Melbourne-based Heidi Smith has had a life-long battle on the scales. By the time her weight ballooned to more than 160kg in her first pregnancy she had stopped weighing herself to avoid acknowledging just how bad the situation had gotten.
But when the photos came back from her daughter's first birthday party, there was no more denying that she was bigger than she had ever been. It was then that Heidi began the weight loss journeythat would see her drop more than half her body size using an affordable, simple and "non-humiliating" body scanner that kept her accountable along the way.
"I wish I could blame my weight gain on the kids," laughs Heidi. "But the truth is I have battled weight my whole life."
By the age of five, Heidi's mum had her seeing a dietician to get her weight under control, but still Heidi remained heavier than her classmates.
"When I hit high school I was morbidly obese, but through it all I remained active and I think that helped me deny what was really going on," Heidi tells Now to Love. "In reality I just thought I was active in my head. Because I was doing things like colour runs and other challenges I'd joke that I was the world's fittest fat person."
Heidi went into her first pregnancy at her normal pre-baby weight which fluctuated between 120 and 130kgs, but by the time she was 32 weeks into her pregnancy she tipped the scales at 164kg.
"I had everything wrong with me that pregnancy," confesses Heidi. "I was unfit, it was an unhealthy pregnancy and I had gestational diabetes, high blood pressure, carpal tunnel … the works."
Despite dropping 10 kilograms quickly after the birth, Heidi's weight continued to fluctuate.
"I was bullied quite badly by family members and friends every time I tried to lose weight, so I didn't really commit and just kind of stayed where I was at."
But when photographs from her daughter Isabella's first birthday came back, Heidi was faced with a huge reality check.
"My cheeks were so huge you could not see my eyes, I had these big bear paw hands and here was boobs on top of boobs on top of boobs," laughs Heidi.
Around the same time, Heidi's aunt, who also battled with her weight, lost her life to a heart attack.
"Those two things were the catalyst," says Heidi. "I thought if I continue on like this the same thing will happen to me."
Heidi tried everything, all of the celebrity challenges that seemed to be working for other people did nothing for her.
"I knew I had to keep going, and not give up," says Heidi.
"I eventually found the TIFFXO programme which worked for me, I liked the exercises and I like the holistic approach of it all and I managed to get my weight down to 88kg over time.
"During the weight loss journey I kept hearing people in the groups I was in talking about MPORT 3D Body Scanning for accountability and measuring and they were all singing it's praises. It sounded great."
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The MPORT ethos regarding health and wellness is to help people track their progress through their fitness journey in the most accurate way possible.
By encouraging people to step away from the traditional bathroom scales as this could get misleading, MPORT users can scan themselves in a pod (usually located in shopping centres) and a comprehensive Health Report gets sent to the user's app, which includes a detailed breakdown of their health status, including a unique 3D body avatar, body fat composition, muscle mass, what kind of body type they are, suggestions for nutrition and exercise for optimal performance and more.
By the time Heidi found a local pod she was 11 weeks into her second pregnancy and terrified of the weight piling on like it did in her first pregnancy.
"I knew that the infrared technology was safe to use in pregnancy, and I thought this might be the way to keep my weight under control without using scales," says Heidi.
"I loved that I could just jump in a pod on my own, instead of stripping off in front of a trainer at the gym which can be humiliating."
Every Tuesday throughout the duration of her pregnancy, she hopped in a pod for an accurate reading of exactly where she was at in terms of weight gain and health.
"I managed to only gain 7.5 kilograms the second time around. My blood pressure was fine, there was no gestational diabetes or anything like that - it was a completely different experience to the first time around."
Because the body scanners are 100 per cent safe and easy to use throughout pregnancy she was able to keep her weight safely in check, by self-monitoring and sticking to to a healthy diet and at-home workout guides.
"If I saw the weight creeping up in certain areas I could reflect back on what I had been doing the past week and make changes to make sure I stayed on track."
"I love that the scans get sent to the app on my phone because I'm able to look back at where I was a week, month or even year ago."
And the best part for Heidi is the price. For less than $50 a year you get unlimited scans that show body measurements like weight, height, biceps, chest, narrow waist, hips, thighs, calves, knees, shoulders and neck plus health measurements like BMI, target heart rate, waist/height ratio, waist/hip ratio, body fat percentage, fat free mass, BMR & ideal weight range.
"I'm never going back to where I was before," says Heidi. "The scans are a game changer for me."