‘I don’t swim with shorts over my swimsuit anymore’: Woman drops 5st without strict diet

Slimming World member discusses her seven-stone weight loss

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Weight loss is something many people struggle with, and without the motivation, only a few succeed at it. Julie, who struggled with her weight and mental health for years, managed to lose over five stone following a fitness routine she “fell in love with”. How did she do it?

Julie explained: “In 2017, my husband and I were trying to get pregnant with our second child.

“During that year, we experienced two miscarriages and my mom also passed away. It was a really tough year and it took a toll on my overall physical and mental health.

“When we went to our doctor’s appointment to confirm the second miscarriage and to discuss options I was so fearful that my doctor was going to say that I needed to lose weight to sustain a healthy pregnancy,” she said.

“To be honest I do not remember a lot of that conversation at the doctor’s office but I do remember leaving the doctor’s office that day. 

“I said goodbye to my husband as he went to work and I sat in the parking lot determined to take my health back.

“In a time that felt very uncontrollable, my health was the one thing that I could control. Sitting in the parking lot I joined Weight Watchers right then and there and made a change not only for me but for my future family,” Julie admitted.

“I was able to lose two and a half stone during our infertility journey. We were able to get pregnant and my husband and I welcomed our daughter in September 2018.

“Weight Watchers have a program for nursing moms and I started there. For the first year I only focused on nutrition. I learned more about portion control and also how to make healthier options of the things I loved,” Julie explained.

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A post shared by Julie Hollister������ (@mexijewlicious)

“My goal was to lose the three and a half stone I gained when I was pregnant. I met that goal 11 months postpartum. I decided to keep going and started incorporating fitness.”

Julie explained she found herself loving a new fitness routine which was “key” not only for her weight loss journey but also for her mental health.

“I began with group exercise classes at the YMCA and when the pandemic hit I joined the Les Mills on Demand community. I learned over the pandemic that movement and working out was key to my mental health.

“I found a love for early morning workouts as this was my time alone before my family woke up to set my day off right and to provide myself with the self care I needed.

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A post shared by Julie Hollister������ (@mexijewlicious)

“This past August I added to my at home gym a Peloton Bike and have since joined the Peloton community and I absolutely love it. It took my two years to lose five and a half stone and to reach my second goal and I have maintained that weight loss over this past year.”

Julie admitted her life has completely changed: “I feel so great.”

“For so many years I was always trying to balance all the things, but what I didn’t realise was that I wasn’t including my health and well-being in all the things.

“So much of my life has changed. I now focus on an overall health journey and not just weight loss. I have learned so much about the mindset and how we can become out biggest barrier or biggest opportunity for growth.

“I have found a community of support, I am an active mom, wife and friend now. I now say, ‘Yes,’ to life instead of being a person on the sidelines.

“It’s crazy because I thought that by losing weight I would automatically feel confident but there is still work to be done internally. For me I had to give myself permission to not hide behind my clothes anymore, to buy clothes that fit my body and try styles that I typically would never go for.

“With work both on the inside and outside I now do not swim with shorts over my swimsuit anymore, I show my kids that I can be brave and try new things like jumping off high rocks into the lake so they can gain confidence in themselves.

“With having more confidence in myself I finally am able to see the things in myself that my husband, family and friends have always seen, which is the biggest change and compliment I can give myself,” Julie explained.

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