Sunday 4 December 2016

TV3 star Elaine Crowley: 'I'm probably classified as clinically obese but it doesn't bother me anymore'

Take-out meals for two and yo-yo diets - Elaine Crowley's story

Published 10/05/2015 | 02:30

TV presenter Elaine Crowley
TV presenter Elaine Crowley
Elaine Crowley on the Red Carpet at The Peter Mark VIP Style Awards 2015 at The Marker Hotel,Dublin. Pictures Brian McEvoy
Elaine Crowley in Badgley Mischka

During her hardest times she said: "I would order a takeaway meal for two and then I didn't want to go out because I felt bigger, it was a vicious cycle and it snowballed from there."

  • Go To

As a child she was athletic and sporty. Then, at 15, she broke her ankle and put on three stone over several months: "I was utterly miserable. I went from wearing nice to baggy clothes. I was very self-conscious about it. My sister came back from Australia after a year away, not that she'd think negatively, but she didn't recognise me." She says: "I have been struggling ever since."

In school, there was added pressure to conform: "Everyone around me was looking up to models like Kate Moss, the heroin chic look took off and that is what girls aspired to. But even then, looking back, I was a hell of a lot thinner than I am now. If I was that size now, I would be delighted."

It wasn't until her twenties that she started dieting: "I went on my first diet at 21. I had just finished college and I decided to do something about it. I joined Weight Watchers. But I have done every diet at this stage - the Dukan diet, Unislim, the cabbage soup diet, Lipotrim. In one of the diets there were tablets involved and then on the liquid diet, I lost 16lbs in four days. After a decade of doing all this stuff to my body, my metabolism operates at a snail's pace."

Elaine Crowley on the Red Carpet at The Peter Mark VIP Style Awards 2015 at The Marker Hotel,Dublin.
Pictures Brian McEvoy
Elaine Crowley on the Red Carpet at The Peter Mark VIP Style Awards 2015 at The Marker Hotel,Dublin. Pictures Brian McEvoy

Read more: 'I would be honest, but absolutely not' - Elaine Crowley denies Ryan Tubridy romance

The 37-year-old says she can pin-point two periods in her life when her weight was at its heaviest: "After my dad died and also when I went through a hard time in my thirties."

"In the evenings, I would have been by myself, and loneliness, I suppose, has a lot to do with it. I eat when I feel lonely. Because of the constant dieting I didn't know when I was hungry and when I wasn't. I would order a large pizza or a take-away meal for two and then I didn't want to go out afterwards because I felt bigger. It was a vicious cycle and it snowballed from there. Of course I have shed tears over it. Trying on a dress that doesn't fit me. You get fed up.

She made excuses not to see friends: "It wasn't about my weight, it was how I felt about how I looked. I avoided ceremonies, big events, red carpets. The thought of putting on a dress filled me with dread. "One presenter told me that I would be beautiful if I lost weight and said she would prefer to have a thin body and a plain face than vice versa."

Now, she no longer lets her weight stop her from enjoying life: "I looked in the mirror at my body this morning. I wouldn't have done that before. I would have been too afraid to. Thank God, I do think I have a nice shape, a small waist and bigger bust and bum. God bless the Kardashians! This year I was a size 16 going to the VIP Style awards, which is not at my thinnest. There wouldn't have been a chance in hell I would have done that a few years ago.

Read more: Is love in the air for tv stars Ryan Tubridy and Elaine Crowley?

Elaine Crowley hosts TV3's 'Midday' show, which has an all-female panel
Elaine Crowley hosts TV3's 'Midday' show, which has an all-female panel

"I haven't exercised since Christmas so I need to get my ass in gear. At my heaviest I was classed as 'clinically obese'. I think I could still be now. I haven't a breeze what I weigh now. But it doesn't bother me anymore. I can say that hand on heart. I have worked too hard to overcome my issues. I am who I am.

"I do worry a bit about it as I get older. Stroke, heart, attack that type of thing. But I have a small waist, I don't carry fat there, and that is when you are more at risk. If I had children I would be more worried but I only have to take responsibility for myself."

She believes many who struggle with weight are fighting an uphill battle: "We don't know what we are eating. Everything is loaded with hidden sugar now. The odds are stacked against us.

She has turned down the option of a gastric band operation but hasn't ruled it out.

She is dismayed over our obsession with weight: "It seems no one ever asks me about anything else. I abseiled for the Laura Lynn charity last week, no one asks me about that. I've done 15 years of interviews and it's always brought up."

Elaine Crowley in Badgley Mischka
Elaine Crowley in Badgley Mischka

Sunday Independent

Read More

Promoted articles

Editors Choice

Also in this section