Since starting her 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge journey Cassie has learned how much progress can be made in one month and is here to inspire other moms to start their journey TODAY.
So much can happen in just one month
Showing just how much progress can be made in one month Cassie documented how she went from not being able to do up her jeans to them fitting like a glove, and even she was surprised that it was all in just one month.
“A lot can be achieved in just one month – take me and my goals jeans as an example.
I thought these jeans would take months to get on… it seemed like an impossible task. But it wasn’t! There are FOUR weeks between the first and last photo!
What are you waiting for?
A month from now you’ll wish you started today!”
Do you have a goal you want to reach? Cassie is here to assure you it’s not too late to begin!
“If you haven’t reached your goals yet, there is still plenty of time.”
Set your goals for the month and persist
For Cassie, goal setting is where it’s at. And she shared the goals she had for last month with us.
“This month I will be signing up for clinical pilates and aiming to walk at least 80,000 steps per week. I am also hoping to tone up my tummy.”
“I will also be working on my meal prep and filling the freezer. I work part-time and always feel so disorganized on the days I work.”
When we checked in with her at the end of the month, she didn’t quite hit those goals but she wasn’t put off, she persisted.
Saying at the end of the month, “My aims this month were to maintain my weight and tone my tummy.
“Life threw me a curve ball mid-month and injuries meant I couldn’t exercise as I wanted to.
“But rather than throwing in the towel I reassessed my goals for the month. I focused on following the meal plans, sticking to my BMR and drinking lots of water…. and I lost an extra 3 pounds.”
How awesome is that? Life can certainly get in the way of our ‘goals’ – but instead of giving up – it’s about trying something else, reassessing your mission. Such an inspiration for anyone wanting to not only lose weight but hit any goal.
So how did Cassie get here? Read her full weight loss journey below.
Where it all began for Cassie
Before she joined the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge Cassie was addicted to sweet treats sometimes eating up to three ice creams a day. When she came back from maternity leave after having her first baby, Cassie spent most days wearing baggy trousers, so she didn’t realize what size she was.
“I got all of my old work clothes out and was so upset when nothing fit. I had to go and buy new clothes in order to go back to work. I knew that something had to change, but I wasn’t sure if I had the energy to do it,” Cassie admits.
But then a friend started their Healthy Mommy journey which made Cassie curious.
“A friend of mine signed up to the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge and I was keen to join, but I wasn’t sure if I wanted to give up my daily (sometimes three a day) ice-cream habit, but I knew I couldn’t live like I was on holiday forever,” she says.
“I knew what I was eating wasn’t good for me, but I couldn’t help myself and then I’d spend the rest of the day wallowing and feeling guilty about the food I had consumed.”
Cassie reveals the ice creams she was consuming would have around 20 grams of sugar in them – that’s 60 grams of sugar per day just from snacks.
“I snacked on chocolate too, but if there was candy in the house I would eat that too,” she admits.
“Breakfast was usually some toast, a snack of chocolate or cake, lunch was a cheese sandwich, take away or pasta. Then I’d have more chocolate, some ice cream, dinner was a boring rotation of pasta and curries, my dessert would be more ice cream or I would ask my partner to go out and get me an ice cream sundae.”
Coffee and a sweet treat to soothe emotional upsets
Cassie says she would regularly go out for coffee and would always have a slice of cake.
“Whatever sweet was marked down or two for one at the supermarket would find its way into my trolley. I was an emotional eater and once I started on a binge it would be hard to stop,” she says.
“I certainly wasn’t coping well at the beginning of the year and would have outbursts. I’ve always been emotional but I was becoming angry. I didn’t like how I was feeling but didn’t really know how to pick myself up.”
Starting the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge
When Cassie first started out on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge, she found that by the end of the first week – she was hooked!
“The recipes are so easy to follow [on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge] and the food is delicious,” Cassie says.
No need to restrict what you eat
Cassie says before she felt bloated all the time and reveals that when she actually looked at the meal plans on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge she realized that nothing was off limits.
She continues: “This was a major pull for me. I could have grains – I love bread and rice. I could have dairy. Sugars weren’t made out to be the devil, but there were healthy alternatives to my favorite sugary snacks on offer.
“I cut sugar out slowly by replacing with Healthy Mommy snacks. I probably overdid the snacks in the beginning but they got me through the first month without too much hassle. Headaches and feeling light-headed on day one and two off the sugar were difficult but expected.”
But Cassie reveals that coming off sugar wasn’t as difficult as she thought it would be – and her tummy is looking noticeably flatter since cutting back on sugar.
“Knowing I could have whatever I wanted to eat within moderation, and not feel guilty about it made me not want to gorge on ice-cream every day,” she says.
