Sharon’s Diet Story

Starting weight:      200

Current weight:       145

Total pounds lost:     55

Goal weight:             130

Sharon is a housewife with two small children.  After each pregnancy she gained 40-50 pounds, never fully taking them off.  Ultimately she found herself 70 pounds overweight.  Tired from caring for a young family, doing grocery shopping, cooking, laundry, Sharon found herself tired all the time with little energy to do anything but care for the kids and do her household chores.  While she is a dedicated mother and wife, Sharon realized she wasn’t doing anything for herself anymore, which left her feeling frustrated and sad.

Sharon asked her doctor for help. She needed to lose weight and boost her energy level and she couldn’t manage it on her own.  Life had become a series of Monday morning diets, generally failing before nightfall Monday nights. She did not exercise at all beyond household chores. Often she ate the children’s left over dinner, before eating a generous portion of her own.  Likewise she “tasted” everything she cooked as she was preparing it.  Dinners had become kid friendly favorites like pizza, mac and cheese, McDonalds specials and breaded everything!

What bothered Sharon the most was seeing her cute little daughters cheeks fill out and become rounder and rounder with each passing year.  She didn’t want her girls to face the life long struggle being overweight as she herself had.  Sharon knew she had to get her own weight under control, so she could help her entire family live a healthier lifestyle as well.

Sharon’s doctor prescribed phentermine for a 12 week course of treatment.  From day one Sharon noticed a decrease in her appetite.  In addition, she eliminated all the extra servings of food (kid’s leftover and the tasting while cooking).  She ate her 3 meals a day with 2-3 100 calorie snacks.  Since her appetite was diminished it was easier to eat 5-6 small meals a day.  In the first two months Sharon lost 20 pounds, going down 2 dress sizes.  She also started taking nightly walks with her neighbor, after the husbands were home and the kids were in bed. The third month saw a plateau and in the whole month Sharon only lost another 3 pounds which was very discouraging.

By now Sharon starting checking out dieting blogs and was motivated to keep a diet journal herself.  She joined a gym to take classes every day after dropping the kids off at school and continued the nightly walk with the neighbor.  In addition, the family menu changed.  No more happy meals at McD’s and grilled chicken and quinoa replaced mac and cheese.  Domino’s pizza was replaced by homemade pizza on whole wheat crust with low fat cheese topped with a healthy portion of vegetables.  The kids enjoy helping to make their own individual pizza.  Everyone gets one portion, and if they are hungry they can add additional vegetables to fill up on.  Desert is a low fat Popsicle for 110 calories.

The whole family is feeling more energized, looking slimmer and healthier.  Family bike rides on Saturdays are now the norm.  Sharon has dropped 55 pounds in nine months, she would like to lose an additional 15 pounds to reach her goal of 130lbs.

We asked Sharon the following questions to help motivate and inspire others with their weight loss:
Sharon, what inspired you to change your lifestyle?

I was tired, overweight and not setting a good example for my daughters.
How did you adjust to the lifestyle changes you were making?

It was very difficult at first.  Every time I slipped and had a cookie or nibbled from my kids plates I felt like such a loser. I never thought I would reach my ultimate goal. But then a funny thing happened.  I realized that on the phentermine I really just wasn’t as hungry as I usually am and that a smaller meal could satisfy me.  It made me realize that many times I eat it’s not because my body is hungry or I need the food – but out of laziness or convenience.  This motivated me to change my habits.
What were the most difficult and the most rewarding parts of your diet plan?

The most difficult was fighting the urge to cheat and then wanting to quit because I had cheated.  It is very hard to break years of bad habits.

The most rewarding was sticking to the self imposed challenges I set for myself. First I swore off eating anything from my kid’s plates. Then I swore off tasting the food I was cooking.  I rationalized that I had cooked these meals hundreds of times, and I didn’t need to check it tasted “right”.  Next I decided on healthier meal options that I knew my family already enjoyed, instead of the similar more fattening meal I often prepared. Lastly, I upped my activity level and got my friends and family in on the schedule to do it with me.
What words of advice can you offer to fellow dieters?

Don’t be afraid to admit you need help.  Having my doctor start me off on phentermine did not feel like I was cheating, but gave me the push to get started that I often failed to stick with on my own.  While phentermine felt like a miracle drug at first, it does wear off and the rest is left up to you to continue what the phentermine started.
Any last remarks to offer dieters?

Just stick with the diet program even if it seems like you’re not accomplishing you goals or losing as much weight as you think you should be or even very much weight at all. Every little bit counts, from the calorie counting and the exercise. I look back now and think “What if I had given up?” I wouldn’t be this happy and I would still have all that extra weight on me. Nothing feels as