How do you support each other’s wellness journeys?
Michelle: Mum’s amazing! A big part of the reason she joined WW was to show her support for me and what I’ve achieved, as well as being there for my sister who has also begun her own wellness journey recently. When I was named the 2018 NSW Diamond WW Coach of the year, it was Mum who contacted the local paper to suggest they do a story about it. That kind of support is incredible. Mum has always been my biggest supporter.
Leonie: Michelle’s so generous with her knowledge and her tips. We both love baking and cooking and we’ve worked together to alter recipes, discover new WW ones and create healthier versions of our favourite dishes like cakes and lasagne.
“We provide encouragement to each other, celebrate our wins together and pick each other up when things don’t go as we would like.”
What’s your why?
Michelle: I’m a mum to two young boys and a couple of years ago I realised that if I want them to grow up happy and healthy, I need to become that myself, to lead by example. Plus, it takes a lot of energy to keep up with young children! I wanted to get more of that.
Leonie: I wanted to tweak my lifestyle to incorporate more healthy habits, but I’d also seen how much Michelle’s life had changed for the better since joining WW and I wanted to experience it so that I knew first-hand why she’s so passionate about it.
Daughter Michelle, 35, lost 18kg and Mum Leonie, 64, lost 4kg.
How has WW changed your approach to health and wellbeing?
Michelle: In the past, trying to be healthier meant ‘trying to lose weight’ and that always left me feeling like I was punishing myself. Now I understand that a better approach is to focus on creating healthier habits and make improving your overall wellness the priority, and letting weight loss be a positive side effect of that rather than being the main goal.
Leonie: I now realise that achieving your wellness goals isn’t about making big sweeping changes that involve lots of sacrifice and are difficult to maintain. It’s the small everyday tweaks you make consistently that deliver results.
Has your relationship with physical activity changed?
Michelle: I’ve not only rediscovered how much I enjoy it, I feel confident to dive into new things. I just signed on to play netball and despite not knowing anyone on the team and the fact that I haven’t played since I was at school, I feel excited by the challenge.
Leonie: I’ve always been active and I love swimming. I swim 1500m three mornings a week and go for a walk on my non-swimming days. But WW has helped me appreciate all the different ways that exercise improves my wellbeing. I’ve realised I feel so much better physically and mentally when I’m active. It sets me up for the day.
What role has the WW community played in your success?
Michelle: It’s been pivotal. The sense of camaraderie and belonging I feel at WW Workshops and on Connect, WW’s online community propels me to keep going—and is what inspired me to want to become a WW Coach myself.
Leonie: Aside from the support I get from Michelle, both in and outside her weekly WW Workshop, I really value the support I get from fellow WW members. But it works both ways and I appreciate that I can have input in the group, too.
“The sense of camaraderie and belonging I feel at WW Workshops and on Connect propels me to keep going”
What does Mother’s Day mean to you?
Michelle: I love spending it with Mum, and this year we’ll get together for morning tea or lunch. But what I enjoy most is seeing my boys with her, and how much they love her company. After we’ve eaten, she’ll go outside with them and play a bit of backyard cricket—she really gets stuck in.
Leonie: It’s time to spend together and make memories as a family. Above anything else, that’s what I love about Mother’s Day.