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Q & A: 19kgs down for working mom, Denise


Denise Bothma Schnetler




Bronkhorstspruit Gauteng

How much weight have you lost on your journey so far?

Starting weight – 123kgs
Current weight – 104kgs

What do you do? (Job)


What else do you do? [Hobbies, non-work stuff, etc)

We love camping and traveling. Painting just for fun with our small kids ages 12 and 8.


How long have you been a member of Sleekgeek?

I think about four years.

How did you find Sleekgeek?

Charlene Opperman, she is a friend and I saw how amazing she was doing on her journey.

What is your favourite part of the Sleekgeek Community?

The support, the focus is not on how much you weigh but rather how they can help you lose the weight.


Describe the “old you” before you made your transformation. How did you get there and what were you like?

I went into depression. I felt ashamed and I didn’t like myself, food was my comfort zone. I did not even want to go out of the house or visit any family or friends .

What ignited your initial motivation to change?

My kids and my health, and the fact that where ever I go I was the biggest one.

What are some of the things that the new you does differently now?

I am more social and not scared anymore to go out. Even though I still want to lose more weight.

What are some of the things that the new you still struggles with?

Social events, this is when I fall of the the wagon. I also struggle to eat healthy in the winter, I want hot, calorie dense, comfort food.

If you could give yourself 1 piece of advice to help with that struggle, what would it be?

Avoid people and events that don’t support my healthy habbits.

Did you plateau, get stuck, or get disillusioned, or even slide backwards a bit on your iourney?

Yes, I had Covid about 8 weeks ago and I struggled to get back on track.

What is better since you got healthy?

My ashma, I can actually walk without having to use my ashma pump.


What’s your favourite form of exercise? [Running, yoga, weightlifting, etc)

Walking and I love any high energy class like Zumba, bootcamp, pump, shape.

How long have you been training and how did you get started? ‘

On an off about 2 years, I met Nadia from zone health in Bronkhorstspruit and she got me started.

Favorite exercise? [Distance / pose / movement / etc)

I don’t have a favourite, burpes, jumping jacks, and resistance exercises. Yes burpees are EVIL but they train the entire body.

Least favorite exercise? [Distance / pose / movement / etc]

Sprinting and Skipping.

How does exercise make you feel?

Happy so happy, with excercising I find I don’t need to take anti-depresents.

Do you prefer to train alone or with others? Why?

With others I find I can push myself more.

Most embarrassing training moment?

I did not use the bathroom before doing Jumping Jacks.

Top 3 things you must have at the gym or in your gym bag?

  1. Ashma pump
  2. Towel
  3. Water

Your next training goal?

Gyming the full hour without needing to stop.

Top 5 songs on your training playlist?

The gym classes play music so I do not have my own play list.

How has exercise/training/Sport Changed your life? [Made it better, etc – please be specific]

I have more energy, I am not so depressed and it also brought back the spark in the bedroom.


What’s your favourite meal?

Burger King extra long chili cheese

OK, now what’s your favourite healthy meal?

Lean mince and gemsquash

Favourite protein?


Favourite fat?


Favourite carbohydrate?


What’s your nutrition philosophy / approach? [If you have one]

You are what you eat.

How many meals a day do you eat?

3 main meals and 2 snacks.

Do you have a cheat meal / treat strategy?

I see my coke lite as a cheat drink and USN Protein Bar as a cheat snack.


Most memorable personal best achievement to date. Something you maybe never imagined you could do?

Jumping ropes and running 5km (slow run).

Favorite quote?

Even if you fall, get back up. Getting up and moving is still better then sitting on the couch.

Favourite book?

The only book I read is the Bible.

What inspires and motivates you?

When my husband is proud of me that motivates me. Seeing it’s possible with other people inspires me.

For what are you most grateful?

To wake up every day and get another chance to be a better me.

What do you want to say to other community members who might be nervous or hesitant to make a start?

Sleekgeek does give a lot of support, so don’t start on Monday start today.

What are your top 5 tips for anyone starting on a healthy journey?

  1. Take it one day at a time
  2. Don’t weigh yourself every day
  3. If you have a cheat meal, you are only human but don’t make it a cheat week
  4. Don’t be too hard on yourself
  5. Prep your food, and always have healthy snacks

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Sleekgeek 21-Day Challenges

Build healthy habits, one day at a time.


Nutrition Challenge

Eat better, diet less.


Sleep Challenge

Sleep better, live more.


Movement Challenge

Move more, feel better.


De-Stress Challenge

Stress less, find peace.