Four years ago, the thought of running seemed impossible to Beth Azzopardi. The Sydney mother-of-two was the first to admit she’d let herself go.
“I was quite fit up until the end of high school,” Azzopardi, 39, 9Honey. “Then I went to university and I put on a lot of weight.”
She became a high school teacher and met and married her husband Rick, 45. Soon, their children Mason, six, and Kai, four were born.
“I was obese and then when I had the kids I put on more weight,” she tells 9Honey.
While Azzopardi was happy with everything in her life, she wasn’t happy about her weight. To make matters worse, her husband is one of those super-fit men who can eat whatever he wants. He’s also a PE teacher who often jogs the 25 kilometres to school “just for for fun”.
Over the years Azzopardi tried several methods to lose weight including some she’d rather forget.
“I tried every fad diet out there,” she says. “I tried the lemon detox, pills, herbal tea.”
While each resulted in short-term, temporary weight loss, none of them proved to be sustainable, nor did any of them address the lifestyle changes required for long-term weight loss.
Even exercise proved challenging for the busy mum to achieve on a regular basis.
“I would go to extremes and exercise at the gym five days a week and then get disappointed that I hadn’t lost 10 kilos and stop,” she says.
Her lowest point was when she was walking to the park to meet a friend and, having pushed a double pram with both kids inside to the location, found herself too breathless even to say hello.
“Then my two-year-old wanted to play and I had to tell him, ‘Mummy just has to sit here for a bit.'”
The friend she met at the park saw Azzopardi’s struggle, and told her about a program she had just started called Healthy Mummy.
“I liked that I didn’t have to give up the foods I like and how easy it was,” she says. “And it did it all for me. The app would tell me what to eat and send water reminders.”
She also started exercising again, choosing 40 minute walks while pushing the pram.
“The biggest change I noticed was the amount of energy I had,” she says. “I lost probably 18 kilos in the first six months and was just walking pushing the double pram and the weight was falling off.”
“I tried every fad diet out there.”
Azzopardi also credits her success with the program to the support she received through the Healthy Mummys Facebook page.
“It’s all mums trying to lose weight with kids and we are tired,” she says. “The support is fantastic.”
These days Azzopardi is the fittest and healthiest she has even been and is currently training to run her first marathon, having completed several half marathons.
When it comes to food, she starts each day with a healthy smoothie and makes sure to treat herself with her favourite chocolate.
To those at the beginning of their weight loss journeys, Azzopardi says is nothing else has worked for you, give Healthy Mummy a go.
“My life is completely transformed now,” she says.
Share your story at 9Honey@nine.com.au.