Toni's Story

Competitive Perfectionist


My eating disorder began at the age of 10 and has ebbed and flowed since. I am now 26 and can confidently share my experience. The illness stemmed for me from my competitive nature, I wanted to be the best athlete I could be. This became an obsession and shortly after winning a state medal in high jump I was hospitalised with a very low heart rate and left unsure of what I’d done to deserve this treatment. It was difficult to adjust to a hospital bed when I’d always been so active and when I was able to move again about a year later I was met with injuries and other difficulties.

I don’t think I ever fully recovered, I believe as a woman it’s very hard to ever forget about your body size and this was only heightened when I began modelling as a 16 year old. As a teenager my focus shifted to food over exercise. However, most of this was unnoticed as I never presented as being unwell. This carried on well into my 20’s and it has been an ongoing and uphill battle against body stigma and unrealistic standards particularly those of the fashion industry.

Now, 16 years on I can honestly say I love my body. I have removed myself from modelling agency boards and I feel safe to return to competitive individual sports knowing I will nourish and fuel my body accordingly