Bride’s stunning lockdown wedding shred
It wasn't until Australia was forced into lockdown that bride-to-be Meagan Pfeiler had time to reflect and realise something in her life needed to change.
The 23-year-old dance teacher devoted so much time to her job, she often neglected herself.
It had reached a point where the passionate teacher stopped taking photos of herself because she was unhappy with what she saw.
But with her wedding creeping up in February, Ms Pfeiler said it became the ultimate motivator to "get her life back" and finally put her herself first.
"I am surrounded by mirrors all day everyday as a dance teacher, and it didn't get any easier looking into them as I gained weight," Ms Pfeiler told news.com.au
"I would physically work on myself, I was reasonably an active person and it's part of the job, but I know that the food I was consuming was not helping me in the slightest, along with limited time for 'me'," she said.
Before joining fitness program 28bySamWood and losing 8.4kg in the first eight weeks, the Melbourne dancer dauntingly counted down the days to her wedding.
"It was definitely a huge motivator," she said.
"I never once thought that I could achieve that much in eight weeks and it hasn't stopped there either.
"I'm currently 11 weeks into this program and have lost a total of 9.7kg to date."
Ms Pfeiler said her desired weight goal is 60kg but she can already see her body transforming - gaining more muscle tone and definition.
"I will be maintaining this new lifestyle all the way up to the wedding day and beyond," she told news.com.au.
The freelance performer is waiting for Victoria's restrictions to ease before going wedding dress hunting with her mother.
"I did have an idea in mind of how I wanted to look in it, and I am pretty close to it. It will be amazing if I am looking exactly how I want to look when I try it on. That'll also make the process a lot easier," she said.
Prior to her transformation journey, Ms Pfeiler weighed 76.5kg explaining that while she ate relatively healthy, it was her portion sizes and sweet tooth that let her down.
"I have realised that I certainly was not helping myself out with what I was eating," she said.
"I prepared meals that were full of the right proteins, fruits and vegetables, fats and carbohydrates, but the portion sizes were to blame.
"With such a busy lifestyle I would also retreat to cooking meals with pre-made sauces that were quick and easy to make, but loaded with sugar."
The 23-year-old said while she doesn't drink coffee or alcohol, chocolate is her biggest weakness and her cravings often took over.
"Late hours would call for take out meals, which happened more times than I'd like to admit," she said.
Ms Pfeiler had blamed her weight gain for being rejected from jobs describing it as a "horrible" experience.
"Of course there is different criteria with every casting, and it can come down to the smallest thing of having the wrong eye colour, being too tall or short, but I blamed my weight most of the time."
"I have no desire to be thin, I really don't like the stereotype. I wanted to feel better in my own skin and show off who had been in hiding for quite some time - the real me."
And that she did through "perfectly balanced meals" along with healthy snacking and regular exercise.
"I stuck to the 28 minute workouts with the 28 Program five days per week," she said, crediting the at-home fitness app for her success.
She has active recovery days on Saturday and Sunday which consisted of one day of rest and the other with either a short cardio session or pilates/yoga.
"If I choose to eat out, I check the menu prior to make sure I'm choosing the best option with my meal plan (not too high in carbohydrates)," she added.
Ms Pfeiler said she never counted calories before but if she were to guess, she probably consumed double her daily intake today.
"This is my lifestyle now and I can't wait to see what other transformations I will make in the weeks to come," she said.
"I feel fantastic, confident, fit, healthy and I love who I see staring back at me."
If you've got a transformation story you'd like to share, get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org
Originally published as Bride's stunning lockdown wedding shred