It is a little heartbreaking, very inspiring and overwhelmingly honest.
A story of how a woman suffering depression chose to rise above it. How she proved that your inner health and spirit should be priority rather than how you present yourself to the world.
When we first met Rosa at a fundraiser, the thing that struck us about her was her confidence! She has a beautiful smile that lights up the room. She has a wicked sense of humour and a laugh that makes you want to laugh along even if you didn't quite hear the joke. She is incredibly generous and nurturing.
Second, we noticed how much she is so LOVED! She is adored by her immediate and extended family, by her friends and by her clients from her hairdressing business. It was extraordinary!
Thirdly, we also noticed that she shuffled when she walked, and was struggling to breathe. It was obvious that she was overweight and had a skin condition. When we embraced, we knew in our hearts that we desperately wanted to help her.
We believe that the universe is always trying to communicate with us, and we now know, that we were meant to be there that day.
Here is a little glimpse into when our two worlds collided...
I am Rosa and I am here.
This is my journey so far, from 180+kgs to health.
I was born in Australia to a big Italian family. From a very young age, I learnt that food was the key to everything. If you were sad, you fix it with food. If you were happy, you celebrate with food!
Growing up, I was always the big kid. It was only my personality that got me through. Because I always wanted everyone around me to be happy, I hid my own unhappiness. Then of course, there was the name calling. Being called Miss Piggy by most of my family... I always laughed it off.... but inside I was crying.
As I got older and became a mum, my body just kept growing. Again I was happy on the outside but never happy inside.
In my early 30s, I had 5 major operations. Two resulted in life changing challenges. Soon after, I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. This was a big blow as I was already living with a genetic skin condition from birth. Both of these diseases need a lot of medication and regular check-ups with my doctor and specialist! From there, my life became a roller coaster of highs and lows.
I never gave up on doing anything, but I was always the last to finish any race. But I did it anyway. I remember going on rides at fun parks with my kids; I would cringe thinking, "Oh no, the belt won't fit me". So I would always choose the ones where I knew I would fit into.
When I needed to use a public toilet; I would always go to a disabled one and then watch people stare at me as I left because clearly the only disability I had was my size.
I always wanted to fit in. So many times I would look like I was having just as much fun as everyone else, but inside I was dying.
When it came to nutrition, I never used to have breakfast. I would have junk at 3pm followed by a big dinner. Exercise was out of the question!
I wanted to start 2016 with a new approach. I met Ana and Jose at a fundraiser I held. I decided that day that I wanted their help to transform my body. I announced my intention to a room full of people, and looking back now, I think that was my first lesson on 'accountability'. This is something that has been one of the keys to my transformation so far. Sharing my journey with others has kept me focused.
When I received the invite to go to the fat loss seminar on "Why people fail", I knew that was my calling. I went along, and as soon as Ana started to talk, I knew this was meant for me. I went home and read 40+ pages of my Metabolic Precision manual. I woke up and cleared the fridge so I could make room for my meal preparation.
My day starts at 6am. I wake up, I have a short black coffee, I make my bed, I take a shower and then eat my 3 minute omelette. Some mornings I have the MP pear & mixed berry crumble with yoghurt. So far I have kicked most of my bad habits and have not had one piece of junk food in 14 weeks.
My lunch is usually a salad with steak or mince turkey with veggies. For dinner I would have lean meat for protein and veggies with either rice or quinoa, if it's a post workout meal. No more takeaways for me and definitely no more skipping meals. I average five to six meals a day now. Who would have thought?
Surprisingly, I have only been to the supermarket 3 times in the last 14 weeks! Not bad for someone who went every single day, and then throwing so much out after their use by date. I never waste anything now. These days, I spend less on meat, fruit & veggies in a week than I used to spend on takeaways in one weekend!
When I first started exercising with my trainers, I could not even complete one round of a 25 min session. I remember going to the toilet mid workout and cried (after I vomited!)
I was thinking "Oh my God I can't do this!" But with Ana by my side I persevered. I am proud to say that I can now do a push up on my hands and knees off the floor - a progression from my push ups off the wall. I can now RUN a few meters during class instead of shuffling. I last the entire 30 minute high intensity workout, at my own pace, and I love the feeling of my gym mates giving me a high five after each round.
My biggest supporters are my amazing husband and children. I could not have done this without their constant love and support. They encourage me to make every I.C.E workout, my MP nutrition nights, and they eat everything I prepare. They try not to bring any more 'rubbish' as I now call it, into our home.
My mindset has changed dramatically. For example, I never took photos of myself. I never looked in the mirror. I know I'm not where I want to be with my transformation yet, but I now choose to stand in front of the mirror every morning, take a photo of myself and say.....
"This is you today, tomorrow is going to be different!" I keep these photos in a scrapbook to remind me how far I've come.
For me now, MP is the only way I want to live. I love it because it is not a diet. It has never felt like a diet. It is a lifestyle that becomes your new normal. I love that I can take MP anywhere. I can even do my I.C.E workouts from my own home. This is a life changing journey that I thank god every day that I took!
Gone is the depression I once felt.
Gone are the high doses of medication.
Gone are the days of severe pain that would require hospitalisation.
Gone are the days I made excuses to not look after myself and my family.
This will be an ongoing journey for me. I have shared this with you all in the hope that it might help someone out there in my previous situation. To anyone reading this, please never ever give up! We all deserve to see the beauty of a life lived with good health and in true happiness. If I can do it, so can you.