“The Life! program really worked for me. Just by being committed to achieving a series of small goals, I got the results I wanted – I’ve lost 12kg, not by going on a diet but by integrating a whole new lifestyle that now feels natural and normal to me."
Diana led a very active life until she received a shock diagnosis.
“Up until 2009, I’d been very keen on keeping fit. I regularly did gym workouts, cycling, BODYPUMP™ and RPM™ classes. I’d been experiencing pain for some time, though, and then one day in a class I was in so much pain that I broke down and couldn’t continue. My GP ran some tests and I was shocked to learn that I had severe arthritis in my left hip and was looking at having a hip replacement.
“Being unable to exercise was devastating to me and I went through a very negative phase. My weight rocketed up to 82kg, and my GP put me through the AUSDRISK test, which showed that I was at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes. I didn’t want to experience another blow to my health, so I told my GP I was up for anything that might help me – that’s how I was referred to the Life! program.
“At first, I was daunted. Looking at the course book, there seemed to be a lot of material to take on board, but my Life! coach emphasised that we were going to concentrate on taking small steps. From the word go, he encouraged the group to set achievable goals and stick them on the fridge door.
“The Life! program really worked for me. Just by being committed to achieving a series of small goals, I got the results I wanted – I’ve lost 12kg, not by going on a diet but by integrating a whole new lifestyle that now feels natural and normal to me. I’ve learnt a lot... and I’ve even cured my phobia of salads by becoming aware that they don’t have to consist of a withered bit of lettuce marooned a plate! Being on the program taught me to be open-minded about things – even salads!”
Diana has gained more than techniques for improving her physical health from the program. “The real gift of the Life! program has been a psychological one. It’s left me feeling so much more positive. I’m still battling arthritis, but my coping skills have been hugely enhanced, and these days I’m doing two circuit classes a week, plus weights and cardio.
“And that course book that I once found so daunting I now regard as a reference book that I’ll use for the rest of my life.
“What Life! has taught me, and what I’d like to emphasise to anyone who’s in pain or feeling negative, is that you should never give up and you should always do the best for yourself. The Life! program is a fantastic vehicle for doing that.”