Alida Dreyer was told she was too overweight to have kids, which devastated her but also prompted her to embark on her amazing fitness journey.

Alida Dreyer’s whole world collapsed after doctors told her she was too overweight to get pregnant, but it was the wake-up call she needed the most.

“I always wanted to be a mother. When I was 23, I was trying to have a baby and was told that I would not be able to conceive at the size I was,” Dreyer, of Sydney, Australia, told The Sun.

Alida struggled with her weight for as long as she could remember, often skipping school as a child to escape the bullying she experienced.

At a young age, she received a tough diagnosis

At 13, Dreyer was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), a condition that often leads to weight gain, but looking back the now-27-year-old admits she had a food addiction.

Whilst I could blame having ‘fat genes’ from both sides of my family or PCOS from aged 13, I was still given the tools to live a lifestyle that would prevent weight gain and chose not to use them.

Alida Dreyer

During her teenage years, Alida suffered from severe depression because of her weight and this led her to self-harm.

“It was my addiction to food that lead to my weight. This addiction was fueled by a difficult relationship with my mother who reminded me I was fat and shouldn’t be eating the foods I was,” she continued.

“I felt like the only thing I could control in my life was the food I put in my mouth, so to have some control and spite others, I ate what I wanted and when I wanted. Any emotion I felt, I combatted by eating. It was a vicious cycle.”

Her eating habits were out control

At her heaviest, Alida weighed over 300 pounds and was consuming about 3,500 calories a day. 

She’d usually start her day by having four slices of toast with butter and Vegemite, along with two coffees and sugar. For lunch, she’d have two large portions of sushi with macaroni cheese and for dinner, she’d have a pizza and snack on whatever junk food she could find.

At this point, she began to notice her weight was increasingly impacting her physical and mental wellbeing.

“Imagine weighing that much and trying to squeeze into an airplane seat,” said Dreyer. “I had to ask for the belt extender and the arm rests dug so deeply into my thighs they left bruises.”

Her boyfriend dumped her

Alida started dating at 18 and got her first boyfriend when she was 20, but felt too self-conscious to be with him intimately. 

When at 23, Alida was ready to have a baby, she got the devastating news that her weight posed a significant challenge for her to conceive.

A month later, her relationship fell apart and came to an end, and Alida hit rock bottom. She knew it was time for her to change her life around and prioritize her health.

I was stripped to the absolute core and forced to take a look at myself. From that day on I decided I had to learn to love myself.

Alida Dreyer

She decided to love herself against all odds

Determined to succeed, she was able to lose 88 pounds through a combination of diet and exercise. Then, she dropped an additional 82 pounds following a vertical sleeve gastrectomy surgery (VSG), for a total loss of 170 pounds in just a year.

For Alida, this turned out to be only half the battle because following her weight loss, she was left to deal with excess skin that hung low, ripped and became infected.

“My breasts went from a 22JJ to a 10E, of which was all loose skin. My stomach hung so low that it came out of the bottom of my undies,” she remembered.

“My thigh skin was so bad I couldn’t wear pants because the skin got caught when I walked which made it rip. It made exercise impossible.”

She has had to have three skin removal operations to address the problem.

Self-confidence is for life

By putting herself first and learning to love herself, Alida discovered her self- worth and is proud of how far she’s come.

I am strong, I am confident, and I am worthy. I believe that I’m worthy to live a life that I want to live, a life that I am proud of.

Alida Dreyer

“When I look into the mirror now, I smile. I love each of my scars, they tell a different story of strength and of overcoming my demons.”

Now, she wants to inspire others

Alida has taken to social media to share her story in the spirit of helping others.

“I have chosen to openly share my non-filtered life through Instagram which isn’t always easy, but I do it in hopes to even just help one person who is in the same place I was a few years ago,” she said.

I thrive through helping other young people make positive steps in their life.

It’s never too late to transform yourself, however difficult the obstacles can appear. At times, our goals–whatever they may be–can seem so out of reach that we convince ourselves we should accept our current condition in life.

As Alida’s story proves, obstacles exist for a reason: to be overcome.

More inspiring transformations: