Mother of six Mychelle Carruthers lived 120km from her closest Weight Watchers meeting. Juggling the drive and the kids, she lost 33kg and found a new passion.
Name Mychelle Carruthers
Height 1.68 m
Was 97 kg
Lost 33 kg
Weight 64 kg
At my heaviest, I was 111kg. I lost 14kg on my own using advice and recipes from the Weight Watchers website. Down to 97kg, I realised I needed more than that – proper food and exercise education, as well as a support network. My nearest meeting was 120km away from my home in rural Victoria, so I bundled my six kids into the car and trekked there once a week. The first time, I got out of the car, went to walk into the meeting, then turned around and went back to the car. Then, I walked up to the front door again, and back to the car. The kids just stood there watching me. Finally, my eldest daughter, Ebony, who was 12 at the time, took the lead and said, “Mum, are you coming or not?” She strode into the meeting and, as such, I had absolutely no choice but to follow her.
Before having six children, I was fit, active and young. As each child came along, I put on more weight, was incredibly time poor and often alone with the kids as my husband, Brad, was in the army and regularly away. My eldest son, Joshua is now 21, and my youngest are twins, Jake and Charlize, who are five.
Before learning the right way of doing things at Weight Watchers, life was so frantic. I’d get up in the morning and spend all day running around looking after the kids and the house. I wouldn’t eat all day because I couldn’t find the time. As a result, I’d drink Coke to keep me going, but at 4pm each day without fail, I’d hit a slump that cola just couldn’t sustain. I became so ravenous that I’d eat anything in sight – and never anything healthy. I felt cheated out of life.
“Why I finally needed to change”
The defining moment in my journey came when I was out shopping with Charlize, who was three at the time. She pointed out a pretty bikini for me and I lost my temper, telling her I was never going to fit that. I grabbed it off the rack and went into the dressing room, leaving her upset behind me. In the confines of the changing room I looked at my reflection. It was then that I stopped denying my weight was affecting more than just my health. I bought that size 10 bikini, took a photo of it and posted them around the house. I even kept a picture of it in a locket around my neck. Every time I felt my willpower waver, I’d look at that picture and remember what it stood for. I still have an incredibly busy life, but I’ve managed to find the time to work as a Weight Watchers Leader, exercise, eat well, play a team sport, coach the kids’ sport teams, look after them and run a household.
When I got to my Goal weight, I put the cossie on and showed Charlize. The poor little thing was nervous, remembering what happened last time, but her face lit up. She was so excited and proud. When we went to the swimming pool, it was my turn to be nervous. Charlize announced to everyone at the pool, “Look at my mummy’s new swimsuit!” There really was no hiding anymore!
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