People often talk about the ‘tipping point’ that kickstarted their weight loss journey, for example, not being able to fit into an old pair of jeans or pain and disability due to overstressed joints.
For new mum Leisa, her watershed moment was something altogether unexpected. At 116kg, the 39-year-old Injury Management Advisor from NSW had an accident in the bathroom.
“I broke a toilet,” she tells Yahoo Lifestyle.
“I was using the toilet and it dislodged from the concrete base. I was mortified. I knew it was my weight that had done it,” she says.
Over the following 18 months, Leisa overhauled her eating and exercise habits to lose an impressive 45kg, all while parenting her newborn son, Isaac.
Leisa describes her pre-weight loss lifestyle as “very unhealthy” and admits that she wasn’t aware of her size because she was “too afraid” to step on the scales.
“I would eat foods that were very high in fat and sugar and would eat in excess. I never felt full and always wanted more food. I remember purchasing a deep fryer and this was my go-to for a quick meal.
“I avoided any exercise as I always felt tired and heavy and I didn’t realise I was so overweight as I was too afraid to weigh myself. Nobody ever said anything so I thought I was getting away with it but every day was a struggle, even getting out of the car would get me out of breath.”
Leisa’s pregnancy was a ‘difficult’ one which saw her gain a further 35kg, leaving her worried that she wouldn’t be able to keep up with her energetic young bub.
“My son was born and I knew from that moment he was going to be an active child. I knew as it stood I wouldn’t be able to keep up with him and I did not want to be a sideline parent,” she explains.
She made sure to ease herself into exercise slowly and gently, using Isaac as a motivation to achieving her goals.
“I started slow, with a newborn its very hard to get the energy to exercise but bit by bit I would force myself to just go for a walk or take him out to the back yard and play with bubbles.
“I was so big so I had to take baby steps.”
As her baby boy grew, Leisa adapted her exercise routine to suit and was soon chasing him around the yard. “Keeping him active keeps me active,” she says.
She now maintains her weight and healthy eating habits with Lite n’ Easy and says the brand’s ‘Bacon & Mushroom Frittata on a toasted English Muffin’ is the “best thing” she’s ever tasted.
Leisa’s dramatic transformation — which partly took place during the pandemic lockdown period — left her friends and family astonished.
“They all think I look amazing! Due to Covid, I was just at home for months and then when restrictions were eased and people saw me they couldn’t believe it.
“I get so many amazing compliments now.”
As mortifying as it was, without the toilet mishap Leisa and Isaac’s life might look a little different to what it does now.
“It would’ve been really unfair on my son [if I hadn’t lost the weight]. I’m so happy I made the change,” she says.
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