but beam from ear to ear, I was thrilled.
I knew that their remarks were genuine because I hadn’t told anyone I was trying to slim.
The lovely comments spurred me on and within 11 months I lost a whopping 14st.
Now I weigh a healthy 9st 5lbs and slip into a size 8 – 10 with ease.
Andrew has lost 7st too – and now weighs 13st – and gone from a 44 inch waist to 34 inch.
Now when he wakes up next to me each morning he tells me how gorgeous he thinks I look and I couldn’t be prouder of him either.