Transformation Tuesday with Melissa Potts
Man I love reading these types of transformation stories. Mind blowing stuff right here, from emotional eating to being rejected by a weightloss reality TV show. Everyone has a story to tell and beautiful Melissa joins us today to share how she transformed her life into a healthy and happy one. Welcome Melissa and thank you so much for taking time to let us into your life. Keep up the amazing work, you are such an inspiration. For those that wish to share their new healthy lifestyle please fill out our Q&A here. I can't wait to feature you.
How old are you and please can you share your health and fitness journey to date?
I am 33 years old. I've never been a "skinny" girl, but always had curves (in all the right places). When I fell pregnant with my first child -- I was eating for not just myself and my baby -- but for the whole nation! I gained 37kg in less than 9 months. Everyone said the weight would just melt off me once I began breastfeeding, but due to a number of factors breastfeeding wasn't successful for me, so the weight DIDNT budge.. 4 short months later, my little brother was killed in a horrific car accident. He was only 19. My whole world shattered. I turned to food for comfort. So began my vicious cycle of trying anything and everything to lose weight, but being an emotional eater -- nothing worked. Three kids later, and my weight was out of control. Reality TV shows approached me to be a contestant on their shows -- but when I was ultimately rejected that just fuelled more emotional eating. It was a vicious cycle. So I hit rock bottom, and decided to join my local gym and make positive changes. In twelve months I lost just over 30kilograms and maintained that weight loss, plus have shed a whopping 40inches from my body. Not to mention have also made life-long, and inspiring friendships. My life has completely changed for the better.
What types of foods did you used to eat as a kid and young adult? What's changed since then?
HUGE meals. Lots of pastas, cheesey dishes... Take away food. Just lots and lots of food! Portion sizes were crazy! Growing up I'd either be binge eating or not eating at all! Now I try my best to eat FRESH. Fresh produce, lots of vegetables & fruits, no processed foods. I try to make as much as I can from scratch that way I know exactly what's in it. I still have my moments or occasions where I'll attack a cheese platter or devour a couple of slices of pizza, endulge with a wine or two -- but I know now that they are SOMETIMES foods -- and not an everyday occurrence.
Do you play any sports or what sports do you like watching?
I don't play sports, or watch any sports on TV. Unless the Olympics are on -- I've always enjoyed watching the gymnastics and weight & power lifting. I enjoy meeting up with friends and working out in local parks, or at the gym. That's my sport.
What are your interests, passion and what makes you smile?
I love photography, and makeup. I've recently started my own online business selling naturally based makeup and skin care online -- so I get to combine my love of both photography & makeup with that. Hearing back from customers who love my products makes me smile, and I love that. Fitness wise, I also love weightlifting and Crossfit. Right now I'm nowhere near a competing level -- but I'd like to think one day I'd be able to give it a go.
What was the catalyst that sparked your lifestyle change?
I was at my heaviest weight EVER. I'd been rejected from yet another weightloss reality TV show -- this one hurt more, as the casting agency approached me for it and encouraged me to audition -- otherwise I wouldn't have even known about it. But after weeks of getting my hopes up that finally someone would be able to help me shift this weight -- I was rejected. I was at an all time low. I wouldn't leave the house. I wouldn't socialise at all. I didn't want to get out of bed... But then one day I just thought -- SCREW THEM! This is MY life, I'll do it on my own! So I went down to my local 5 Star Fitness gym and signed up as a member. They have a free crèche, so that was a bonus! I always found it difficult to exercise with the kids around. But they are now my biggest supporters and they cheer me on, or do workouts with me. I have a wonderful and supportive Personal Trainer at the gym also. He puts up with all my whinging and complaining! But he also pushes me, and I'm now doing things I never thought I could do -- or would even want to do! He keeps telling me that I'll thank him one day for all the hard PT sessions he's made me do -- and he's right! I've never regretting any workout that I've done. I only regret the ones I DONT do. I love how empowering the gym & the people there can be. It's been life changing to say the least.
What are some of your dreams/goals you hope to achieve over the next 12 months?
At the moment my deadlifting Personal Record is 132.5kg. I'd like to get that up to 140kg at least. I'd love to actually enjoy running. I struggle with it. So I'd like to concur that once and for all -- mostly so when I'm doing a WOD that involves running I'm not going to want to literally run AWAY! I'd love to increase my upper body strength also. I've never been very strong in that department -- so to even manage ONE pull up would be awesome! I don't have any "weight loss" goals -- as I know that whilst I'm doing all of the above -- the weight loss and inches lost will be a given.
What tips would you like to share with my readers about your transformation?
I used to get hung up on the scales. If I was eating well and exercising, yet the scales weren't moving -- I'd just give up and go off looking for something else to try. So, I stopped weighing myself. I started monitoring other things. Like how my clothes fit. How I feel. If the workout I did today wasn't as taxing as it was the day before. Can I lift heavier this week than I was a month ago? I also got a DEXA scan done through Measure Up Australia. Their body composition scans are so informative and empowering -- you get to see what your body is like and what your body is actually capable of achieving with about 99% accuracy. Throw those BMI charts out the window. Go and have a DEXA scan done. Trust me -- you will be armed with so much information and knowledge about YOUR body -- you can then make REALISTIC plans to achieve your goals.
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