My Weight Loss Story So Far…

By Laura Moncur @ 4:06 pm — Filed under:

My weight loss story is not the story people want to hear. People magazine runs articles about people who lose 100 pounds in five months or people who lose half of themselves in half that long. The populous likes to hear stories about the obsessive compulsive guy who lost weight by eating nothing but rice cakes. They want to hear about the lady who put on a pair of tennis shoes and ran herself thin in record time, eventually winning marathons. My story isn’t nearly as glamorous.

I joined Weight Watchers January 17, 2002. I remember the day because my life really hasn’t been the same ever since. My habits have drastically changed since that day a month before the winter Olympics. What was I thinking? I joined Weight Watchers right before I went to Hawaii for two weeks. I went to Hawaii. I went to Weight Watchers in a Catholic church in Ka’paa. I lost weight on that trip and I didn’t feel like I missed out on anything Hawaiian. I tried all the food, I just logged it in my food journal.

What was I thinking? I’ll tell you.

My friend, Stacey Staley, was looking good. She had always looked good, but she had confessed to me a few months earlier that she was the biggest she had ever been. She was wearing a size 14 and I would have killed to fit my size 24 ass into her fitted slacks. Still, she had been unhappy with her appearance. Several months after her confession, she looked amazing. I mentioned it and she whispered to me, “I didn’t want to tell anyone. I joined Weight Watchers and I’ve lost twenty-five pounds.” I was amazed. She ended up losing forty pounds, getting to goal and earning Lifetime with them.

Two months later, I noticed that my sister (also named Stacey) was getting thinner. She had always been more fit than I was, so it wasn’t amazing to me, but I asked her what she was doing. She confessed to me that she had joined Weight Watchers at work. She said that she really liked that she was able to eat at any restaurant. She said I should come because they were starting a new class at her work in January.

After fighting with every diet on the planet, I was tempted by the freedom to eat anything as long as it fit within my points range. I had tried the Atkins Diet, which ended in a bread binge that lasted for months. I had tried Body For Life, which was abandoned when the program didn’t allow for the pain that a new exerciser was going to feel. I was ready for Weight Watchers.

I knew two people who were looking fabulous because of Weight Watchers, so I joined with my sister’s at work program. I was disgusted with my appearance. I was ready to do whatever they told me to do because whatever they had was working. It worked for Stacey Staley and it worked for my sister. My sister was cut from the same cloth as I was. If it worked for her, it would work for me. I joined blindly and followed all of their rules. Forty-five pounds dropped off me with relative ease.

That’s the glamorous side of my story. I lost forty-five pounds in about four months. It was so easy that I was planning on being at my goal weight within the year. But here we are nearing my three year anniversary, and I’m not at goal yet. For awhile, that was really discouraging for me. I felt like I should be at my goal by now. Even though I had lost all that weight, I felt like I was a failure because I wasn’t at my goal yet. Each month that went by made that goal seem so much further away.

It wasn’t the plan’s fault. It’s not like I was staying within my points range and the weight wasn’t budging. No, I couldn’t blame it on Weight Watchers. My weight loss stagnated because I wasn’t following the program. Sure, I would follow it faithfully for a couple of weeks, but then the binges. I had allowed the bingeing to return to my life. I made excuses just like everyone else does. I could list them right now for you, all the excuses that I made for myself. They sounded so valid when I made them, but now they seem empty, like an abandoned hermit crab’s shell.

So here I am. My butt fits easily into those coveted size 14 jeans. I find myself in the strange situation of being where I wanted to be and finding out that it’s not enough. I know Weight Watchers told me that it was not enough, but back when I started with them, all I wanted was to be as thin as Stacey Staley was when she started. Now, I’m there and I realize they were right. My weight needs to be between 109 and 131 just like the little chart says. Losing forty-five pounds isn’t enough for me anymore.

Last Saturday, I was back on track. Last Saturday, I started Weight Watchers again just like I did back in January of 2002. The only difference is that it is so much easier for me now because I know exactly what to do. What is she thinking? Starting a weight loss program right before Christmas? Why doesn’t she just wait?

