4 Weeks To Target

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 After 10 years of being overweight, Laura Burns decided to finally give her body a break. She’s now only four weeks away from her goal…


Name: Laura Burns
Age:  28
Home: Dubai
Height:  179cm
Was: 107.5kg
Now: 84kg
Target: 79kg

“In 2002 in my final year of high school I gained 27kg, taking my weight up to 87kg.  I stopped going to gym and I worked for a pizza place. My parents divorced and my mom was working away, so I was home on my own every week. I ate whatever I wanted – chocolate, pizza, brownies… I indulged my every whim.
I started seeing the signs of my weight gain, but I was in denial. I remember putting on my stretchy jeans, finding they were tight and wanting to believe the tumble drier had shrunken them.
When I finished school, I tried a few different diets, but after losing weight, the kg soon started to creep back on. The more I yo-yoed, the more despondent I became.
My bad habits continued into adulthood. I never had just a coffee – it was always a croissant and coffee. Even when I was watching my favourite show The Biggest Loser, I would always have pizza and chocolate beside me.
I fell in love, got married, and had a son. And our family’s bliss only increased when a year later I found out I was pregnant with twins. But I was soon dealt a devastating blow as I lost one of my girls.  This was the worst time of my life and I sunk into deep depression and grieved. My husband had to be away for work and I had no help. I was drained emotionally and physically. I felt trapped in my body. My children were the only reason I would have to face the day.  It was for them I thought I had to make the change.
I began seeing posts on Facebook about a health and fitness support group called GloryGirls (www.glorygirlfitness.com) and someone I knew did the programme. I signed up, but at this time I decided that I needed to return home, take care of my depression and have some support for my children. After five months in South Africa I returned to Dubai, and re-joined GloryGirls in January 2012.  Even though my weight was at its highest, emotionally I was in a much better place.


“Thanks to trying the programme before I knew what I had to eat, so I made the dishes I really enjoyed. This helped spur me along and within a month I’d lost almost 10kg – I was delighted. What surprised me the most was the amount I was eating. I’d never eaten this amount of food before. But instead of pizza and chocolate, I was enjoying lean protein, complex carbohydrates and veggies.
I found it trickier trying to sort out my workouts. Initially, I had many set back and couldn’t work out the way I was supposed to, but I focused on my eating and I was seeing really pleasing results. So to make sure I exercised, I set myself some targets. I signed up for the Ladies 5km in November – which was huge for me, as I never expected to do anything like this, I then ran the Dubai Marathon 10km leg in January and joined the Swim Around The Burj Al Arab in February.


“I’m now only four weeks away from target and I am excited. I appreciate all the support from my family and friends, and I am so thankful to Nadine from GloryGirls for believing in me.  This weight-loss journey has been a marathon and not a sprint, but this is the way that I plan to live for the rest of my life. I’ve got to buckle down to hit target. Although the changes I’ve already seen are huge. The whole family is living a healthier lifestyle and the kids love exercise time!”


Laura and her coach Nadine Du Toit.

Next week: A hectic week means that Laura’s stamina will be put to the test.


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