By Josh Saunders
A massive mum who feared being ‘fat at forty’ has lost five stone after being fat shamed by her son.
Jeanine McDonald, 39, from Limerick in Pennsylvania, USA, weighed 15 stone (208lb) when seven-year-old Chase declared she was ‘really fat.’
She piled on the pounds during pregnancies and after having her fourth child, three years ago, she struggled to slim down.
But her son’s comment was the wake-up call she needed to quit her junk food diet of chicken nuggets, cheeseburgers and pizza, in favour of making healthy options last year.
She also started exercising six times a week and, a year on, she’s lost an impressive five stone (80lb).
Now, her children regularly tell her she looks ‘incredible’ and are proud of her massive mummy to yummy mummy transformation.
Jeanine, an events designer, said: “I once asked my kids do you think mommy is skinny or fat and Chase told me I was ‘really fat’ – that’s when I knew I had to lose weight and change my lifestyle.
“He obviously didn’t realise what he was saying would be hurtful, he was just being honest.
“But hearing that I was ‘really fat’ from my son motivated me into action, I knew I couldn’t keep making poor life choices.
“I knew I was overweight but didn’t realise it had gotten that bad, it was definitely the wake-up call I needed to get healthy.
“I gained a lot of weight from pregnancy but also made a lot of bad food choices.
“I lacked energy so I was cooking pizza, chicken nuggets and hotdogs, rather than making something healthy for myself, I ate whatever I made for the kids.
“I changed my eating habits and started working out, now I feel incredible.
“My body is massively different. I’m really toned up now and have muscle definition like I didn’t have before.
“Now my kids are so impressed with my results they say, ‘Wow look at mum’ and tell me that I look great all the time, they’re always saying ‘Show me your muscles mom.
“Their kind words keep me motivated even more, now I’m proud of how I look and want them to continue being proud of me.”
At her heaviest Jeanine was classified as obese due to having a body mass index over 35 – a healthy range is between 18.5 and 25.
She had high blood pressure and struggled to keep up with her kids, even getting out of breath walking up the stairs.
Jeanine said: “I was in bad shape and couldn’t keep up with my kids, I was tired all of the time and didn’t feel confident in myself, my self-esteem was at an all time low.
“I knew I didn’t want to go in to my 40s feeling the way I did and had to lose weight.”
Determined to beat the bulk before her 40th birthday, she changed her diet and started exercising.
Jeanine added: “Before I would eat what I made for the kids, but I changed my diet to eat more healthily and clean, with a lot more protein and protein shakes follow workouts.
“I drink a tonne of water and my blood pressure is perfect now, I didn’t really have any energy before, and having four boys, three with autism, it was really hard to keep up with them.”
After the comments from her son, Jeanine turned her life around and now weighs a slender 9st 5 (131lb).
She now believes she’s motivating her four kids, Aidan, 9, Chase, 7, Liam, 5, and Keegan, 3, to make healthy lifestyle choices too.
Jeanine said: “Before I just felt very sloppy and out of shape, now I feel amazing, I’m still toning up but I feel like a different woman, top to bottom.
“Plus, my kids are so proud of me now that it’s great, I worked really hard to get where I am.
“I’m setting a good example to them, before my children would want ice cream or Doritos but now they want apples and healthier options.”
Jeanine hopes to inspire others through her fitness pages Living Fit at 40, which gives motivation, healthy recipes and encouragement online.
Breakfast – pancakes or waffles
Lunch – chicken nuggets, cheeseburger or pizza
Dinner – chicken cutlets with mash potatoes or a vegetable
Dessert – ice cream with the kids
Breakfast – three egg whites and spinach
Snack – apple and a banana
Lunch – salad with grilled chicken
Snack – grilled chicken piece with vegetable
Dinner – protein vegetable and small red potato
Desserts – rice cake with organic peanut butter