Weight Loss

This mum has lost 39kg despite having spina bifida and a brain tumour

After seeing her friend’s real life transformation from using the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge, this mum knew that she wanted to try it too.

After having undergone five leg and foot reconstructions, suffering from spina bifida and a brain tumour, this mum was determined to NOT let her medical issues stop her – which is nothing short of MIRACULOUS.

She kept pushing forward and has now lost 39kg!

“I’m currently 66kg and a size 10 and without my friend I never would’ve taken the leap. I love knowing I inspire other women to start just as she did to me,” says Nikita.

Nikita Baxter

Looking forward 39kg later

Nikita was born with Spina Bifida and has suffered with many other medical issues. Spina bifida is a birth defect which occurs when there is an incomplete closing of the backbone and membranes around the spinal cord, this can often cause a fluid or tumour around the spine.

“My tumour is very large, currently measuring 13cm deep into my spinal cord.  Due to its size and depth, it’s unable to be removed without losing the function of the lower half of my body,” she says.

“I have had multiple spinal surgeries which began when I was  just two weeks old. I’ve travelled to Brisbane (eight hours away) every six weeks for 16 years.”

At the age of 15, a routine MRI found a second tumour.

“This time growing on my brain stem,” she says. “Fortunately it has not affected me too much yet, despite it’s growth. It continues to be monitored and I’m hoping a time will come for it to be removed.”

Nikita Baxter 28:11

No feeling in leg

Since birth Nikita says she has been unable to feel her left leg from my knee down.

“I also suffered with club foot. This alone has created endless battles along with many accomplishments too,” she says.

“I have had five left leg and foot reconstructions since the age of 9 to try an help the problem. I have ended up with plates and screws in my leg and each of my toes pinned and fused.

“I’ve got very little movement in my left ankle and can’t move my left toes.  However I am working hard every day to chance this.”

With all these issues, Nikita didn’t focus on her weight and reveals she didn’t like her appearance. She had no confidence and also felt unhealthy and unhappy.

“My whole life I have played the ‘I’m disabled’ card to avoid exercise. More so after spending 2 years on fertility medication to help conceive our miracle son Darcy,” she says.

“After his dramatic early entrance to this world I decided it was okay to have a big mum belly, after all I had a caesarian.”

Mum-with-spina-bifida-walks-now-runs

It wasn’t until Darcy was three months old that a specialist advised her that the extra weight she had gained during pregnancy was causing her spinal cord to split.

“This left my new little family with some tough choices. Have the surgery and risk losing control of my bowel and bladder at the age o 21, or try my hardest to change my lifestyle and see if weight loss would reduce the strain on my back,” she says.

“It was then that I realised I didn’t just need to change for me – I needed to change to be a better mum too.”

Nikita says at her biggest she tipped the scales at 105kg.

“I would cringe when I weighed myself and hated my reflection. I also hated my plus size clothes, and I hated how exhausted I was just hanging the washing out.”

Nikita’s goal weight was 75kg and a size 12, and since she is now 66kg and a size 10, its safe to say she smashed that goal!

“I’m content with my size however I would like to gain some muscle and tone tone tone! Just for my own OCD I’d like to hit a total loss of 40kg!! so 1kg to go,” Nikita says.

Due to her health issues, Nikita often feels fatigued but she has pushed forwards.

Nikita Baxter 3-11

“I pushed to hard but my left leg couldn’t keep up! It took some time but now I know what my body can withstand and how to get the most out of it. I always stay positive and motivated! I focus on my goal and push through any obstacles,” she says.

Now Nikita is feeling more confident than ever and she says her mental state has improved immensely. It’s changed her whole outlook on life.

Nikita’s latest fitness goal was to achieve one pull-up – and she did 3 just the other day! She is now all about maintaining her fitness level.

Diet changes

When it comes to diet, Nikita basically just has to buy meat and vegetables as all the staples are in the cupboard! She says, “I save so much money cutting out takeout and soft drink.”

“I prep on Tuesdays as it’s my day off work and it’s when my son’s at daycare. It’s always basic but easy meals and as my husband works away I’m all about convenience!” she says.

Some favourites to make for Nikita are Spinach and ricotta rollsSweet potato shepherd pie, and she loves the vanilla Healthy Mummy smoothie.

Consistency is Nikita’s biggest secret when it comes to weight loss.

Nikita adds, “Don’t give up because you’re sore. Don’t rely on the scales. Keep going. Consistently looking at my progress photos helps me as they always keep me accountable.”

“The Healthy Mummy changed my life. Let it change yours!”

Going Nikita on the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge and change your life.

Sugar detox Challenge

With more than 4,500 delicious (and healthy) recipes, 350 exercises & 24/7 support – the 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge is designed (and proven) to help busy mums like you lose weight!

To learn more and join the Challenge, click here!

written by:

Katie Fowler

Katie is a yoga loving writer from Sydney's northern beaches. With a flair for healthy baking you can find her scouring Instagram for the latest take on raw brownies and trolling Pinterest for interior design inspiration!