When Paramjeet (27), a nurse from India arrived in Australia last Christmas she was 6 dress sizes larger and completely lacking in confidence. Today, almost exactly 12 months on, she’s the healthiest and fittest she’s ever been and full of pride. Her phone is bursting with gorgeous photos of her and her husband, a big radiant smile on her face in each one.

“One of my husband’s friends saw me recently after not seeing me for 8 months and he didn’t recognise me. He said to my husband, “Oh my goodness, look at your wife!”; it feels really nice when people notice my hard work, and my husband is obviously very proud of me” Paramjeet told us when we sat down with her at Oakleigh Pinnacle recently.

Paramjeet started her lifestyle transformation by making small changes. She started exploring the local area on foot, going for 30minute walks and eventually working her way up to a run.

“I saw people running in the mornings and evenings and so I just started doing whatever was in my limit – I used to run past Pinnacle Oakleigh and see the people cycling upstairs and I wanted to join them. On the 19th May this year, I did just that! I walked in and signed up on the spot. Now it’s my home away from home and I can’t imagine not being a member of this fun and supportive gym.”

Paramjeet’s weight loss is her greatest motivator.

“When you start feeling lighter and more comfortable in your own skin, you want to spend more time in the gym. I feel so good it’s actually hard to put it in to words. Now when I go shopping, the dresses fit and I have options. I feel happy in my clothes, although lots of things are so loose now. Even the shirt I’m wearing today used to be skin tight! (nb: the t-shirt Parmjeet was wearing was hanging off her!)

Having lost an amazing 20kgs since the start of her journey, it was the recent 12 Week Challenge that gave Paramjeet an added boost and helped her through a plateau.

“The 12 Week Challenge coaches taught me about the benefits of specific exercises and how to tailor them to get the most out of my workouts. I also learnt how to focus on specific areas of my body and was inspired by all the women who were lifting strong weights. I’m now focusing less on weight loss and more on getting stronger, although they both seem to go hand in hand.”

Paramjeet’s advice for people like her that want to make a positive lifestyle change is simple – Start small.

In the gym, start with 15 minutes on a machine you like such as the elliptical trainer. Outside of the gym, make small diet changes like no fast food or cutting down on sugar. Once you start losing weight or feeling fitter, this will be all the motivation you need. And also, talk to the coaches at Pinnacle. They’re very educated and can advise you on anything health and fitness related, plus they really help you push your limits!

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