Jennifer's Story: Success at Last

New York mom sheds stubborn extra pounds

From the WebMD Archives

Jennifer only wanted to shed 10 to 15 pounds. But she'd been trying to lose those same few pounds for years.

"I kept failing because until I joined WLC, I didn't know how to eat!" admits the 39-year-old New Yorker, the mother of a toddler.

Jennifer is not one of those people who has been on every diet known to man. In fact, she had only tried one other formal program and found it tedious.

Then, she says, "I saw an ad for WebMD while watching baseball last fall, and while browsing the site, I stumbled on the WLC and thought, 'Why not?'"

Learning All the Time

Looking younger and looking good in her clothes were Jennifer's primary motivators for joining the WLC, but what she got was a whole lot more.

"It is a learning process and I am still learning, but now I have the tools I need to reach and maintain a healthy weight for the rest of my life," she says.

After joining the program, she realized that her portions were way out of line and that she was eating too much fat and too few carbohydrates. She now knows what a portion should look like, and she understands the importance of keeping a journal.

"The journal has made me mindful of what I eat," she says.

Further, "the feedback, tips, ideas and morale support from community, and information from newsletters and columns have been extremely valuable," says Jennifer. Not only that, but the WLC community has given her some laugh-out-loud moments of fun and camaraderie.

Lifestyle Changes

Since joining the program in October, Jennifer has added whole grains to her diet. She has easily given up fatty foods like butter, potato chips, and French fries -- but sometimes, she just has to have her fried calamari!

"I love the flexibility of the WLC and how it has taught me to eat properly and balance my calories," she says. "It has also shown me how to fit indulgences into my plan, and in my mind, being able to include your favorite foods is one of the best aspects about WLC."

A year ago, she did not own a scale and simply used the "zipper test" to see if her clothes were fitting properly. She now finds weekly weigh-ins critical to keeping her weight in check.

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Fitness Routine

The fact that city slicker Jennifer does not own a car has helped her weight loss efforts. Beyond walking in Brooklyn with her 23-pound son strapped to her back in a carrier, Jennifer has fallen in love with Pilates.

"The program made me much more conscious of getting exercise and as a result, I discovered a passion for Pilates," which she does both at home and at the gym.

Jennifer's Tips for Success

One big secret to her success, she says, was getting in touch with her body's signals of hunger and fullness.

"Following the program and my eating plan helped me to recognize hunger and satiety so that it no longer requires a conscious effort, but instead is a new healthy habit," she says.

She has also realized that her food cravings rarely have anything to do with hunger: "If I get a craving for chocolate, I chew a piece of gum, drink a glass of water, or do something to distract myself until the craving passes."

If you want to be successful at weight loss, don't ever give up -- or stop learning, advises Jennifer.

Name: Jennifer
Age: 39
Height: 5' 1/2"

Lost: 13 pounds in 5 months on the WebMD Weight Loss Clinic program

WebMD Weight Loss Clinic - Success Stories
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