Meet Abby Maxwell-Bowen: 12WC Lean Machine Winner
The Lean Machine was awarded to two women who did not need to lose a lot of weight, but chose to do the 12 Week Challenge to improve their body fat percentage and fitness.
Name: Abby Maxwell-Bowen
Club: Adelaide City, South Australia
Winner: Lean Machine
Weight lost: 7.5kg
% total body weight lost: 10.69%
Prize: $2500 G Adventures voucher + $2000 cash from Natvia
On what she was hoping to achieve during the challenge...
Marriage to Johnny Depp! No, just kidding. I hoped to lose some kilos, centimetres and unhelpful mindsets, and gain some guns, abs and healthier habits. I was about to undergo an IVF cycle and wanted something completely unrelated to that to focus on, something that was positive and would keep me sane, keep me from giving up or falling back into depression. I was at the point in my life when I thought: “There is no better time than right now to be the best version of you that you can be. Your best years are still ahead of you.”
On high points and challenging times...
I struggled with food! As a greedy vegetarian with commitment issues to the stove and kitchen in general, the menu plans suggested were very difficult. At the start I felt like the very hungry caterpillar – always on the lookout for the next eat! But I had a great food coach who came up with lots of high-protein, vegetarian-friendly alternatives.
Seeing improvements in the repeat fitness tests was amazing. There’s no better feeling than when you ask your body to do things it struggled with previously and seeing it slowly improve. Nothing beats turning “I couldn’t” into “I damn well can!”
I have a bit now! I try very hard to keep positive and focus on the future rather than dwell on the fails. It’s really easy to give up on yourself and feel hopeless. The mind is like any other muscle in your body: you have to train it and keep at it, and if you don’t use it, you lose it. My brain was given a thorough workout during the challenge, as well as my body.
Abby's top tip for success
“It’s okay if you find it hard – if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you. Be the best version of you, not a second-rate version of anyone else.”