United Kingdom

Miss GB claims despite losing HALF her body weight she was still 'biggest girl' in competition

Miss Great Britain has claimed that despite losing 8st, she was still 'probably the biggest girl' in the competition, and believes she won because of her 'personality and story'. 

Jen Atkin, 26, from Ulceby, Lincolnshire, who slimmed down from 17st to 9st, after swapping takeaways for healthy eating, appeared on Good Morning Britain today to speak about winning the longest-running pageant in the UK. 

Jen was named Miss Scunthorpe before soon becoming the runner-up of Miss England in 2018 and was named the 75th Miss Great Britain at a glittering national final in Leicester on Friday. 

She claimed that while she 'definitely wasn't the prettiest girl' in the pageant, and was still the largest of the contestants at a size 10-12, she won because of her personality shining through during the interviews. 

Miss Great Britain has claimed that despite losing 8st, she was still probably the 'biggest girl' in the competition, and believes she won because of her 'personality and story'. She is pictured after winning Miss England in 2018

She slimmed down from 17st to 9st, after swapping takeaways for healthy eating and won the longest-running pageant in the UK, last week. She is pictured before her weight loss 

She appeared on Good Morning Britain where she claimed she was still probably the 'biggest girl' in the competition, and believes she won because of her 'personality and story' 

'I was doing some volunteer work at a homeless shelter and someone said "You would be great for this", said Jen, 'Because pageants love charity work the're so strong on that now a days.' 

'I wasn't the prettiest girl there, and I was probably the biggest girl there as well. But I won the personality round, because I have a good personality and a good story. 

'I definitely wasn't the prettiest girl there as well. To me this is just so much fun.' 

More than 400 guests watched the live Miss Great Britain event at the Athena in Leicester, where contestants took to the stage in fashion wear, swim wear and evening wear before being interviewed live on stage.   

She claimed that while she 'definitely wasn't the prettiest girl' in the pageant. She is pictured at the Miss Yorkshire 2017 Miss England, finals in Birmingham 

Jen insisted that she felt 'empowered' by showing off her stretch marks during the swimsuit competition, and said she felt 'confident' showing off her 'normal' body in front of the audience. 

She said: 'I've got the confidence to go on stage, and when I do, I think, "Wow those people are looking at me". 

'I was in my swimsuit stretchmarks and all. I have so many all over my body, and it's fine, it's normal.' 

When quizzed about whether the swimsuit round of the competition should be scrapped, she said: 'I've been thinking about this quite a lot, and I actually found it empowering being one of the biggest girls on stage, in my little red swimsuit. 

'But I think it should be made optional.'  

Jen believes she was still the largest of the contestants at a size 10-12, she won because of her personality shining through during the interviews

Jen told hoe she was originally inspired to lose weight after the breakdown of her first serious relationship

Jen was originally inspired to lose weight after the breakdown of her first serious relationship, fearing that she wouldn't meet someone else.

Struggling to fit into her clothes, Jen began walking regularly and spending hours in the gym.

As she embraced the single life, while her friends were busy with their own relationships and children, she would spend time studying food packaging to make healthier choices.

Jen who would bike to work for additional exercise, despite not always being able to complete the journey, now exercises five days a week.

She used YouTube to follow workouts including HIIT, running and weightlifting, before being approached by a personal trainer offering additional help.

Jen said she doesn't calorie count but is mindful of what she eats each day.

Jen insisted that she felt 'empowered' by showing off her stretch marks during the swimsuit competition, and told she felt 'confident' showing off her 'normal' body

Jen said she doesn't calorie count but is mindful of what she eats each day and regularly works out 

She is also a country singer and released her first single in 2018 through the record label MHMG, reaching number two in the ReverbNation national charts.

Her twin brother, Sam Atkin, is an international athlete who competed for Great Britain at last year's European Indoor Championships over the 3,000m distance.

Jen previously told: 'I'm so incredibly honoured to be the 75th Miss Great Britain, representing our country alongside my twin brother who runs for Team GB.

'There were 45 Miss Great Britain finalists and I was lucky to not only win the personality award but take home the crown and title of Miss Great Britain 2020.

'It felt absolutely incredible, I'm over the moon.'

Revealing her plans for the year ahead, she added: 'I have so much in the pipeline for my reign, including the release of my next country single this spring.' 

She added: 'It was such a shock - three years ago I would never ever expected to be winning Miss GB. Hard work really does pay off.'