The Buddy System helped these friends lose 200 pounds together
The Strategy: The buddy system.
The Payoff: Shauna lost 100 pounds and Kristin lost 105 (and counting!)
The workplace can be a dieter’s downfall. Just ask Kristin Creighton, 43, and Shauna Carleton, 37, of Boston, friends and coworkers since 1992. “We used to be a horrible influence on each other’s eating,” admits Shauna. “I’d encourage Kristin to have a doughnut so I’d feel less guilty about having one too.”
Despite the slip-ups, these best friends have had weight-loss success in the past. In 1998, with Shauna’s upcoming wedding in 18 months as inspiration, Kristin shed a whopping 100 pounds and the bride-to-be dropped 35. When the big day came and went, though, so did their motivation. “We just put blinders on and ignored the scale,” says Kristin. Not surprisingly, they both regained the weight they’d lost and then some.
By 2005, Shauna had had enough. She told Kristin that they needed to really support each other if they wanted to shape up for good. So instead of eating dinner out, they began going to Weight Watchers meetings. Instead of hitting McDonald’s for a calorie-laden lunch, they took three-mile walks. Instead of grabbing a doughnut for a snack, they helped one another avoid sweets.
And it worked—three years later, they had each lost more than 100 pounds. But then the economy threw a wrench into their momentum: The financial company for which they both worked closed last June. Kristin is currently unemployed and Shauna now works from home. “It would have been easy to give up and go back to terrible eating habits after I got laid off,” says Kristin. “But we’d come so far, we just had to figure out ways to make it work.” The two still attend Weight Watchers meetings together and encourage each other constantly. Their goal now: to each lose another 50 pounds by the end of the year.
Kristin and Shauna’s Tips:
1. Drop the D-word. Successfully shedding pounds requires a new attitude. “Don’t think diet, think change of lifestyle.”
2. Don’t lose your footing over slip-ups. “If you give in to a craving and overdo it, chalk it up to lessons learned and try not to make the same mistake again.”
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