It’s been three years since Madeline Stuart became the first adult professional model with Down syndrome.
Since she strutted the catwalk at New York Fashion Week back in 2015, in a groundbreaking appearance, the inspirational Australian model has racked up a whole heap of impressive career achievements.
Her modeling shots have been seen by millions across the globe, but Madeline, 21, has now revealed her success came only after she set her heart on achieving another goal.
Becoming the healthiest version of herself she could be.
She has lost 25 kilos over the last three years – and now starts 2018 as the fittest she’s ever been.
Madeline’s mother, Rosanne, told New Idea her daughter’s health began to decline in the last year of high school and she found it difficult to keep up with friends at dance and sport.
‘One very hot day it all became too much, the puffing and feeling uncomfortable and she said she wanted to get healthy and that is what she did,’ Rosanne said.
‘She ate smaller portions and cut out all junk food, in the first year of her weight loss she swam for an hour every afternoon.
‘She did not lose weight to become a model but became a model when she lost weight as she felt empowered and confident to strut her stuff.’
These days, Madeline works out with a personal trainer for one hour six times a week.
She does cardio and weights – running, boxing, doing sit-ups and chin-ups.
‘My $30,000 dollar body, almost 3 years in the making,’ Madeline wrote on Facebook.
‘Some people spend their money on alcohol, some on cigarettes or chocolate but I spend mine on my amazing personal trainers. I feel amazing, my heart is the healthiest it has ever been and at my last check up my doctor said it had not enlarged as it is no longer working so hard to maintain the 3 holes and leaky Mitro valve.
‘Looks like I may never have to go through open heart surgery again if I maintain my health. For those who think it is a lot of money, well how much is my health worth. I am pretty happy with the results.’
Her mum Rosanne explained that she had been worried about her daughter previously as she would pass out occasionally.
‘One night in winter, about a month before she said she wanted to get fit, she passed out in the shower and I could not lift her dead weight, she then weighed 70kg,’ she explained.
‘At the time I was so scared I was failing my daughter and would not be able to care for her when I got older.
‘I did not know what to do but then she told me a few weeks later that she wanted to get healthy so I supported her all the way and now at 45kgs I can lift her anytime.’
According to her mum, next on Madeline’s to-do list is a bikini shoot.
‘But for now she plans to rock the runways at London fashion week later this month and Paris Fashion Week, next month,’ Rosanne said.