“Giving myself permission to eat anything was so freeing, and soon I was cutting back on sugar and using honey and fruit to get my sweet kick.”
But then came some hurdles
However a couple of weeks into her first 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge, Cassie was informed that her son may have a rare metabolic disorder and needed further testing.
Thankfully he didn’t, but due to her son’s other medical conditions, Cassie and family attended a lot of appointments. As a result of big and no doubt stressful days driving around, Cassie found herself buying takeaway a lot more than she had planned.
“My son has a number of medical conditions and also seems to have a weak immune system. He has a shunt that drains fluid from his brain to his abdomen,” Cassie says.
After a few more weeks the medical appointments slowed down, so Cassie was able to focus on her eating habits a little more.
Some of Cassie’s favorite things about the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge
Cassie loves the snacks, as they are a great mix of treats like these Almond and Date Protein Bliss Balls, baked snacks such as the Blueberry Muffins, and she also loves anything with chocolate in there (because chocolate is not off limits!).
“The Challenges have taught me that simple is often best, so now my go-to snacks are carrot or celery sticks with hummus, boiled eggs, greek yogurt with fresh fruit, apple slices with almond butter, or dark chocolate with green tea,” says Cassie.
“My taste buds have adjusted so much that when I do have cake (because nothing is off limits) it is so sweet. I can only manage a small portion. I have even started eating vegetables that I previously disliked – like tomatoes and even Brussels sprouts!!
“I’m glad I reduced sugars slowly and without any guilt. This is a lifestyle change and I feel so much better for it.”
And Cassie says she doesn’t eat as much ice cream as she used to!
“I have cut sugars down quite slowly so have never felt as though I am missing out on anything,” she adds.
“Giving myself permission to have them when I want also means I don’t feel deprived. I actually feel empowered. It isn’t that I’m not allowed to buy ice cream now, I choose not to.”
Working on her core!
The mom-of-two admits her core, glute, and pelvic floor muscles were very weak since having a c-section in 2011 and hip surgery in 2012.
“I worked closely with a physio to learn how to use my muscles correctly, then started clinical pilates,” says Cassie.
She also learned that “I not only had a very weak core, glute, and pelvic floor muscles, but some of my joints were hyper-mobile.”
“I’ve been able to implement everything I’ve learned in the Challenge’s workouts (available in the app). I love the workouts and focus on making sure my core is switched on throughout all exercises.”
You can find lots of amazing core and tummy exercises on our 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge App under the exercise hub. We also outline how you can perform these exercises CORRECTLY, and SAFELY.
“I can’t wait to get some definition happening,” she says.
“In the beginning, my setbacks really upset me, as I thought they meant I needed to start all over again,” she adds.
But now, Cassie’s learned that setbacks are merely a lesson to be learned from.
“I have learned to focus on what I can do, rather than waste time worrying about things out of my control,” she says.
Cassie exercises daily and makes sure she completes at least a few sets of pelvic floor exercises, glute bridges, and squats.
Redefining what ‘losing’ means
Cassie says, “To me, losing something is usually an accident. When I lose something I go looking for it. But the 25 lbs I’ve lost? I’m certainly not going looking for them anytime soon!!”
How awesome is that?!
Make sure you make time for you!
The photo on the left is Cassie on holiday after she had vowed to lose weight before going away. Back then, she hadn’t.
That’s when she decided to look after herself and join the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge.
And nine and a half months later she had lost 25 lbs and that dress looks pretty roomy!
Cassie says, “Don’t be afraid to change your focus from losing weight to caring for yourself. When you make time for YOU, wonderful things can happen.”
Making your health a priority is so important.
Losing 25 lbs and gaining confidence
She says, “I knew my body wasn’t where I wanted it to be, but I was doing everything I could to embrace it.”
“This body had carried and nourished two babies and had endured a c-section and hip surgery. I was a busy mom giving everything to my family. I wanted to be body confident but it just wasn’t happening.”
Cassie has learned to find time for herself and while life still gets a bit hectic for her as a busy mom, she says she’s blossomed by finding that time.
“Time to nourish my body, time to exercise, time to get my hair and eyebrows done, time to see friends, time to meditate and time to reflect.”
“I don’t have to fake confidence anymore – it is shining out from within me.”
So would Cassie recommend having some me-time? DEFINITELY!
“It doesn’t have to be hours at a time. Start with a few minutes and take it from there. Trust me – you’ll be pleasantly surprised.”
Meal prep is now a regular part of Cassie’s life
Cassie used to throw so much food away at the end of the week as it had gone bad, but now she uses all of her groceries and is spending next to nothing on takeaway. She regularly cooks double batches of meals such as the Tuna Pasta Bake and freezes one to use on a busy night.
She also preps meals and snacks with similar ingredients, for example, she may do a day of bliss balls or a day of chicken based meals to save time and effort!
To control her portion sizes and be extra organized Cassie says, “I have an extra freezer with ready-made meals and snacks. I freeze meals in zip lock bags in individual portion sizes so they can be easily defrosted for any number of people and I wash and reuse the bags.”
“My fussy kids love the Cheesy Chicken Meatloaf (I hide grated carrot in it),” says Cassie.
Achievements throughout her journey
Reminding herself of why she first started this journey is also another way Cassie picks herself up.
“If I give this up then I just go back to where I was, unhappy, eating out of control and gaining weight,” she said.
Sticking to something for this long is a big achievement to Cassie as she says she tends to jump from interest to interest but investing time into her health has definitely paid off.
“I’m happy with my weight now, but I would love to tone and see some definition. Due to my joints, this is harder and will take me longer, but slow and steady will get me there,” Cassie says.
Cassie has come such a long way both inside and out and her happiness and health is obviously radiating so much so that her sister in law also joined The Healthy Mommy and is also having great success with the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge.
Some tips from Cassie for other moms
Her top tip for anyone on this journey
“You don’t have to go fast, you just have to go! You don’t need to do everything perfectly from day one – just pick a few small changes and keep practicing them until it becomes routine.”
For when the results aren’t coming fast enough
“Results taking longer than expected?
It has taken me 22 months to get from A to B – with a goal to lose the last few pounds, strengthen and tone.
It has taken a lot longer than I thought it would!
For me, my slow results mean I’ve taken time out for my family – missed workouts to cuddle my sick baby, going over my daily calories because the kids want ice cream, skipping meal prep for a day out with the family… and I don’t regret a single thing.
It’s so easy to want to blink and be at the end of your weight loss journey.
But I need time to slow down, not speed up!
There is so much to be learned along the way – hang in there and embrace every second of it!”
3 tips for staying on track
- “Revisit your goals for the month. If you didn’t set any goals, it is never too late to set some. Sit down and assess what is working and what isn’t.”
- “I don’t have great mirrors at home, so I head out shopping for a bit of a self-assessment in the change room. Try on clothes, see what sizes and styles look good. If nothing is looking good I use it as motivation to look after myself better for the next two weeks, then try again.”
- “Put your gym gear on when you get dressed in the morning. I’m more likely to exercise during the day if I am already dressed for it.”
Cassie pens open letter to herself to help other moms
Cassie penned an open letter to her old self about the importance of looking after herself in the hopes it would also inspire other moms who may have been struggling with their own journeys.
“After neglecting myself for too long, I now eat well, exercise regularly, I dress up for no reason, and smile and laugh more than I did before,” she says.
Cassie’s inspiring letter
“Hey, there gorgeous mama.
I see you, I have been you.. tirelessly working away, making sure everyone else in the family has clean clothes, a healthy diet, is taken to all of their appointments and activities. But at the end of the day, there is nothing left for you.
Have you ever heard of the saying ‘you can’t pour from an empty cup?’ If you don’t look after yourself, how can you look after everyone and everything else?
I hear you – there are only so many hours in the day, only so much money in the bank, but there is only one YOU.
If you fall apart, then everything else falls apart. You need to know that it isn’t selfish to put yourself first. In fact, you’ll be doing everyone a favor.
Let’s look at some of the reasons why you need to start looking out for number one:
1. Because you deserve it
If you were at work you would be getting paid. It is impossible to put a monetary figure on the work you do for your family, so why not pay yourself in the form of some self-care?
2. Little people are watching
Whether you like it or not, your kids watch everything you do. By taking time out to do the small things for yourself, you are leading by example. You want your little ones to look after themselves, so the same applies to you.
3. The whole family will benefit
Eating healthier and being more active will have huge benefits for everyone.
4. You only have one body
Research has shown time and time again that a healthy, balanced diet and moderate exercise has so many health benefits. Putting some care now may save you from needing to take time out due to illness or injury down the track.
Investing in yourself is the BEST investment you will ever make!”
Are you ready to become a Healthy Mommy?
Our Challenge is designed by moms FOR MOMS – to help them reach their goal weight and tackle their health and fitness.
The Challenge is home to customizable meal plans, 24/7 social support and realistic exercises moms can do AT HOME.
To find out more on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge click here.
*Images and references to pounds lost are as supplied by the individual in the story. The Healthy Mommy assumes information and photographs supplied to be true in nature and is not responsible for any false misrepresentations or claims relating to their programs or products.