By Zinhlezonke Zikalala
“It’s no use being on the right track but going in the wrong direction”
Caroline Magowan was in denial about her unhealthy lifestyle. Although she was hitting the gym, she’d refuel after training with all the wrong things — like hot chips and chocolate.
Weight before: 71kg
Weight after: 58kg
Time taken to lose weight: 4 months
Secret weapons: Training and following a low-carb, high-fat diet
While Caroline was never really overweight, she had a classic apple body shape (associated with greater heart disease, stroke and diabetes risk), carrying all her weight around her middle. She admits that her “preggie belly” was thanks to alcohol and a lack of willpower. “I used to eat bread, pasta, rice and chips. I ate veggies too, but my carb and sugar intake was too high,” she says. So, despite hiking and working out, the weight continued to pile on.
Caroline’s wake-up call came in the form of a dose of humiliation — at her monthly weigh-in with her personal trainer. “My trainer’s silence after my weigh-in was deafening,” she says. Seeing those numbers on the scale forced Caroline to take serious action. “To see change, I had to train hard and, most importantly, eat correctly.”
“I attacked the fat from all angles,” says Caroline, who started with her weakest point — her diet. She went cold turkey with alcohol, cutting it out completely. She also decided to follow a low-carb, high-fat diet. She continued with her usual training routine and added more cardio outside the gym by joining a running club. She began running twice a week and even racked up some medals by finishing two 5km races every month.
Although it took about 8kg before people started noticing Caroline’s weight loss, she knew she was making progress. “My clothing became looser and people stopped asking about my pseudo pregnancy!” she says. Today she has dropped three dress sizes and is feeling great. She now runs 10 to 15km races and is hooked on the energy she has, saying she “feels invincible!”
> Join a running club. “Everyone can run. Don’t be put off by the speedsters and top runners, do your thing one minute at a time.”
> Find a personal trainer. “It’s invaluable. You won’t find excuses not to train when you have someone waiting for you.”
> Put yourself first. “Your family must understand that training time is your time”.
Ready to transform your life too? Sign up to Women’s Health’ sexpert-approved eating and exercise plan — Lean Body Blitz — and watch the weight disappear. Also, Check out how Nokukhanya’s weight loss journey.