Busy mother-of-three, Adele Fiene adopted the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet and saw incredible results in just five months. Here’s how she did it.
From a young age, Adele Fiene pursued an active lifestyle. Up until her 30th birthday, she claims she “was extremely active, playing several sports a week, running regularly and getting plenty of sleep.”
This healthy lifestyle took a turn when the pressures of motherhood mounted.
“However, once I hit 30 weight gain became an issue for me. At the time I had my first child, my physical activity reduced and food was always on the run where I would make poor choices,” she said.
The former fitness lover began to develop unhealthy eating habits. She aid, “Takeaway was my go-to, especially for lunch. I enjoyed pizza, Chinese, pasta and curries. Breakfast was limited, maybe some toast if I had time and dinner was always large portions of pasta or a stir fry with lots of rice and a few glasses of wine.”
Like what you see? Sign up to our bodyandsoul.com.au newsletter for more stories like this.
Adele didn’t allow her body to enjoy treats in moderation, and instead, she was indulging on a regular period.
“I really love baking and cooking with my children on the weekend. However, prior to losing the weight, we were making muffins, cupcakes, cookies and other sweet treats, and we never missed out on licking the bowl!”
To make matters worse, an injury during netball season halted her ability to workout and she slowly became sedentary.
“Exercise-wise, I played netball until I dislocated my knee. Since I stopped playing sport and running the weight crept on.”
Prior to her most recent pregnancy, Adele “was eating out all the time,” which further prompted her weight gain.
She added: “I’m on the road a lot of the time with my work and with three small children, I really wouldn’t get time for breakfast, I would drink a lot of coffee and lunch was normally takeaway food. I would snack with biscuits and cake regularly and the weight crept on.”
The mother-of-three’s wake up call came after having her last baby.
“During my last pregnancy, I decided that I wanted to go back to work and fit comfortably in my new uniform at a size 14. Prior to the pregnancy, I was considering ordering a size 16 in the work uniform as the 14 was tight!”
Following this realisation, she was determined to size down. By adopting the following diet, she went from her heaviest weight of 86.6kg to 66.6kg – her current weight.
She now reaps the benefits of her incredible transformation.
“My clothes fit so much better, I feel better and I’m much more active with my kids. Everyone noticed the drop in weight and I feel so much more confident within myself. My skin is a lot better too, I used to suffer from eczema but this has all gone.”
Changing her previous dietary habits
After giving birth, Adele was motivated to make the most of parental leave away from work. During her research, she came across the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet (if you want a quick overview of the diet, read this).
Adele said the CSIRO Total Wellbeing Diet diet was ideal for her because “it felt like it was easy to follow with lots of support and I loved that you could have indulgences and still lose weight.”
The exercise plan offered by the program was also suitable for her knee injury. She claims it resembled “what I was doing with my physio and it suited my injury well.”
“Plus the enticement of getting a full refund spurred me on too!”
By following the meal plan suggested by the program, Adele bid goodbye to her unsustainable overeating habits.
At first, she began making gradual changes. “I started off with making smaller healthier choices such as reducing my alcohol intake, drinking lots of water and opting for better snack options. Having the indulgences offered by the program was something I really looked forward to as a little reward for my hard work.”
To ensure she was consuming more nutritious meals, she put time aside for organising recipes.
“I also got into better meal planning and prepping habits. I followed the meal plan offered by the program and would spend Sunday grocery shopping and then meal prepping for the week, then left the rest of the week for me and ensured I stayed on track.”
As a result of the CSIRO diet, the mum-of-three has lost an impressive 20kgs in just five months.
She added, “You can eat tasty food, and a lot of it, and still lose weight. You just have to look at portion sizes and protein levels. I eat for enjoyment but to also look after myself and make sure it has all the right nutrients to thrive.”
Here’s what a day on a plate looks like for Adele
Breakfast: Ricotta cheese on high protein bread, tinned peaches, sprinkle of cinnamon and a skim latte.
Lunch: Tuna Nicoise salad and a high protein yoghurt with berries.
Dinner: Soy baked salmon with snow pea salad.
Snacks: Veggie sticks, diet jelly or air popped popcorn.
Her current exercise routine
Due to her knee injury, Adele has to be cautious when engaging in physical activity.
“Exercise is difficult with my knee, but I do have a care plan with a physio that I exercise to and I make sure I try to walk everywhere,” she explained.
But in saying that, she is keeping active.
“ I go to the gym three times a week for 40 minutes a time and I try to walk my 10,000 steps daily. When I get home I play with the kids outside to get extra exercise. It all helps!”
Her advice to others
Similar to a lot of people, Adele experienced challenges on the way to her transformation.
“I work away a lot and I entertain clients and friends frequently so managing to still keep to the plan was a challenge especially when I wasn’t cooking/preparing meals myself.”
She overcame this by tracking what she was eating, watching her portions and getting “straight back on track if I had a day where I went off plan”.
Now, she has some words of wisdom for others trying to lose weight.
“Set a realistic goal and a reason “why” you are trying to lose weight. For me it was having a picture of my little girl up at my desk to remind me how important it was to stay healthy for her,” she recommends.
Tracking her progress was a big motivation for her. So do the same, Adele suggests.
“I found that taking pictures of my weight loss and logging my weight each week also helped and kept me motivated and accountable. I used to look forward to weighing in at the end of the day as even a loss of 300g is a loss of a whole tub of butter. ”
Adele was lucky to have “extremely supportive” family and friends through her weight loss journey, but she encourages others to reach out to like minded people in their communities.
“I joined the program’s Facebook community and they really inspired me and propped me up if I was having a bad week.”
“Dieting can be an isolating experience so it’s important to have a good support network.”