And then there was Overeater’s Anonymous. I prayed like crazy every week, holding hands with people I’d probably never choose as friends: “God, grant me the serenity…” And, believe it or, with no more bread of any kind, and three minute meals a day, I lost fifty pounds. A family friend sent me a ‘Victoria’s Secret’ black and white silk pajama as a congratulations gift. I was a size six for about one week with big smiles on my face, and have pictures to prove it. But, as you can guess, it wasn’t long before I rediscovered bread and sweets and put it all back on. Sad but true.

That was the just about the last straw. I decided I need to go it alone. I spent one full year of my life keeping a food journal, writing like a fiend, convinced that if I get my feelings out, I would be less likely to want to stuff them down with food. The result was over two hundred single-spaced words of pain, humiliation and heartache, but not one pound lost.
And so, I had to stop and ask myself what I was willing to do to lose the weight and get healthy. This was the biggest breakthrough of all, because I came to the realization that if I wanted something as badly as I wanted my health, I would need to commit to taking action. I felt that it was now or never as my age has progressed to the sixties. I joined a local YMCA and studied their schedule of classes. I decided that I would try Pilates, and that I could definitely work two classes per week into my schedule. I also decided that I had to start going back to Weight Watcher’s to re-learn how to eat well. Also, Weight Watcher’s my program choice because I yearned to be around people who would understand and support me.

I began to cook more and still bake, but the difference was that I began to give away my baked goods. I discovered that I received just as much if not more pleasure than eating the sweets, myself. I began cooking mountains of vegetables and creating meals around them, deciding, too, to cut out all white flour and pasta and substitute whole wheat, only. I packed snacks every time I left the house: apples, cut-up carrots, Weight Watcher snack products, pineapple chunks. In essence, I made sure that I would never find myself so hungry that I would reach for food without stopping to think. I planned for success.

Also, the two Pilates classes per week turned into at least four times a week of exercise, because I began to incorporate fast walking on a treadmill for two miles each time. I found that using my I-Pod and listening to upbeat music helped improve my mood and give me the sensation of dancing rather than walking fast or exercising. I became hooked on the feeling of hope. I felt younger, more fit, and more productive in my everyday life. By following the healthy eating guidelines of Weight Watcher’s and keeping my routine consistent, I ended up getting to my goal weight. I did it not by being perfect, and not by giving up sweets, entirely, because along the way, I certainly did have my ups and my downs.

I succeeded because I persevered. I never gave up. It’s truly the answer: just never give up.

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