Danielle: I lost 2st and ran my first marathon
"Now, I work out because it contributes to my health and my weight-loss efforts."
Start weight: 12st | Weight loss: 2st
Current weight: 10st
Height: 5' 3" | Age: 47
Studio: Upper Coomera, Queensland, Australia
WW Coach: Tanya Teese
Putting other first
Since having kids, I’ve become used to putting everybody else first. I never cared for myself enough to make time to exercise – to me, it was punishment. It was something I did when I was ‘bad’, to work off a piece of cake or a glass of wine. I didn’t think about exercise in terms of the health benefits. Then three years ago, my husband Steven and I, together with another couple, decided to do the Kokoda Trail Challenge in Papua New Guinea – a 96km trek!
A big challange
Walking the Kokoda Trail was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life – and I’ve had four children! We didn’t respect the challenge and after 36 hours of non-stop walking, we came last out of hundreds of competitors. It was soul-destroying, but it was also the beginning of the new me. I realised I had to prioritise myself and make time for exercise.
The next year, we did the trail again, this time with my sister and her husband. We trained smarter, increasing our workouts each weekend over a long period of time. We shaved 10 hours off our time! In 2014, we did Kokoda for a third time and we came first in the family category. In 2015, it was time for a fresh challenge, so I decided to train for a marathon.
I had been a walker, not a runner, so committing to do a marathon was a big step. I gradually built up to running and pushed my distance a little further each time. A marathon may be a big challenge, but you have to start small – just as you do when losing weight.
In July 2015, I completed the Gold Coast Airport Marathon in four hours and 45 minutes. I realised that exercise shouldn’t be used as punishment, and I no longer link it to food. Now, I work out because it contributes to my health and my weight-loss efforts.