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Mia Le Roux
Mia, makes the move towards a healthy lifestyle and loses 15kg!
Mia had struggled with her weight for most of her life, but when it began to affect her performance in sports and her self-confidence whilst around her friends, she knew it was time for a change. With her Weigh-Less Teens and Tweens Plan and a great deal of inspiring determination, she managed to turn up her nose to offers of treats and sweets, to lose an impressive 15kg!
“I wanted to be healthy, confident and slim like all my friends so badly, that I was determined to reach Goal Weight” – Mia Le Roux
I was always a chubby toddler, but I really started struggling with my weight as soon as I started school. I love good food and my mom and I used to bake often. Of course, I couldn’t say no to the great treats we used to bake. It got to the point where I had no control over what I ate and I would sometimes eat three cupcakes at a time!
I was in grade three when I realised that I wasn’t like the other children at my school and I was much heavier. My size made me feel so uncomfortable all the time, and my self-confidence was very poor. I was also very self-conscious at school, and although I wasn’t teased, I often felt sad because children at school would say things about my weight behind my back and I would find out about it later. Although my mom and dad never said anything hurtful to me, I knew that they were worried about my unhealthy weight, and about how much more I was putting on.
I did try to eat healthy, but this never worked because I still had no control over how much food I would eat, nor could I manage my cravings for sweet things. Because of this, my cholesterol was very high and I had no energy for my day-to-day and extramural activities.
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FACTS & FIGURES
Weight then: 79kg
Goal weight: 64kg
Weight lost: 15kg
Time taken: 7 months
Feeling the effects on the field
I knew that I had to do something about my weight when I was in grade four. The extra weight that I was carrying began to affect all my sports, as I couldn’t compete in any of the lifesaving competitions, or keep up with my friends on the tennis court. I was just too heavy! The other girls would all wear cute dresses for tennis tournaments, but because my weight had made me so self-conscious, I couldn’t even think about wearing a tight dress in front of so many people. I felt like everybody was looking at me and thinking badly about my size. I wanted to be able to participate in all my sports and feel great and confident like my friends, instead of embarrassed about the way I looked and how my weight affected my performance.
I realised that I would have to make a change in order to carry on with all the activities I enjoyed so much and make the most of my teenage years. My mom and I started looking for healthy ways with which I would be able to get rid of all the bad habits that I had picked up over the years, and lose all the extra weight I had been carrying around with me. I knew I needed support along my weight loss journey, and an eating plan that would teach me to live by healthy principles. My mom’s friend, Jane was overweight as a child, and had lost weight on Weigh-Less. We decided to join a group in Bloemfontein. I was so scared at my first meeting, and I was worried that I would never be able to eat anything sweet again!
Ups and downs
I managed to stick to my Eating Plan for six months and I lost 12kg! But although I had lost so much weight, I was still not fully dedicated to the programme. I still wanted to eat all the sweet things I enjoyed so much, and I didn’t want to have to worry about watching my weight anymore or controlling my portions. I stopped following my Eating Plan for two years and picked up 23kg over this time. All my problems returned, even worse than before.
I went to the doctor for a check-up and he told my mother and I that I could have serious health issues growing up if I did not do something about my weight, even to the point where I could die! I burst into tears in his office because it was such a terrible feeling hearing how bad my weight problem had become. My mom suggested we try Weigh-Less again, this time with a bit more determination to reach my Goal Weight and get rid of my weight problems for good!
We re-joined Weigh-less. The first week was challenging because everybody ate sweets and chocolates during break at school, but I had lost weight on Weigh-Less once before, so I knew that I could do it again! I just had to remind myself that I had to lose the weight and keep it off this time. I wanted to be healthy, confident and slim like all my friends, so badly that I was determined to reach Goal Weight.
After the first week, I went back to my Group Meeting to see if I had managed to drop weight. I had, and I was so happy to be on the right track again. A typical breakfast for me from then onwards would be yoghurt and fruit, a very yummy chicken wrap for lunch, and for dinner, fish and mash. I realised that I could eat healthy and my food could still taste great.
The ball in my court
The most challenging part of my weight loss journey were all the birthday parties! They were difficult to manage in the beginning, because all the chocolates, sweets and chips would be very tempting. My mom helped me manage this by packing cheese, cucumber and carrots for me to snack on while all the other children were eating plenty of cake and chips. This was hard to watch, but I knew that I had to be strong in order to keep losing weight. After a month back on Weigh-Less it became much easier because I could eat Weigh-Less Break-outs! This really helped because I was able to enjoy foods that my friends were eating, in the form of treats during break times and hockey tournaments. I could keep both my sweet tooth and the scale happy by choosing a snack from the Weigh-Less Break-out range, and I knew that this would be a healthier choice than most of the snacks offered at the tuck-shop at school.
My family was very supportive of me while I was trying to lose my weight, and my Group Leader was very helpful and kind to me. There were a few weeks when I gained weight, but she kept me motivated and was so positive and encouraging, inspiring me to carry on with my journey. I had to be very dedicated to my Eating Plan and very determined to reach Goal Weight. Although it wasn’t always easy, I stayed motivated by reminding myself that I would be so much happier, healthier and confident once I had lost the weight. Imagining myself not having to worry about my weight on the tennis court, and instead excelling in the extramural activities I participated in, was enough to make me stick to all the healthy changes I had made
Finally feeling healthy
After seven months, I eventually reached my Goal Weight. It was such a great feeling to finally feel healthy and look so much better. My family and friends were so proud of me, and I was complimented by so many people at how great I was looking. I was also so proud of myself because I had learnt to be self-disciplined.
I feel so much better now. I am so much lighter on my feet and because of this, I made the Southern Freestate B-team for Hockey and the A-team for my school. I feel part of the team now, and not like I am letting everybody down because I am too slow and have no energy. I have started winning my tennis matches again because I am much quicker and I can get to the ball faster. I can run around with the other girls, and I finally feel like I fit in with everybody else.
I am a very sporty girl and I don’t really like dressing up, but now I can wear skinny jeans like all the other girls my age, and I don’t feel like everybody is watching me.
My whole family has started following the Weigh-Less principles and we enjoy our Weigh-Less meals together. I still follow the Weigh-Less principles, but I am not as strict as before. I can now enjoy a cupcake when I go to parties, but I only have half, because if I have any more all the sugar makes me feel ill. I also know how horrible it feels to be overweight and I don’t ever want to have that problem again.