Fitness

‘I found out I had a wheat allergy and diet adjustments helped me lose 35kg’


Samantha from NSW had trouble making sustainable changes to her diet and exercise regime. But after a health scare, she was re-energised to overhaul her lifestyle.

Samantha was a classic crash dieter. After giving birth to her first child, she used to graze a lot on high-calorie snacks with little nutritional value, would turn to takeaway whenever she was too tired to cook, which was often because she was “so fatigued all the time”.

“I’d crash diet and then fall off the wagon and gain everything straight back,” she tells Body+Soul.

“I could never make sustainable change. I have joined gyms in the past but life always got in the way or classes just don’t line up with my schedule.”

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At her heaviest, the 33-year-old weighed 100kg after the birth of her youngest. But in 2019, Samantha was feeling fatigued and depressed; she had a “health scare” and discovered she’d developed an allergy to wheat, which turned out to be her defining moment.

“When I changed my diet it was like a fog had lifted I had so much more energy so I started to exercise and replace empty calorie foods with nutritionally dense foods,” she says.

She eliminated gluten, packaged snacks and takeaway, and began meal-prepping on Sundays with easy lunches so that it was easy to stay on track.

“It was really tough the first few weeks, but I lost 6kgs in the first month of making changes and after a few weeks my energy levels increased out of sight,” she says.

“I just tried to keep my eyes on the prize and keep on moving. After a couple of months, I found I didn’t crave the foods that I usually did and it became a lot easier.”

Samantha also joined up to Centr, Chris Hemsworth’s fitness and diet app, which she likes because it’s easy to work around her schedule.

“I like to wake up before the rest of my family and exercise before they are awake so that I know that I have the time to get it done,” Samantha says.

“As a busy working mum the afternoons get eaten up with activities and other jobs so I find it best to get it done early.”

She tries to get in 40-50 minutes of exercise every day, and this can range from the Centr workouts to walking, running, and swimming with the kids a few times a week.

This busy working mum has managed to lose 35kg and nearly 10 percent body fat, 25kg of which in the past 12 months and she feels fantastic.

“I can do things that I never dreamed of 12 months ago,” Samantha says.

“I recently ran 10k for the first time and I have never ever been a runner so I’m so proud of myself.”

Her advice to others wanting to embark on their own weight loss journey is to remember that consistency is key, and to not fall victim to ‘mum guilt’.

“I often felt guilty for taking time for me especially if it was taking time away from the kids,” she says.

“But now I know that I am a much better partner and mother if I take care of myself. I also love that I am a healthy role model for my girls.”