2022 Healthy Life Awards Inspirational Journey winner Suzana Ilovski
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Connect: | DekaMozish
Instagram: | @notlessjustbetter
Life before WW was hard in so many ways! There was the physical pain and difficulty of my weight which impacted my ability to do the simplest of tasks. Simple everyday things were challenging whether it was from pain in my joints, difficulty catching my breath or breaking out in a sweat just bending over to pick something up. Then there was the mental impact. It impacted my confidence and my desire to get involved in life. Which brings me to the hardest part and that was watching my child's life on the sidelines versus being involved and participating. Whenever we would go out or away I would hope that others would be able to come or be there, so that my child could go on a ride with someone or play in the park, because the reality was I just couldn't.
After the first year of COVID lock down I had gained even more weight and felt more sluggish and in pain then I ever had. I decided that I really needed to do something and stop accepting that this is “how it was meant to be”. I was desperately looking into diets. Keto, Cohens, Lite n Easy, 1200 cals just to name a few. A few months in I would lose a little, but couldn't sustain the changes, very quickly falling back into old patterns after a week or two. I genuinely felt defeated and thought neither me or my body could change. Those plans didn't fit my life. I couldn't handle feeling hungry and deprived.
In the midst of the 2nd year of lockdowns, after buying a WW book online from Big W, I was curious to see what WW was like so I signed up! I had no idea at that moment that I was making the best decision I had made in a while!
WW has helped me heal my relationship and rediscover my love of food. I had built up so many rules around food from all the fads of the past. To the point where bananas and potatoes were taboo, so I may as well eat anything but those sorts of food. The "eat anything but" became exclusively eating excessive amounts of foods that didn't support my health and instead saving the good stuff (fruits, roasts, lasagne, etc) for special occasions. It sounds so crazy, but this is how my mind worked.
With the WW program I now enjoy a variety of delicious foods all the time! I no longer need to wait for a special occasion - everyday of improved health is the occasion. It has taught me that I can enjoy cooking, baking and eating. To get healthy is not to be starved and deprived. WW guides me and I make the decisions on what suits me best.
It is difficult to put into words the impact WW has had on my life, because it is such a big impact. I feel free of the limitations, fogginess, sadness, despair and pain I felt before. Life still has its ups and downs, but now I feel fresh and awake. I am better equipped mentally and physically. The best way I can explain the impact is via experience. This year I took my child on a trip to QLD and we went on an adrenaline packed ride! The only thing that stopped us going on rides were the queues, not me!
The thing I am most proud of is my shift in mindset. I can actually feel the change of having a more positive outlook, the change of eating well, the change of being able to be involved in life. Now when I have a moment with food, it no longer consumes me and takes over. I don't put my hands in the air and cascade into a space of negative self talk and loathing. Now, I just move on! I cook a delicious meal, move around the house freely getting things done, play basketball with my child and life goes on, happily.
My best advice is to take action, don't wait for motivation. Start small and be consistent. There is no good or bad food. Look at what you CAN do, not what you CAN'T, also look at what you HAVE done, not what you HAVEN'T, and lastly celebrate all your wins, big or small!