On the healthy housewives finale episode of The Dr. Oz Show, I was honored when Dr. Oz asked me and my fellow housewives to blog as Wellness Warriors. We replied, “Yes” with excitement as America watched. The only other Wellness Warrior at the time was Nancy, and she was already knocking the responsibility out of the park. I knew that I wanted to help people, but just didn’t know how, so I did what I was asked to do and wrote 1 weekly entry.
To my surprise, folks were connecting with me by writing and seeking my help. My first connection was with Karlene. She was eager and excited, and took what my friend Stacy and I called our “YOU Gals 90-Day Challenge.” She kept in daily contact with me and reported her food, steps, weight and waist size – just as I had done with Dr. Roizen. Karlene was on a mission and by the end of the 90-Day Challenge, she had dropped 40 pounds and 11 inches from her waist. Karlene is still working and we will reveal her progress shortly.
Many people signed up for the 90-Day Challenge, many were committed and we lost some along the way, but that’s okay because I’m available when they are ready to make that YOU-turn. I had the pleasure of being a Wellness Warrior/Coach to one of my closest and best friends. We meet when I was a senior in high school and she was a senior in college. She and her husband took care of me as if I was their own, despite the fact that we were not many years apart in age. She had followed me throughout my journey on The Dr. Oz Show, and had heard that Stacy and I would be joining together to form YOU Gals with the help of “The Enforcer,” Dr. Roizen, and would be blogging on doctoroz.com.
When she heard about our challenge she said that she wanted to join in. Starting out was tough because sometimes it’s hard to work with friends and family. But, like Stacy says, “We are YOU Gals, we can do this!” I collected Sherri’s e-mails daily, helped her make better food choices and pushed her to get those steps. There was a time when Roizen said, “Toni you have to be positive in your coaching.” This was after I had told Sherri that she had failed to plan; he said you don’t want to use words like fail. To that I replied, “Doc, she needs tough love, you can’t give her light and fluffy.”
To ensure that I hadn’t discouraged her, I reached out again. She said, “I got it, I failed to plan and will plan going forward.” During the challenge she endured the personal loss of her father, all while helping her brother plan his wedding and being a working wife and mother. Although all of that was going on, I encouraged Sherri to take care of herself and to follow through with what she had started.
When we would talk, I asked her what about the plan was her favorite part. She responded, “YOU can eat!” Her snack of choice had become the popcorn found in YOU: On a Diet, although she said that she kind of got carried away with the cayenne pepper the first time around.
What I love most about all of this is that I’ve been able to help her and others. To me, being a Wellness Warrior is not just a title; it’s a responsibility that I hold dear to my heart. I’ve struggled with my weight for a long time and never thought that I would be the one helping other achieve their weight loss goals – but I am and I’m happy about it.
Do you need a cheerleader or someone just to check in with? If so follow up on facebook as YOU Gals. Do you need some individual help? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you want to see what a Wellness Warrior can do for you if you are committed? Check out Sherri’s progress below: