"I still find it hard to believe I dance in a samba costume!"

Emma lost 20kg, landed a job at WW and became a professional dancer.

Emma's weight loss story

Name: Emma Lindsay
Weight loss: 20kg
Was: 90kg | Now: 70kg
Height: 169cm | Age: 34
How long it took: 13 years
Method: Group Coaching and Online

Then & Now

Emma then and now

 

My weight didn't concern me in my teens

I was going out all the time and wasn't conscious of my weight. When I looked in the mirror I thought I looked awesome! It wasn't until I hit 20 and my size-16 work pants became too tight that I realised I was overweight. I couldn't even walk up the hill to my office without puffing and panting. Being unfit at my young age made me realise it was time to make a change.

My impression of WW had been that it was only for old ladies. At the time, one of my colleagues had lost weight and looked great. She told me she went to WW . I joined her at Group Coaching near our work and loved it. I was still young and it gave me all the tools I needed to look after myself.

 

WW gave me life long education

I didn't know anything about food and healthy eating, so for me it was an education. I was hopeless; I was living with friends, filling up on rice and pasta, and drinking a lot of alcohol. Learning about portions and healthy swaps was an important part of my journey. I hadn't realised that I was eating more than three times the amount of food that I needed.

"WW takes you back to step one, teaching you how to make simple, healthy meals and snacks."

At first didn't tell my friends that I was on WW. I was very secretive because I didn't want anyone to think that I was boring, or that I wouldn't drink or join in social activities. There are so many tricks I followed, like swapping my midori and lemonade (5 SmartPoints) for a vodka and soda (2 SmartPoints) and choosing steak and salad instead of hot chips. Small changes like these helped me stay on track while still socialising and having fun. If I’m going out to dinner now, I always look up the menu online first and pick out my healthier choice. 

 

I'm not perfect at maintenance

When I first joined WW I got so close to reaching my goal weight, but I’d stop tracking and gain 5kg, then come back to the Program and lose it again. I’ve come to understand that it’s not always about being perfect and reaching that "magic number". Feeling good in my dance costumes, and having good health and high-energy levels are what matter to me. If I feel my clothes are getting tight, I go back to tracking my food to be super accountable.

 

I now work at WW

By the time I’d lost about 15kg, I was so in love with the WW! I was living it and breathing it. I’d talk to strangers on the street about it – all my friends and family knew - there were no secrets anymore! I saw the job advertised and knew it was meant to be. I’ve now been at WW for 11 years. My current role is digital content manager, which means I look after all the content for the WW website.

Emma Lindsay

I found my passion in samba

When I was travelling in 2009 I fell in love with Brazil – the culture and the energy. I saw a famous samba school’s rehearsal in Rio and I remember walking into the room hearing the drums, the singing, and being mesmerised by the movement... It was the most incredible energy I’ve ever experienced. I was blown away by the dancers, and said, “I want to do that!”

When I returned  home, I started learning samba at Latin Vibrations in Townsville. I’ve been at the studio for five years now, starting as a beginner and now I’m an instructor. I teach weekly samba classes and we learn routines to perform at concerts and local events. I went back to Rio in 2016 and performed with Carnival! It was pretty cool going back to the same samba school that first inspired me.

 

Everyone can find their joy through dance!

I encourage everyone to try dancing, even if you’ve never done it before or have had a few years off.  Through movement, you learn to let yourself go. In our everyday life we're self-conscious and paranoid about falling over or looking silly, but throwing yourself into dance allows you to learn how to have fun, move your body and not be so strict or critical of yourself.

­The first time I performed in a samba costume, I was about 5kg heavier than I am now and I couldn't believe I was going to be wearing one in public. I’m so much more confident now! I say, “It’s just a bum and watch me shake it!”

Emma dancing

Emma’s top tips

1. Stay healthy on the go
When you’re travelling, do as much activity as you can – walk everywhere! There’s no better way to explore a new place. Also, take snacks with you like nuts and fruit.

2. Don’t go all or nothing
A lot of people think they need to completely give up chocolate, or sugar, or alcohol to be successful. I think it’s the hardest challenge, but the best thing to learn is moderation.

3. Ditch the guilt
Know that if you do have a piece of chocolate, it’s okay. It’s the mental side of it that can be tricky. Don’t feel like you’ve messed up and that you have to throw in the towel. You can always get back on track. The best part about WW is that once you learn and embrace the fundamentals you’ll be set up for life.

4. Dance everywhere
Keep moving! I dance everywhere I go. I’m always samba dancing up the hallway or dancing to my mailbox. I've even been busted in the work elevator.