A diet and lifestyle overhaul radically changed Zakiee Labib’s life
Before: 108 KG After: 60KG
Fast Food Heaven may not appear on any map, but it’s how Labib refers to her suburb. Even before she became pregnant in 2005, the 168cm interior designer ate out or hit a drive-through at least four nights a week – pushing her weight over 90kg.
A year and a half after giving birth to her first child, Labib was still a size 22. With her busy job and a new baby, “I didn’t feel as if I had time to focus on myself,” she says.
Making the diet change
Until her daughter was 18 months, Labib believed her poor diet, low energy and stubborn weight were just part of being a new mum. But as her daughter grew, Labib couldn’t deny the truth. “I finally took a hard look at my health,” she says.
After realising she was eating twice the recommended servings of most foods, Labib replaced fast food with healthy, low-kilojoule recipes, like wholemeal pasta loaded with vegies.
She also dusted off her cross trainer and hopped on for half an hour a day while her daughter slept. As she became fitter, she added more resistance.
In June 2007, Labib was down to 84kg when she learnt she was pregnant again. With her doctor’s approval, she kept an eye on her portions, used the cross trainer, walked and did prenatal yoga three or four times a week until her son was born in February 2008.
Three weeks later, with her GP’s permission, she was working out again. She added running, strength training and kickboxing to her routine, and the number on the scale fell below 90 by April. Come August 2010, it dropped to 60.
“This is the least I’ve ever weighed as an adult!” she says. “I’ve completely transformed.”
The reward for losing weight
Labib replaced her maternity wardrobe with size-8 outfits, including the shorts and slim-fitting dresses she used to avoid. And she has become an avid exerciser.
“I can run 8km and still have energy to run around with my kids at the park. Being active makes me happy.”
Zakiee Labib's top diet tips
- Drive with a snack:“I make sure I have a healthy snack, like an apple, in the car.”
- Go to a class: “Group workout classes help push you. It’s a silent competition.”
- Eliminate temptation: “I bring only my plate of food to the table to avoid eating more than I need.”