MC Weight Watchers Shed Hundreds of Pounds
June 20, 2008Losing more than 800 pounds is a success story to crow about for nearly two dozen Weight Watchers at Mississippi College.
What began with MC folks chatting over lunch on the Clinton campus opened doors to better eating habits, more exercise and an amazing slim-down of calories.
"I knew it was time to lose weight when I was no longer sure that my knees would support me when I was going downstairs," said Marilyn Sauls, the MC human resources director. She was one of the original Weight Watchers members at MC when the program got off the ground in October 2006.
Weight Watcher members like Lynda Street are equally bullish about the program and what it can accomplish with a little persistence and encouragement.
Last October - after just nine months as a member - Lynda lost dozens of pounds. Her story isn't unique at MC. Her weight was not only down. Her blood pressure and cholesterol count dropped, too. "I looked quite different and felt like a million dollars," Street said. Away from the Weight Watcher gatherings at the MC cafeteria or the Baptist Healthplex, she works in Provine Chapel as the secretary to the dean of the School of Christian Studies and the Arts.
Their success stories became possible with a little egging on from colleagues and a steady diet of encouragement. "Accountability and support are the two key factors for us," Street said. "We work together, exercise together, eat together, share our victories and defeats, and pass along recipes and tips regarding food items."
One MC staffer in the group is dubbed the "Food Police." This hard-working vice president in Nelson Hall patrols the campus cafeteria to keep tabs on Weight Watcher members - to see if we are properly eating or cheating.
Another staffer in the MC administration building is called the "Exercise Police" because she monitors Weight Watchers comings and goings at the Baptist Healthplex. It's the fabulous place on the Clinton campus where WW members swim, lift weights, walk around the indoor track, ride bike machines and the Stairmaster. "She holds our feet to the fire," Street said. The Exercise Police asks Weight Watcher members if they have an excused absence for being a Healthplex no-show. Another MC employee aiding the cause is known as the "Encourager," for her many food discoveries at the grocery store and endless supply of tips.
Some Weight Watcher members are in it for the short term But Street, Sauls and several others at the Christian university are definite diehards who eliminated the word "quit" in their vocabulary.
At the 182-year-old Baptist school, they've made it hard for newcomers to match their faithfulness to Weight Watchers. During their first twelve week stretch, the group at MC combined to lose nearly 400 pounds. Some reached their goals and became Lifetime Members. A tiny few fell off the wagon.
Street sums up the consensus among WW members at Mississippi College. "Weight Watcher's is not a diet," she said. "It is a lifestyle change for the rest of our lives. No more mindless eating for us."
PICTURED standing: Kathy Wilson, Mike Boyd, Marilyn Sauls, Lynda Street, Betty Williamson, Linda Wall, Linda Taylor, Chad Phillips, Angie Hardin, Elnora Lewis, Debbie De Priest, Wayne VanHorn, Sherry Bobo, Randy Miley, Mary Dixon, Mac Culpepper. Seated: Laura Rogers, Billy Thornton, Karen Key, Ken Gilliam