Last night I shared this photo on social media:
And immediately my feed got inundated with questions, comments and follows. The most exciting of all is that Sally-Ann Creed followed me and asked me to email her my banting story. Of course I obliged, so for those of you who haven’t read my full banting story, here it is:
I was inspired to try banting through my best friend, Elize. Her sister has a congenital kidney disease and at age 35 was on dialysis and desperate need of a kidney transplant. Elize wanted to be a donor for her sister to save her but was turned down as her BMI was too high. She embarked on Weigh Less and managed to lose 15kg’s but when the specialists started doing the various tests on her to see if she would be a suitable donor, she was turned down again as her full body scan revealed that she had large fatty deposits around her liver, despite having lost 15kg’s and she was once again rejected. She then heard a radio interview with Prof. Noakes and decided to give banting a try. A few months later and a further 7kg’s lighter, she again reapplied to be a kidney donor for her sister and this time her full body scan revealed no fatty deposits around her liver and she was approved and donated a kidney to her sister last year, having lost a total of 22kg’s. She really inspired me to embark on this journey, but first a bit of my own history…
I never had a weight problem & was always slim & active, I’m tall, 176cm and always weighted between 69 – 72kg’s and had a healthy & normal BMI until I made a fateful decision to marry my ex-husband. It was an abusive marriage which ended after 2 years but left me about 10kg’s heavier and with a very unhealthy relationship with food. A few years later, during which my weight yo-yoed, I met my now husband, fell in love, got married and was devastated by 7 years of infertility and recurrent pregnancy loss. My weight ballooned during this time, between all the hormone treatments, IVF’s & surgeries along with 7 first trimester miscarriages. My health was a mess. I was diagnosed as insulin resistant and having high blood pressure. I tried everything. I attended Boot Camp, I joined Weight Watchers, I tried Chinese medicine and acupuncture, I drank shakes, I starved myself and used supplements and even tried a schedule 5 slimming pill called Duromine, with disastrous effects. I became very ill and spent a few months being sent from one specialist to another in an attempt to discover the reasons for my spiralling health, which included extreme vertigo, raised blood pressure. At one point the Dr’s even thought I had Meniere Disease. After I was weaned off the Duromine it was discovered that my ill health was because of the side effects of the drug. I also spent a small fortune at registered dieticians but all to no avail. I’d lose a couple of kg’s but be hungry and craving food all the time and I couldn’t sustain the low fat, bland diets that were being prescribed to me.
After my 7th miscarriage my husband and I decided to stop all fertility treatment and pursue adoption. A few months later, my eldest daughter was placed with us and instead of being over joyed after such a long struggle, my entire life came crashing down around me. I was eventually diagnosed with PADS (Post Adoption Depression Syndrome) and GAD (General Anxiety Disorder) with a touch of PTSD thrown in for good measure. I was a mess and am very thankful to my Dr’s, therapist & medication who helped me through that very difficult time.
By the beginning of this year and with all that history behind me, my weight had ballooned to 118kg’s and inspired by my friend Elize, I decided to give banting a shot. I started officially on the 6th January. The first month I lost almost 9kg’s and was astounded at how easy it had been and how well I was feeling. I did go through all the usual side effects of the lifestyle change initially. I had severe carb flu, I battled with dizziness and extreme leg cramps, I had headaches and I felt bone achingly tired.
But within a month the most amazing things started happening to my body, my blood pressure dropped back down to a normal 120/70, I stopped struggling with insomnia, the IBS that I have struggled with my entire life literally vanished overnight. My skin improved, I don’t even get dry cracked heels anymore. I don’t get mid-afternoon slumps and no longer struggle with fatigue. The best part, I never go hungry and I LOVE the tasty food I get to eat.
About 3 months in, after I’d lost 15kg’s, I started having what I can only describe as an unexplained urge, to exercise. I started by walking around the block in my neighbourhood and about a week in I thought I’d see if I could jog at all. I’d never done this previously because I was terrified that my knees would buckle under my weight or that I’d give myself a heart attack, I was that fat. I gradually started building up my running and now run 6 days a week, Monday’s to Friday’s I run between 5 – 8km’s per day and then put in a long one over the weekend. A few weeks ago I ran my first 10km race and was so inspired by my own achievement and that I registered to run my first half marathon in November. All this from the woman that used to joke that if you ever see me running, you better run too because something is chasing me!
I have NEVER felt stronger in my life. I don’t get sick anymore. I have incredible stamina and the best of all, this entire journey as trebled myself belief, I feel like I could take on and conquer the world. Banting has not only decreased my waistline, it’s increased my physical and mental strength. The amazing thing about the transformation of my body is that even though I am still somewhat overweight, I’ve even started developing visible stomach muscles again, something I NEVER dreamed would have happened at age 42!
When I started banting, I had 42kg’s to lose and believed it was impossible. As of this weekend, I have lost 28kg’s and have another 13 to go to get to the goal weight I set for myself of 77kg’s which would put my BMI at a normal and healthy 24 points for a woman aged 42.
I can never thank my friend Elize enough for inspiring me or thank you, Prof. Noakes and Jono Proudfoot for how you have changed my life.
I was thinking this weekend about what a long way I’ve come. I used to hate having my photo taken. I always looked like a bloated bull frog, I would avoid the camera at ALL costs and very rarely ever saw a photo I actually like. But face has changed so much, I hardly even look like the same person any more!
Here is a photo from the beginning of the year, I’d already lost 10kg’s by then and a photo taken this weekend, 28kg’s a a ton of cm’s later…