Most people struggle to lose weight. They may embark on some programs for a short time and stop when they see there is no result. Or they may be successful in losing some pounds only to put it all back again.

Not for Hafsah Binte Abdullah. Hafsah comes from a family of 6 and everyone is overweight. She was quite big when she was 12.  When the school nurse advised her to lose weight, the only way she knew how was to control her diet by skipping meals. When she was in high school, she starting running a few times a week. Right up to University, she continued to be active and was able to maintain her weight at 55kg.

When Hafsah got married and had 4 kids, her weight went up and down with each pregnancy. After childbirth, she resumed running and cut down on her food, but it did not help to bring her weight down to the target.

After the birth of her fourth child, she experience numbness sensation on her face and slurring of speech. It seemed like a stroke but medical examination did not show anything. That got her worried. Hafsah also attended my health talk and took a measurement of her body composition. The result showed she had body fat that was 5% above the normal target and her body age was 15 years older. That was the moment of awakening. Hafsah made up her mind to change her lifestyle.

The first thing Hafsah did was to change her diet. The usual diet of ethnic Malay is white rice, white bread, biscuits and lots of coconut gravy laden vegetables and meat dishes. She now eats more complex carbohydrate such as sweet potato, grilled or baked chicken, no fried food. She avoided fast food and also has bigger portions of vegetables and salads. Hafsah brings home cooked food for lunch and dines out less.

Her new lifestyle also includes running longer distance; from 5km to 20km. She started taking part in event races such as the Standard Chartered Marathon race and she managed to complete her first marathon run in December 2013. Her husband and her children were inspired by her running that they also become more active and took up cycling and swimming.

Her effort has paid off. In January 2012, her measurement was 70kg body weight, 35% body fat, 51 years old body age and BMI 27.4. By January 2014, her measurement is 60kg body weight, 30% body fat, 44 years old body age and BMI 23.

Determination, perseverance, embracing a new lifestyle and family involvement is the key to Hafsah’s success in losing weight and body fat for good. She is now living a healthy lifestyle that can sustain her to the rest of her life.

Do you have a lifestyle that can support your weight loss target? Share with me in the comment box below.

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