Success Stories - Kathy

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As a teenager I was a cheerleader and basketball player and was able to fit in those tiny little outfits. When I entered college I began to gain weight. By the time I was a senior, I weighed 160 and had my first experience with dieting. I was engaged to be married and had purchased my wedding gown several months in advance in a size 13/14. I told the clerk that I planned to lose weight and she smiled as she guaranteed me that would be no problem. I really had no trouble losing the weight because I was a Home Economics major and during your senior year you were required to live in a home management house as one of the classes. As students, we were responsible for planning and preparing healthy meals for our roommates. By my wedding in May of 1979, I weighed 130 and had my gown altered. I remember looking and feeling just great and thought I could stay like this forever. That didn't happen! Two children and 13 years later I weighed in at 207 and knew I needed to do something. 

I never really felt fat but knew that when I couldn't fit into a size 18 anymore that it was time for a change. A teacher I worked with had joined Weight Watchers with a birthday check her grandmother had given her. She was having great success and I decided to give it a try. I joined in April of 1992 and with her support never went off program and lost 79 pounds in 5 months. I ate at the least amount of food and would often exercise 3-4 hours a day! I loved the program and thought I looked great at 128 and a size 4. 

Friends and family were very concerned about my weight loss because it was such a drastic change in such a short time. I was able to keep my weight off just through Christmas of that year. After that it was impossible to keep up the exercise pace that I had set for myself. I also began eating things that I had not allowed myself to eat for all those months. The weight came back on, slowly at first, and then all of the sudden I weighed 197 pounds and couldn't look at myself in the mirror anymore. Not only did I let my weight go but also my clothes, makeup and hair. I went on like this for a few years until I started to feel my weight in my back. 

In May of 1999 I decided that I didn't care about being thin but I did care about being healthy. As a special education preschool teacher and a high school basketball coach I have a very active schedule and it was getting difficult to get through those busy days. I once again joined Weight Watchers. I trusted the program and knew that if I worked for it it would work for me. What I found when I went back was the 123 Point system and I feel in love with it. I knew though that the first time I lost weight I had become obsessed and wasn't going to do that this time so I began slow, ate at mid range of the points and walked daily. The weight began to come off and once again it was easy! 

By the beginning of the school year in August I weighed 157 just 9 pounds shy of my new goal weight. I did well throughout the school year but in the spring began to put on a little weight. I still thought I looked pretty good even though I hadn't reached goal. I was just kidding myself. I hadn't gained just a little weight I had gained back 26 pounds and was disgusted with myself. So, one morning I got up and said I'm going back to Weight Watchers, I am going to reach goal and I am going to learn to maintain my weight. That was in July of 2000. I reached goal in December of 2000 of 148 pounds. I wear a size 8 but more importantly than that, feel healthy. I walk/run on a regular basis but don't feel guilty if I have to miss a day or two. I have chosen to incorporate any food I like into life because I have learned that when I would deny myself something that is when I would get in trouble. I don't pretend to think maintenance will be easy but I feel so prepared and I love a challenge. When I was searching for before and after pictures I realized the only picture I had of myself were my school photos because I didn't care to get in front of anyone's camera. I have a feeling that will change because I am now very confident in how I look and feel.

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Photos - L-R: 1996; Aug 2000 at 173 lbs; Oct 2000

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