Patsy was “bloated and depressed” when she saw the sign that changed her life

Patsy Tierney was a world champion in sports aerobics and spent a decade at the forefront of the sport.

But after he retired, he started drinking every day to cope with the demands of a full-time job while raising two children under the age of two as a single mom.

“Bloathed and depressed,” and having lost all enthusiasm for exercise, she was on a downward spiral when she saw a sign advertising a marathon.

Now, she wants to help other struggling mothers get their lives back.

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Patsy Tierney is the mother of two behind the Fit Mumma Classic. (Photo provided/Marc Rafaelle)

Tierney started teaching aerobics part-time in Adelaide at the age of 18 while studying law at university.

“It was the late 80s and the real heyday of aerobics, when guys would come to my classes in unitards and I’d be dressed in a thong over my leotard and leg warmers,” she said. to say.

She entered an aerobics competition at her local mall and won.

“I ended up winning everything to get to nationals,” Tierney said.

“I became a professional athlete. I thought it was a lot more fun than studying law,” she said.

Aerobics was big business and soon had major sponsors, including Nike.

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Tierney, centre, at the Ms Fitness Australasia competition in 1997.. (Supplied)

Tierney ended up winning the Ms Fitness Australasia competition.

The prize was a chance to compete in the international event run by Arnold Schwarzenegger, but she was too busy to attend, with her sights set on the World Aerobics Championship title.

She was runner-up five times before finally winning the title in 1998.

He moved to Sydney in 2000 just as aerobics was starting to wane, so he hung up the leg warmers and finished his law degree.

In 2006, he moved to the Gold Coast after accepting a job there.

That year, she and her then-fiancé welcomed a son, Xavier, followed 22 months later by a daughter, Amelia.

“I became a professional athlete. I thought it was a lot more fun than studying law.” (Supplied)

But three months after the arrival of their daughter, the relationship broke down.

Tierney became a single mother with two children under the age of two. She had no time or enthusiasm for exercise and stopped taking care of herself.

“I was working full-time and looking after two children under the age of two pretty much on my own,” she said.

“I was snacking all the time on what the kids were eating and I felt terrible.”

She said her self-esteem plummeted.

“It’s incredibly confronting to go from being an athlete or being fit to having children. I had two C-sections and it takes a good couple of years to fully recover.”

The mother began drinking every day to cope with life as a single mother of two young children while working full-time. (Instagram)

Tierney started pouring herself a glass of wine every night. Then two Pretty soon he was drinking every day.

“Alcohol was an escape and as a result my mental health wasn’t good and I felt unable to cope. It all came crashing down.”

Luckily, Tierney saw a doctor and a psychologist. She took anti-depressants, which helped her through her darkest days.

That’s when he saw the sign for the Gold Coast Marathon.

“I thought, ‘I’m going to do it,'” he said.

Despite never having been a runner, she signed up for the 10km race and started working out again.

Tierney and his children during his unhealthy phase. (Supplied)

“I started with a bit of running and then walking. I was still on anti-depressants and I was still drinking,” he says.

“It was very humbling for me, because I had always been very fit.”

Little by little he accumulated and managed to complete the race.

“No records were broken,” he laughed, “but I did.”

Pretty soon, Tierney’s attention turned to other moms who might be stuck at home in a similar rut.

She became a qualified postnatal fitness trainer and ran Mums and Bubs programs at a gym.

She also worked as a personal trainer with moms who wanted more high-intensity workouts like CrossFit and running.

Tierney shortly after restarting her fitness journey. (Supplied)

It was then that she realized there were no mums-only events to compete in, and the idea for the Fit Mumma Classic was born.

“Women can train for an event and when they get there they’re up against a 21-year-old who has all the time in the world to train,” she said.

Fit Mumma Classic is a one-day fitness event that sees mums take part in three training sessions and a final.

“I gave each workout a silly name, like The School Run. It’s one minute on a high-intensity bike, then running with a sandbag, then lifting weights.”

The first event took place on the Gold Coast in May 2023.

“I didn’t know if anyone would be interested,” he said. In the end, all 100 places were filled.

The next Fit Mumma Classic is planned for Logan, Queensland in July. The 150 places, from beginners to masters, are already occupied.

She hopes to take the national event next year.

In the meantime, she will be holding a free virtual event to get women to walk or run 30km during the month of May.

Mothers can log in at website to participate.

Tierney today. (Instagram)

The website will launch an online training program later this year aimed at stay-at-home moms with babies or toddlers.

Tierney, now 52, ​​urged women who have stopped exercising to start, no matter how small.

“If someone doesn’t know where to start, just start walking. It’s something you can do anywhere and you can take the stroller,” she said.

“If you want to start running, just start running between light poles and then walk to the next one and so on.”

She said running up stairs or hills and back down was a good way to start as it puts less stress on the body than running on the flat, and also suits women who have recently had a baby “as the incline helps stack the ribs on top of the pelvis, helping posture.”

Tierney said setting a goal was also a good idea.

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