Tired and unhappy trying to juggle study and part-time work, Abbey Justin decided to slim down with her mother and sister and became closer to them in the process.
Name: Abbey Justin
Height: 1.64 m
Was: 82.3 kg
Lost: 21.3 kg
Weight: 61 kg
A juggling act
Trying to maintain a part-time job and finishing my four-year social work degree at the same time was definitely one of the things that compounded my bad food choices. Despite living at home, I ate a lot of takeaway meals, indulged in those ‘sometimes’ foods a little too often and only played a game of netball once in a blue moon.
For the five years I was overweight, I felt very self-conscious and unhappy with every aspect of my life. I was able to lose a few kilos on my own but lacked the motivation and knowledge to make long-lasting lifestyle changes, so I always put the weight back on.
That was until I saw my sister Jodie and mum Annette having such great success with Weight Watchers, which prompted me to give it a go. I was looking for a long-term solution and something that would fit into my life rather than just a quick fix, so the answer for me was really clear.
As Jodie, 33, didn’t live with us anymore, catching up at meetings and losing weight together was a real bonding experience. The meetings for us would be a social affair and a great help in spurring each other along in changing our lives for the better.
My younger brother Dylan, who was about 13 at the time, would always wish us luck on our way to the meetings then, when we got home, would be the first to ask how much weight we lost that week. That might seem like a small thing but, to us, was hugely encouraging.
In the end, Jodie and mum lost 20kg and 15kg, respectively, and Jodie even became a Leader for a few years. All up, I lost just over 20kg. We’re always walking together now, which is great quality time, and I even help mum with the cooking these days.
When New Year’s Eve fell during my weight loss, my resolution was to learn a new meal every week. I bought just about all the Weight Watchers cookbooks and my favourite dishes would have to be the Thai and Asian ones stir-fries and salads are so easy to prepare. I also love chilli con carne.
For the love of fitness
Since losing weight I met my partner Andre, who just happens to be a personal trainer. As a result, he’s been a huge help in terms of staying motivated, keeping fit with regular exercise and maintaining my new healthy weight. I now go to the gym three to four times a week and mainly use the bikes, treadmills and rowing machine for cardio workouts. However, I want to start doing weights so I can tone up in a few places.
Overall, I’m much happier in myself now and this has even had a flow-on effect into my job. Losing weight has not only given me greater self-confidence but improved my relationship with people around me, in particular my wonderful family.
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