Nope. Can’t wait. Not one more minute. Not one more second am I going to wait. I can enjoy Christmas and eat healthy. I know this because I’ve done it for the last two Christmases. I can live like this for the rest of my life because this is the healthy way to go. I have cut the bingeing out of my life. That’s the only thing that I needed to do. I just needed to quit making excuses for the binges. You know the excuses (it’s Christmas, we’re on vacation, we’re camping, it’s a party, it’s the weekend, we’re celebrating, ad infinitum). They are crushed under my feet like that empty hermit crab shell. The shards splinter and spray around me and I am released from them forever.

If I lose at a healthy rate, I will be at my goal by October 1, 2005. That seems so far away, but I refuse to do anything unhealthy and losing faster than one or two pounds a week is not healthy. You’ve seen me do amazing things. I lost the first half of my weight without a glitch. I wrote 50,000 words in my novel in a month. I’ve written almost every day in my blog for over a year. I can do amazing things and this is the next one on my list. I will be at goal by October 1, 2005. This year, I’m going to be a vampire for Halloween and knock your socks off. Hope to see you at the party!


8 Responses to “My Weight Loss Story So Far…”

  1. Angela Carmon Says:

    Hi Dotti, I have to admit, I can’t believe how long it has taken me to lose only 10 lbs with WW. i sit in the meetings and I hear folks saying how easy their first 10, 20 30 even 70 lbs were to lose…. I’m stuck in a rut and can’t seem to budge past 10 lbs. I read your article today on binging because it seems that my appetite has increased for the winter months and I was hoping to get information at the meeting on this and how to handle the cravings. One of the ladies mentioned your website and suggested that I give it a look see. I’ve decided to go for another 12 weeks and this time saty within points. I’m exercising an hour a day it’s the sweets that are killing me right now so I’ll keep going to your site for advice and insight. Thanks for doing this for us. Angela

  2. Lisa Says:

    I just wanted to dsee if you were talking about weight watchers. I joined on January 3,2006 and have lost 11 pounds. I am encouraged by your story and wish you all the best. I am going to bookmark your site.

    Thanks for sharing your story with me


  3. elizabeth Says:

    I started Weight Watchers January 2, 2006 and have lost 31 lbs! It has been the easiest program I’ve ever tried. We are planning to go on a cruise this summer and my family says “You’re gonna throw your “diet” out the window, right?” What they don’t understand is that it’s not a “diet”, it’s a lifestyle! It’s about making healthier choices on a daily basis. And some days it’s minute by minute! I’ve tried several things to lose weight and it finally took me making a commitment to myself to follow the plan. And I have to recommit everyday to continue following the plan because I realize that I am worth it. My health is worth it!

  4. Kirstin Says:

    I love your diet/lifestyle story! I was a lifetime WW member about 25 years ago. I lost 45 pounds, and then adopted a disabled child. No meetings for a long time, and lots of eating to “feel better”. Now I am 25 years older, nearly 50, and I rejoined WW 4 weeks ago. I have lost nearly 5 pounds in my first month, and that makes me very happy. I noticed that my weight losses were slowing, and that’s because I wasn’t following the program…but follow it and it will work! Plus I have begun exercising. With 3 kids, one under 2 years, finding time has been hard…but I walk the dog in the very early morning, and then we take a family walk nearly every evening. Aerobics are my next goal, but time is a big factor….nonetheless I will continue to make indoor exercising a priority before summer ends, as I’ll have to do it in the winter! Thanks again! Kirsty

  5. Bella Says:

    WOW you really touched a big one here. How are you doing so far Laura Moncour? – Your last blog was in 2005.

  6. Megan Says:


    Thank you so much for sharing your story. I cried when I read it, because I understand what you say & what you feel. I have had friends that joined ww & have had success. I have always said “God, I don’t want to pay to join a group of people to tell me how to lose weight!” But I am thinking that maybe this is just what I need. I need the structure. I need the support.

