A woman was told that she wouldn’t live past 35 by her doctor if she didn’t significantly change her routine.
Elena Goodall, 29, weighed 184 kilos and had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and severe sleep apnea, which is when her turning point came.
‘In 2015 I had a check up and my doctor asked if I knew how much I weighed – I didn’t want to know. I knew I was heavy but I didn’t weigh myself,’ Ms Goodall told Daily Mail Australia. ‘The scale said ‘error’ when I hopped on it because I was too heavy, I had to go on an industrial scale’.
Ms Goodall, who is documenting her journey on her Facebook page Elle’s Journey To Good Health, said that she was shocked because she didn’t realise how bad things had gotten.
On her Facebook page she describes herself on her page as a ‘typical ‘girly’ girl with ‘huge ambition’ whose life has just gone through ‘one of the biggest and best changes ever’.
‘I couldn’t do much; I couldn’t even tie my own shoes, or sit on the ground because it was impossible to get up,’ she wrote of her life before her transformation.
‘I hadn’t always been this way. I used to be a competitive swimmer at a high level and quite fit. I think what happened was, I just got comfortable and it stacked on.
‘I found that just one night a week of takeaway turned into 2, then 3, then before you knew it, it was every night (and it wasn’t just one large meal either)’
‘Now I had tried everything to lose weight, but I truly had no motivation AT ALL! My motivation would last (at max) a month, but I was addicted to fast food and I just couldn’t stop. I don’t know what it was, it was like a drug – It was bad,’ [sic] she wrote.
But it was after that visit to her doctor in May 2015 that she knew she had to change.
‘My doctor had mentioned surgery to me before, but I’m that much of a sook, that I didn’t want to go to that extreme,’ Ms Goodall wrote on Facebook. ‘But time passed, my weight issue got worse and worse and I hit rock bottom.’
‘Things rolled down the hill from there. They even tried to take my driving licence off of me because of the sleep apnoea,’ she said.
‘My oxygen levels in my blood had dropped dangerously and they were worried I would fall asleep at the wheel’.
She opted a gastric sleeve surgery finally.
‘It was the final chance to save my life,’ she said.
Over a year and a half Ms Goodall lost roughly 115 kilos, which brought her 184 kilo frame down to 69 kilos.
‘I had the weight loss surgery in November 2015 and afterwards met a woman who also had it but hadn’t changed her lifestyle.
‘She was still eating take away and not exercising and even though she lost weight she gained it back again,’ she said.
‘After I spoke with her I said “no that’s not going be me” so I took up triathlons and started training incredibly hard’.
This is what led her to stop thinking about her goal of 85 kilos and focused on being fit, healthy and strong.
‘The weight loss happened with the training and diet is a huge part of it too. I cut take away food from my diet and prepared my own at home meals,’ she said.
On Sunday, Ms Goodall completed an Ironman 70.3 challenge, which is half that of a regular Ironman Triathlon and involves a two kilometre swim, 90 kilometre bike ride and 21.1 kilometre run.
‘I’m still losing weight but I have an incredible training schedule. I have an Ironman 70.3 then a full Ironman in December. Training is hectic and with that will come weight loss,’ she said.
The full Ironman is made up of a swim that is just under four kilometres, a 180 kilometre bike ride and a 42.2 kilometre run.
‘I’m speaking closely with my dietitian and nutritionist as I don’t want to lose too much more weight. I still need some fat on me so that’s a bit of a challenge,’ Ms Goodall said.
She wants to continue participating in Ironman triathlons and one day hopes to get a Kona qualifying spot for the Ironman world championship in Hawaii.
‘I’m going to back off after the full Ironman I do later this year. I’m not focusing on my time this time around but I want to prove to myself that I can actually do it. After that I want to continue to build up my endurance doing 70.3s,’ she explained.
‘I wanted people to know what the journey is like, the good and the bad. I wanted to share my story and to keep myself accountable’.