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Losing weight is easy.  Keeping it off is the hard part.


I’m a compulsive overeater and food addict.  And a stress eater … and a boredom eater … and hey, while we’re at it, let’s throw emotional eater and “just-because-it’s-there” eater in there, too.  I tipped the scales at 237 in 2001, and at only 5’1”, that’s fat!  Over the past two decades, I have been on and off diets, losing anywhere from 30 to 80 lbs.  No matter how many successful starts I’ve had, something—a family crisis, my father’s death, a relational break-up, my bad attitude—has triggered a gradual drifting back to my old ways of living and eating. 


Anything worth having is worth working hard for, but I’m a lazy person.  However, I do realize that the only way my body is going to get where I need it to be is to do the necessary work to get it there.  In other words, eating healthy isn’t the only answer, I also need to exercise.  So what program could I implement that would fit my work schedule, personal life, and family demands, yet allow me to continue my healthy lifestyle?  Something my friends and family could support that would hold my interest, but also challenge me?




I contacted Tim Bergsten, whom I knew from my Fresh Ink journalism days.  Tim launched his own site, Pikes Peak Sports, a year ago, so if anyone knew a good starting point, he would.  I told him now that my Christmas Bahamas cruise was over, I was no longer motivated to continue losing weight.  I wanted to start an exercise program, and was considering running.  Did he know of a club or group that I could join where someone could mentor me so that I could train for a summer race?  He mentioned several groups, offered some great advice, and had this to say:


“Running is a worthy and beautiful pursuit that can provide a new set of physical, emotional and spiritual elements.”


His words encouraged me deeply.  Looks like I’m starting off on the “right foot.”


My journey won’t be perfect, but the plan is to NOT GIVE UP!

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Comment by Stephanie Merchant Johnson on February 14, 2011 at 9:50pm
Thanks, Trudy and Julie!  Encouragement and accountability are key in my journey, and comments like yours keep me boosted! 
Comment by Trudy L DeCoronado on February 9, 2011 at 10:23am
Congrats Stephanie! Trust me I know the sometimes "difficult" road you face not from eating but from NOT eating. There are more days than not that I have to force myself to eat, BUT due to working out and running, like you, I am willing and can and do put in the work it takes even on those days where it's difficult and you want to give up and revert to your old ways. If you need anything - a running partner (I'm slow though these days) words of encouragement and reminders I'm here for ya...You can do it - I know you can! Determination is a strong thing - I know!!
Comment by Julie Chagnon on February 7, 2011 at 3:02pm

Right on track.  The last thing you said about the journey is it.  You just gotta keep going, no matter how yucky you feel that day or what you've eaten that day. 

Its taken me a year and a half to lose 20 pounds, and its all because I took that first rough run.  Not because of food.  Do not listen to that inner enemy that tells you "lazy".  You are not.  You wouldn't be on this if you were, listen to the voice that says you've got this.  You are strong.



Comment by Tim Bergsten on February 6, 2011 at 9:46pm
Congrats Stephanie! I can't wait to read about your journey.

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