A teen who was driven to anorexia after being bullied at school has revealed her new body after turning her life around to become a fitness instructor.
Gabrielle Paice became ‘obsessed’ with her weight after being teased through her childhood and dropped to 42 kilos after low self-esteem took its toll.
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“I used to get picked on a lot for my long nose. It would make me cry a lot. I never wanted to go to school. I had such low confidence,” she says.
“I wasn’t bullied because I was fat but it drove me to lose the weight. I thought being skinny would make me seem more attractive to everyone.”
After years of disordered eating, Gabrielle is now a personal trainer and healthier than ever. Photo: Caters
Gabrielle began dramatically losing weight in 2014 and after suffering from hair loss, bad skin and being prone to pain and bruising, she visited a doctor who told her she was underweight with low blood pressure.
“Everyone kept telling me I looked ill and that I wasn’t acting like myself anymore but I wouldn’t listen to them,” she says.
“I really wanted to be thin but every time I looked at myself I thought I was fat. I would weigh myself every day and look in the mirror all the time. I would class it as anorexia.”
The teen weighed a worrying 42 kilograms at her lightest. Photo: Caters
Gabriella, 19, put herself on a restricted diet of just 2510 kilojoules and ran on a treadmill every day despite her frail frame.
“I became completely drained and had no energy,” she says. “This is when I knew I needed to make a change.”
In February 2016 Gabrielle joined a gym and swapped cardio exercise for weight lifting and began eating a healthier diet and now weighs a healthy 58 kilograms.
Friends and family were concerned by her frail appearance. Photo: Caters
“I have had a complete transformation and I actually have a social life now. I eat what I want but in moderation. I don’t deprive myself anymore,” Gabrielle explains.
“I think it’s an ongoing process and sometimes I will still be cautious about eating some things but I’m a lot better now.
“After my transformation I decided I wanted to help others and this inspired me to become a personal trainer.
Gabrielle now wants to help others who are suffering with bad body image. Photo: Caters
“I’m much more positive now. Being a personal trainer encouraged me to make a lot of friends. I feel a lot more confident in myself now.
“When I see someone struggling with their weight and I can tell that their going in the direction I went in I try to talk to them about it.
“However, when you’re in that frame of mind it’s really hard to listen to what people are saying. I just want people to love themselves.”
'''If you or anyone you know needs help, contact https://thebutterflyfoundation.org.au