    Thank you again for sharing & for the insight. I might just have to give it a try.

  7. Valerie Says:

    I came across your website because I was googling Kevin Smith’s weight and read what you wrote about his starvation dieting – definately something to be concerned about. I gained 25 pounds over 10 years and could not lose one pound until I joined WeightWatchers one-and-a-half years ago. Everyday before that time I would try to muster the resolve to reduce my eating – but it never ever worked. What a burden it is to feel guilty every single day.

    After joining WeightWatchers, I gradually adopted the core/flex plan, which means I was eating more and more core foods but also counting points. After several weeks of using WeightWatchers desserts and whatnot, I gave it up in favor of fruit, whole grains, vegetables, yogurt, organic meat. I feel that whole foods and exercise are the key to healthy and sustained weight loss. Now I am also eating more and more organic because there are over 50% more antioxidants in organic foods and because it’s so much better for the environment.

    It took me exactly one year to lose the 25 pounds I gained and I have kept it off for 6 months, in addition to maintaining my exercise and healthy eating habits. Sweets are definately an instant weight fluctuation for me, but I do usually eat one or two a week.

    I question whether sustained weight loss can be had with a large percentage of processed food in one’s diet – it just seems that those kinds of foods beget cravings whereas whole food is more satisfying (on a non-comfort-food level). Eating whole foods requires less will power in the long run because of the reduced cravings, and you can eat larger portions.

    PS my cholesterol went way down as well.

    So, good luck to all!!

  8. Laura Conway Says:

    Hi, As a dietitian I read your story with interest. Weight control is something millions of people stuggle with daily, myself included.

    I agree with one posters comment about a processed food diet. I find personally that cravings in particular are much better controlled on a whole foods diet compared to a processed foods diet. Cooking skills and time tend to be the biggest killers to that approach, but the end result is so worth it when you learn just a few techniques and take the time to take care of yourself. You can make big meals and freeze them in individual portions too for those nights when time is short.

    I’ve found a couple of other tricks that help too…

    For sugar cravings, the best thing to do is just avoid it. The first couple of days are hard, but after that your body adjusts and within a week fruit is a whole new experience. Grapes become candy. Trust me.

    To compliment this, start phasing out refined grains. Look for 100% whole grain on pastas, breads, bagels, etc. Eat brown rice instead of white. Avoid cakes, cookies, etc-at least for a while. You have to reset your internal works so to speak. Do a cleanse and then you can have those treats once in a while. Besides, refined grains are absorbed so quickly by your body that you are hungry again very quickly, and usually ravenous at that. Whole grains are digested more slowly and keep your energy level. Another great aspect-they help knock out belly fat.

    The other trick I have is to cut out meat. Not completely, but start replacing some of your meats with beans, peas, nuts, seeds, etc. Our meats-all of them-as animals are given feed, hormones, antibiotics, etc to keep them well and make them get fat/grow fast. Well marbeled meat is “better” than lean meat. Those chemicals don’t go away when meat is cooked. If it makes the animal fat, doesn’t it make sense it would tend to make us fatter too? No science behind it, but I have noticed some subtle differences when I cut back on meat. Could just be placebo effect, but I feel better anyway. Plus the fiber from the beans is a great way to fill up and not out (at least until the gas goes away.) 🙂

    And don’t forget the exercise. Most people mentioned exercising, but plateaus are very common. Your body likes to adapt and conserve. When you stop losing, that’s when it’s time to change up your exercise routine to make a different set of muscles work together. This can make a HUGE difference in how much weight you lose. And weights are key-even women need to do some strength training. The vast majority of women will not end up looking like Arnold if they lift weights a few times a week. Get some help at your gym to do this correctly or you could hurt yourself.

    The last thing I will say is to eat more fruits and vegetables in general. There is nothing wrong with a salad a day and there are plenty of ways to cook veggies and add lots of flavor (spices/herbs) to shake things up. You can eat a limitless amount of most veggies in particular (except the starchy veggies) and still not touch the calorie level in a couple of soft drinks.

    Good luck!

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