“Introducing Veggies Into My Diet Helped My Lose 25 Kilos”

WomensHealth |

“People don’t even recognise me!”

Losing weight requires you to make a lot of decisions, says Hlonelwa Mpelwane. “It’s also a journey of a thousand kilometres, which begins with one single step.” The first step for her was simply deciding to start.

Hlonelwa Mpelwane

Age: 33
Occupation: Accountant
Weight before: 85 kg
Weight after: 60 kg
Height: 1,53 cm
Time taken to lose weight: 1 year
Secret weapon: Ditching fad diets

The Gain

“I’m from a family with a couple of overweight people, but I wasn’t one of them,” says Hlonelwa. Her weight gain was gradual and started late in high school… And continued into varsity. She picked up a penchant for junk food, favouring slap chips, burgers, pizza and fried chicken. “I hardly ate any veggies besides potatoes,” she says.

READ MORE7 Fat-Melting Supplements You Need To Include In Your Diet

The Change

In August 2007, Hlonelwa fell pregnant and found herself in a crisis. “I couldn’t afford to get any bigger,” she says. So she decided to take control of the situation. “I started making healthier food choices because of the pregnancy.”

READ MORE: The 3 Most Important Changes To Make If You’re Trying To Lose Belly Fat

The Lifestyle

“I introduced veggies into my diet, cut down on sugar and oily foods, opted for fat-free foods and I ditched bread, rice and sodas,” she explains. Her diet entailed five meals a day, all in small portions. “I mostly ate veggies and protein and drank a lot of water,” she says. As soon as she gave birth, she buckled down and hit the road. “I started with light runs three times a week and soon after that I was doing 10 and 20 kays every now and again,” she says.

READ MORE“I Lost 10 Kilos In 5 Months Just By Ditching All The Junk Food”

The Reward

“I bumped into someone I went to school with and she didn’t recognise me – I had to reintroduce myself because I was a different person altogether,” she says. “I was in awe.”  Having dropped five dress sizes, she also had some shopping to do. Hlonelwa says her self-confidence got a much-needed boost and she now feels much younger and more energetic. “I fly through a 10k run now, something I never thought I could do,” she says.

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Hlonelwa’s Tips 

> Give up fad diets. “This should be your lifestyle; something you can sustain forever.”
> Celebrate small victories. “Be your own cheerleader and celebrate when you decline cheesecake.”
> Don’t give up. “Every hour make a choice to keep at it because it’s worth it.”

Looking for more? Here are five basic rules you need to follow to lose belly fat.

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