Weight has been a problem for me my whole life. I tried several different diets but I never stuck with them for more than a few months. Things got worse when I started having severe abdominal pain, diarrhea and nausea. I missed months of work and had to take a leave of absence from school. After being diagnosed with Crohn's disease, I spent years trying to manage the disease with many different medications and surgery. One day my friend told me she and her daughter were joining Weight Watchers and asked if I wanted to join. We jokingly called ourselves Fatties Unite Tonight. It was so much easier to make healthy choices when the people closest to me were changing right along with me.
To make weight loss and increased activity achievable, I made small changes and set small goals. At first it was to make better food choices or to drink more water. I'd also set small weight loss goals - just 10 pounds - because that always seemed so close! After I'd hit a plateau, my sister asked if I wanted to walk a 5K with her. So, I started a walking program, slowly building up the distance, time and speed. As I crossed the finish of my first 5K with my family and friends cheering me on, I couldn't wait for the next race. In 2011 I completed 4 5K races, a 9K race and a 10K race.
In total, I've fought my way through 172.6 pounds. Today I celebrate every single pound lost with family, friends, Weight Watchers group, my blog readers who always encourage me to keep going. As a result of these lifestyle changes, I've been able to reduce the frequency/dosage of medication to manage my Crohn's. I love the fact that I have so much energy now that I'm planning on doing 18 races this year. Every time I cross the finish line I am reminded that I don't have to be someone I don't want to be. I've finally found my inner fighter! And, now, we have a new club: Fitties Unite!