Name: Misty Gauthier
Job: Bank-teller supervisor
Weight before: 107 kg Weight after: 66 kg
Despite her family history of type 2 diabetes, Misty Gauthier ignored her growing waistline for most of her life. Exercise seemed like torture to her, and she found it easier to grab some takeaway than cook.
In fact, it wasn’t unusual for her to eat out at every meal – a bacon, egg and cheese sandwich on her morning commute, catered work lunches followed by pizza for dinner.
She gained 27kg over four years, reaching a high of 107kg.
THE CHANGEWhen Gauthier visited her doctor for a check-up in February 2009, the doctor recommended testing her blood sugar levels – and the test revealed she was pre-diabetic.
“I didn’t want to have to take pills or give myself an injection every day for the rest of my life,” she says. “I was only 23. It scared me and made me mad at myself.”
Determined to avoid diabetes and its complications, Gauthier took control of the scales.
THE LIFESTYLEShe immediately bought herself an elliptical machine and started logging 30 to 60 minutes on it five or six days a week while watching her favourite TV shows.
“I made a deal with myself: if I’m not on the elliptical, then I don’t watch TV at all,” she says.
Despite all her dedication, her weight loss stalled at 9kg. “I thought my scales were broken!” she laughs.
A food journal soon revealed that while Gauthier was eating the right foods – eggs, protein shakes, salad, lean meats and vegies – she was eating far too much of them.
“My ‘healthy’ chicken and pasta dinner contained more than 4000 kJs! I was clueless,” she says.
She scaled back her portion sizes and added nutritious snacks like carrots and hummus to avoid bingeing at meals – and dropped 18 more kilos by the end of the year, enough to bring her back from the brink of diabetes.
When her elliptical machine broke in February 2010, Gauthier took up running. She’d tried taking it up a year earlier but soon quit after barely making it around the block. This time she kept on plugging away until, six weeks later, she was able to run 3km.
In April, and another 18kg lighter, Gauthier competed in her first 5km run. “Running helped me break through plateaus,” she says. “This is the first time in my life I weigh less than 70kg!”
THE REWARDNow she’s no longer carrying an extra 40kg, Gauthier is healthier, lighter on her feet and full of energy.
“I went from five coffees a day to two, and I feel invigorated instead of exhausted after a 10km hike,” she says. “I feel accomplished. If I can make this change, anyone can.”
“When I lost 30kg, I bought myself a diamond watch as a reward for my accomplishment.”PLAN AHEAD
“Before I leave work, I decide which exercise I’m going to do that day. Then it’s set in my mind and there are no other options.”DIVERSIFY YOUR DAIRY
“I make white sauces and dips healthy by swapping heavy cream for nutritious, low-kJ almond milk.”