Monday, September 27, 2010

Sucess Stories

I have a Helpful Tips page on my blog. I have tried to put some of the most important tips I have learned along the way and put them all in one easy place for you to find. Today, I am adding a new tip to that page, Success Stories. Let me elaborate.

I relied heavily on other people who had already been through this process to help motivate me to keep going. On the Weight Watchers website their are weekly success stories posted for people to read. I need to read those stories, especially while I was losing weight. I found several stories on women about my height who had lost about as much as I needed to lose. I would tell myself if they did it so can I!

It you do not have a success story to motivate you, I would encourage you to find one.

On February 23, 2009 I emailed this success story to myself, so that I would not forget it. I hope you are able to take some time and read it. Who knows maybe it will become the story that motivates you as well.

. . . . . . . . . .

Name Ellen
Age 55
Height 5'4"
Was 197 lbs
Lost 64.2 lbs*
Weight 132.8 lbs
As of 7/23/2009

I started Weight Watchers more for my ego than my health. I was young enough that I didn’t feel my mortality, so I wasn’t seeing any health consequences. However, what I was seeing was a fat old lady staring back at me in the mirror, and a woman who looked decidedly unlike the person in my wedding pictures, a short five years earlier. It was more psychological than anything else. The toll my looks took on me when I dressed for work, or for special occasions – I was always depressed about my image.

One more time
The day I joined for my third and final time, I’d just changed jobs, going from a very staid corporate environment at a Wall Street investment bank to a much more laid back bank. I needed a casual wardrobe to match the corporate culture I was moving to, so that I’d fit in more readily. Because I hated the way I looked, I couldn’t face going to a department store so I ordered new clothes from catalogues and online. The size I ordered was what I thought I actually was. When all the boxes arrived I ripped them open with abandon only to realize that pants wouldn’t pass my hips; jackets wouldn’t meet in the middle. I think I wore a garbage bag to work the first day, making do with what I had.

On day one at the new job, I heard that they were starting an At Work Weight Watchers series. I wrote the check for the 10-week series, while eating a donut hole. The deal I made with myself was, “There is no timeframe in which you have to accomplish this. You are a remedial Weight Watchers member. You’ve had to repeat the course before, and this time, you’ll graduate.”

Private affair
I didn’t share my decision to join Weight Watchers meetings and follow the POINTS® Weight-Loss System with anyone. I had to do it entirely on my own since I’d been unsuccessful before. I was a three-time loser, a fallen angel, so to speak. I knew if I blabbed about it, I’d be getting judgmental comments all day long, “Are you allowed to eat that?” and “Should you be having that?” So I thought, let this be my battle and when the change becomes obvious — if it ever did — I’d be able to address it.

The weight loss was slow and steady. My Leader, Michael, was instrumental in getting me to see the road clearly and to be patient with the process which, incidentally, involved a four-month plateau when I was only two glorious pounds from goal. Quitting, however, was never considered. Being in the meetings every week, regardless of how I felt, made the difference. Those who helped most were other members, unbeknownst to them. I didn’t miss one meeting. I even went one time when I had the flu.

Once I got to goal I knew I wanted to be a Leader. Today I have even left my full-time work at the bank to pursue helping others change their lives full time! The joy and fulfillment that I get being a Leader is immeasurable. I get the rare opportunity to stand by and watch as people take the reins in their lives and uncover great things about themselves. It is miraculous.

Show up
The main thing I stress to my members is to show up to your meetings. You don’t have to talk, but if you’re there, that one thing you hear might be the thing that turns your life around. Also, have fun with the process. If you make a game of it, and realize that the more of it you do, the better adept you become. So much of it, like tracking, becomes a background habit, like brushing your teeth. Things end up being easier and more pleasant with time.

Ellen’s Tips
• Make peace with tracking. Consider that what you don’t write down on paper is going to get written down on a body part where it can’t be erased as easily.
• Use the Web site for the Recipe Builder, recipe ideas and to be inspired by others.
• Use your 35 weekly POINTS Allowance. I eat butter and chocolate, and have a weekend martini. That’s where my “pleasure” allowance goes!
• A food scale is indispensable
• Love your accomplishment, and love yourself, no matter how much you lose each week. Use the gains (and there will be some) as a learning tool.


Ellen Before



Ellen After

4 comments:

Stephanie said...

WOW ... she looks incredible! Thank you for sharing! :)

Living a Changed Life said...

You're welcome Stephanie!

Cathy Kennedy said...

I think it's marvelous when anyone accepts the challenge of getting back on track with their weight goals. This woman is just one fine example.

To be perfectly honest, I've never had a weight problem issue with the exception of post-pregnancy weight which every woman experiences.

However, three to four years ago something strangely wierd took place inside my bod. All of a sudden pounds magically began to pile on me with seemingly little effort on my part despite my work outs and dieting. Nothing was stopping this tragedy from happening.

In those years, I went from 105 to 135. To me, the 30 pound increase felt like 135 pounds given the hardship it was to make any progress in the right direction to revert this catastrophe.

That was then, this is now. I learned over the course of countless headaches, my problem stemmed from hormones(I had a hysterectomy in 2001 which finally caught up with me) and a sudden intolerance to carbs. Since the start of 2010, I began watching what I ate more closely, got on the proper dose of HRT, and eventually moved to the Atkins diet. I'm now 10 pounds from my target goal of 105 pounds.

So, to see someone who had far more pounds to struggle off than me and to accomplish much, then my heart, prayers, & joy goes out to them for a job well done.

Living a Changed Life said...

Hi Cathy - Wow. Thank you for sharing your story. Congrats on being 10 pounds away from your target weight! That is amazing. Keep up the great work.

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