As I member of the lifestyle group, I was assigned to meet regularly with a nutritionist, Sharon Jackson, who would serve as my coach.
We were to meet weekly for the first 8 weeks, then biweekly thereafter.
At each session, I weighed in, then Sharon
gave me a short lesson plan to work through with her
I also got a Fat Counter booklet listing the fat content of 1500 foods, a pile of little blue notebooks where I would record my eating and exercise, and a chart I could use to keep track of my progress.
I also got a bunch of gifts, like a water bottle, a kitchen scale, and so forth.
I explained to Sharon
my doubts about my ability to lose weight.
I told her
that I had tried before, with some success, but I'd gained it all back.
And I had already changed my eating habits quite a bit, cutting back on fatty meats, eating cereal with skim milk for breakfast, and generally trying to avoid fat.
So I didn't see what more I could do.
asked me to just hang in and try out the program and see how it went.
Each of the sessions with Sharon
focussed on a different area of the process, from factual issues, such as how to determine portion sizes and the amount of fat in food, to psychological issues such as "Take Charge of What's Around You" and "Talk Back to Negative Thoughts".
But in addition to the prepared material, Sharon
was always ready to talk about whatever problems or issues I wanted to talk about, and to encourage me in my small successes.
Shortly after I started meeting with Sharon
, my father took his
first trip to Slovakia to track down long-lost relatives.
brought back a couple of picture books, and that particular picture struck me.
These were women who obviously were working hard in the fields, and yet they all shared a stocky body type - the same body type that my grandmothers had, and the same body type that I was trying to shed.
I took a copy of the picture in to Sharon
and told her
that this was the gene pool that I had come from, and this was what I had to fight against.
told me that genes were not destiny and I would be able to overcome my genes.