How Julianne found the motivation she needed
hen Julianne Walker first joined Weight Watchers, people exclaimed, “But you don’t need to be here!” eir surprise was understandable. How could a former triathlete and top personal trainer – a woman who’d helped hundreds of others get into shape – be struggling with her own weight?
WBut the Sydney mum’s story shows that anyone can succumb to weight gain, and there’s no better weapon against it than vigilance.
Her problems took root three years ago, when she and her British husband Sam and their kids – born while the couple lived in Singapore – moved to Australia. Everyone struggled to adjust to a new life and country.
“It was very stressful,” Julianne recalls. “Training went on the backburner, along with everything else I did for myself, but I still ate as much and was probably drinking a little bit too much as well. e weight piled on.”
It was an ironic situation for someone who’d run a successful fitness business. She knew perfectly well what she needed to do, she says, but, “I needed to be made accountable.” When her mum, Chanel, suggested they join Weight Watchers together, Julianne agreed.
“Mum was a great support. She’d come over to my place and if I complained I’d had a bad week she’d say: ‘Let’s go for a walk and pound out your stress on the pavement.’
“We really motivated each other and actually reached Goal weight together.”
As she started feeling fitter, Julianne began weight training, employing a trainer to set programs and monitor her progress.
Seeing the kilos melting away provided even more encouragement, as well as ensuring she got the body she wanted. “I like to look strong, not skinny,” she says.
Julianne also started teaching indoor cycle classes, trained as a Pilates instructor and did boxing and circuit sessions, alternating weights with highintensity cardio.
It was the perfect combination to ensure optimum fitness, and WW helped her make sure she didn’t waiver.
“Tracking made me think twice about what I put in my mouth. I’d put the item of food into the app before I ate it and even if it only put me one point over, I wouldn’t touch it.
“I set my Fitpoints goals very high so it didn’t matter if I had my period or work wasn’t going well – that pushed me out the door.
“WW also helped me maintain. I know I’m prone to relaxing once I reach Goal weight, but having to continue attending weigh-ins was really important.”
Today Julianne has a new job as a lifestyle coordinator for an aged care facility. She’s also studying for a degree in dementia care so her time is limited. Luckily, Sam enjoys walking with her and she takes her children James, 12, and Kara, 10, cycling.
However, she says, “I only train about six hours a week now, which is about half what I’d like to do, so I try to put as much into each workout as I can.
“I love my job – it’s very rewarding, but I do wish I could spend all my time in the gym!”
JULIANNE WALKER AGE 43 HEIGHT 172cm START WEIGHT 79.9kg CURRENT WEIGHT 69.7kg WEIGHT LOST 10.2kg TIME TAKEN 15 months HOW Group coaching with Gaye at Five Dock, NSW
JULIANNE’S TOP TIP
“It’s important to find a gym you like.”
Mum Chanel and hubby Sam (top) upport Julianne all the way.