The Eating Regime That Helped This Mum Achieve Her Dream Body

Joanne Peters is walking, talking proof that it’s never too late to completely transform your body. At the age of 38, the Melbourne mum-of-two felt “uncomfortable in her own skin,” after years of neglecting to prioritise her health

She was also plagued by anxiety and depression, so at 62kg, she decided to make a change. 

“I hated feeling unfit and I knew my diet was causing problems with my skin and wasn’t helping my general health or my mood,” she told

“I was probably my harshest critic. I was sick of feeling depressed, my skin, hair and nails weren’t great and I knew I needed to clean up my diet and get fit.”

There is very little difference in scale weight between these pics but there is a visible difference due to recomposition (gaining muscle and losing fat). – I was doing zero exercise in the first pic but slimming down using quick fixes that never lasted. I was obsessed with the scales and at 163cm tall, had decided that 60kg was going to be my ‘max’ and I would never let myself get back over it. I would slim down before every holiday and aim for 57-58kg, giving myself a 2-3kg buffer zone so I could ‘enjoy’ my holiday. ?? – The result of eating well and weight training consistently is that I no longer need to keep starting a new quick fix. I have less fat and more muscle, I retain much less water, have less cellulite, everything is tighter and I much prefer my shape. My metabolism is much more efficient and I know from body composition scans that my bone mineral density has improved not to mention my strength, stamina and general state of mind. ? – I really was skinny fat on the left. While I had nowhere to hide in a bikini, I looked fine in clothes. You can definitely slim down with diet alone but you’d be CRAZY not to incorporate weight training.

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Setting up an Instagram account to track her progress, she began intermittent fasting – allowing herself just an eight-hour window to eat throughout the day. 

“It made fat loss and maintenance easy. It’s a tool, not a diet,” she explained.

“It stops me thinking about food 24/7, eliminates all the sweet cravings that are my downfall and it forces my body to use stored fat for energy.”

She stopped counting calories, opting instead to treat food as medicine and “eat as clean” as she can.

Sometimes you’ve just got to trust your gut instinct about what works best for you and after a chat with the owner/trainer at the gym I go to, I’m returning to daily intermittent fasting and am convinced I can make it work better for my goals. It’s what makes me feel my best and trying to shovel in food when I’m not hungry in the morning is a struggle and just feels wrong. This time I’ll be doing it a little differently to make sure it works efficiently for muscle gain so I’ll be taking a closer look at exactly what I eat and will have to be smart about getting everything I need in and make sure I am properly fuelled for resistance training. I’m currently having a few days of reduced food intake while I slowly ease back into training and adjust to clean eating again. Almost a bit of a detox from all the holiday food I had. M1 – eggs and rocket with lemon and Himalayan salt. M2 – pre-workout – grilled chicken tenderloins with jasmine rice and broccoli. M3 – post-workout – mocha protein shake (almond milk, 1 scoop choc protein powder, 1/2 frozen banana, 1 tsp coffee, 1 heaped tsp raw cacao, 1/2 tsp cinnamon and ice), and oats with banana. I used five grain oats this time. M4 – grilled chicken tenderloins and coleslaw with olive oil and lemon and an apple.

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But her dietary habits weren’t the only thing overhauled.

She began working out 20 minutes at a time using Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred fitness program.   

“My biggest issue was that I was very weak but it didn’t take long to see improvements,” she said.

Four years, 122,000 Instagram followers and 5kg down later, Joanne is a different person – both inside and out.

At 36 I lived a lifestyle where sometimes foods were everyday foods but thought if I went for a walk around the block after dinner, I was doing ok. ? – I was waiting for that ‘someday’ when I would get fit and healthy but at the time I wasn’t the person who made goals, chased and achieved them. – The thing is, you don’t just become that person accidentally. You can make the choice and reinvent yourself at any stage. – I fluffed around for another three years after the pic on the left and I wish I had started earlier because I have no idea what my younger body may have been able to achieve given some effort and the right nutrition. – But what I do know is that it is never too late to start and nothing beats being your best at any age. It would suck to get through life never having felt that. – I don’t plan on letting myself go again. It will always be an obstacle course as I get older and things get more difficult but health is most definitely worth fighting for. ??

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She hits the gym as often as she can and does strength training for 30-40 minutes each time. She also opts for a low-intensity walk a couple of times per week. 

“I feel great about my body especially as I’m the fittest I’ve been in my life,” she said.

“People compliment me on my progress all the time and say they feel inspired knowing it’s never too late and that you can get your body back after having children.”

Her best advice for others on the same path? “Focus on the food.”

Happy New Year everyone! ???? I’ve spent the last few days down at the beach with family and I’ve had time to reflect on how far I’ve come over the last few years and think about what I want my 2018 to look like. Health and fitness is a lifestyle for me now and the key to achieving consistency was accepting all my stuff ups and learning to get back on track as soon as possible. It’s as much a psychological battle as a physical one and letting bad days turn into bad weeks or months is what needs to be avoided. Now is the time when so many people are fully motivated by their New Year’s resolution to get fit and healthy but it’s usually only a matter of days or weeks before most resolutions get abandoned because people aim for perfection and throw in the towel the first time they fall off the wagon. I fell off it myself many times but picked myself up just as many times to the point where I now know I’ll always get back on track because I always feel much better for it. There are very few things in life we have control over but we are the ones who get to choose how we look and feel in 2018 by the goals we set and the way we treat our bodies. Feeling very excited about making 2018 my best year yet and hope you all are too. ???

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“It really is the most important factor no matter what your goals are and you need to be on top of it to make your workouts count,” she added.

“Weight training is the way to go and there are many programs to choose from which all work. Just make sure you keep pushing your body. Workouts should never become easy.”

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