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OEBB Weight Watchers Success Stories
OEBB Members are Succeeding with Weight Watchers!

We've heard so many positive comments and "thank you"s from OEBB members participating in Weight Watchers, we needed to create a whole new web page just for the success stories! Scroll down the page and get inspired! 
Congratulations to everyone achieving your weight loss goals. Keep up the great work, and keep the stories coming!
Do you have a success story to share? Send an e-mail to jackie.cowsill@state.or.us to join the ranks of these super stars and help motivate your colleagues!

Are you ready to sign up? Or just want to learn more?
Visit our Weight Watchers FAQ page for more details about the program.

Sue Morgan - Jefferson County School District (February 2013)
I am so thankful that our insurance covers Weight Watcher's, if it wasn't covered, I would have never discovered how life-changing of a program that Weight Watcher's is.  Initially, I didn't want to join, but my husband did.  He had talked about joining WW for years, but I always felt like we didn't need to pay someone to teach us what to do to lose weight...we knew what to do, we just needed to do it.  Wow, was I ever wrong!  In the past, losing weight always meant deprivation, and that doesn't work in the long run.  Having the insurance benefit removed the financial barrier (or excuse).  One day, my husband announced that he was going to join and I could come along...or not...but regardless of what I chose, he was going to join.  Well I am the cook in the household so I figured I had better go and learn the program (for him).  
Since I was reluctant at first, it took awhile for me to fully embrace the program.  I began to implement the tiny changes that I was learning about in meetings.  Soon, I realized that I was dealing with my personal issues with food and learning new and healthy ways to replace the unhealthy lifestyle that contributed to my weight problem.  I have lost 60 pounds and have never once felt deprived, or like I was on a diet!  This program is so flexible, and that is what makes it work!  Since I didn't have to deprive to get to my goal, I know that I will stay at goal - I never hit that brick wall feeling like I couldn't do it another day. (My husband has lost 31 pounds at WW, and an additional 30 prior to joining the program).
Some of the things that helped me are: 
  • Meetings:  I always learned something new.  I love hearing other members share their tips, tricks, motivations, go to foods, snacks, strategies, how to deal with challenging situations, etc.  I feel like there is such a magic that takes place in the meeting room.  This is where I began to change from the inside out! 
  • Flexibility:  Definitely the flexibility built into the program with the weekly allowance and activity points makes this program liveable for the long term.  I have found a new life and I don't miss the old one.  In the past, willpower would give out and I couldn't wait to get back to eat all the foods that I had been deprived of.  Not true with WW, as I have had indulgances along the way without it having a detrimental effect on my overall goals.  In fact, I view the use of my weekly allowance and/or activity points as an insurance to keep me from hitting that point of no return that happens at the end of a deprivation diet. 
  • Small behavior changes:  I am amazed at how simple little changes that are easy to implement really add up and make a difference!  Even when I am in a situation where I might overeat (such as our vacation at an all inclusive resort last summer), I am able to maintain control by keeping up with those little changes.  I may indulge here or there along the way, but continuing the many positive changes at the same time truly keeps me on the right path.  My husband and I have implemented so many positive lifestyle changes since joining the program together.
I have come a long way since October, 2011 when I first walked into the meeting room in our local community.  WW changed me from reluctant, skeptical, and no motivation to ever lose weight again, to a person who is not only at goal, but determined to stay that way, and confident in my ability to do so!  Oh, and by the way, I also became a WW leader for our local meeting 3 weeks ago!  That's a big turn around!  I believe in this program...it works!
Thank you so much for having the vision to change our lives through this insurance benefit.  I will always be grateful!
Sue Morgan
Rogue Community College At Work Group (March 2011)
After reading some of the success stories on the OEBB site, I felt compelled to toot the horn of Rogue Community College employees in Grants Pass, OR who were in the Weight Watchers first session of At Work meetings. We had 46 employees enroll, and over the 13 week session lost approximately 460 pounds! We have many happier, lighter, and healthier employees; it has been a wonderful experience. 
As an At Work meeting group, we are able to support each other daily; we look forward to sharing our achievements, great finds of low value foods, and sharing insight and suggestions on making it through difficult struggles. 
We have just started session 2 and are off to another successful journey together. 
Rogue Community College Rocks Weight Watchers!
Cindy L Harboldt
President's Office Secretary

Hillsboro Transportation At Work Group (March 2011)
Just thought that I would give you an update on how our group at transportation is doing ... as of March 14th our group of 18 has lost approximately 425 lbs. The first thirteen weeks we lost a total of 376 lbs. We were tops in the Hillsboro School District in total pounds lost.  Thanks and looking forward to another good week!

Chris Niswender - St. Helens School District (March 2011)
I would never have joined Weight Watchers except that it was offered to us free of charge through Kaiser OEBB insurance.  I was so excited after my first week of losing 5.6 pounds and kept attending the meetings.   I have successfully lost 30 pounds!  And only since October.  I planned to just lose 30, but I’m going for a few more.  I have never felt better and never, and I mean never, have I ever worn size 6 and 8 clothing.  I’ve always been a size 12 or 14.  My blood pressure is down and my goal is to keep it that way.  I will keep going to Weight Watchers because I want life time membership so I will keep that weight off.  The meetings are really uplifting and the gals in the group really encourage each other.
Thank you, OEBB, for helping us maintain good health by offering free membership to Weight Watchers!
Betsy Shane - Morrow County School District (March 2011)
I was not able to attend Weight Watchers meetings in my school due to conflicts with my schedule, but chose to join Weight Watchers online. It has turned out to be the best decision ever for me. Keeping constant track online of what I eat and the easy access to finding out point values, I have been able to lose 40 pounds since October 2010. I have many more pounds to go, but feel that Weight Watchers has been my saving grace in helping me achieve my goal. My success has even lead my sister to join Weight Watchers online and start her journey to a slimmer person.

Matt Head - Yoshikai Elementary (February 2011)
I have been aware that I have been overweight for my whole life.  I have always tried to wear bigger clothes to hide my big belly.  When I played on the soccer team in college, I was known by the coach as “the fat kid from Oregon”.  At my 40 year physical my doctor told me that “it will be easier to lose that 20 pounds now than when you are 50.” 
I had finally resigned myself to the idea that I was not going to lose weight no matter what I tried.  Then I learned that my insurance plan would pay for Weight Watchers.  In early October a colleague from my school was going around and recruiting teachers to sign up for the Weight Watchers at Work meeting so that we could have a meeting in our building.  I said “I’m fat and insurance is paying, sign me up.”  At the time, I had no idea that decision would cause a dramatic change in my life.
I attended my first At Work meeting with about 20 of my colleagues in October.  I weighed 216.6 pounds.  I jumped into the program with both feet.  I attended and participated in the meetings, read all of the information provided, and used the Weight Watchers app on my iPhone.  All of the people in my building that are participating in the program have been very supportive.
It has been almost five months and I am seeing a lot of success.  At my last meeting I weighed 185.6 pounds!  I have lost 31 pounds so far.  I have set many small goals along the way.  My first goal was to get under 210 pounds, then it was 200 pounds and now it is 185 pounds.  I have 11.6 pounds to go to meet my Weight Watchers weight goal of 174 pounds.
The biggest change for me has been to eat food in realistic portion sizes.  I still eat everything that I used to, I just don’t eat all of it anymore.  Once I became aware what realistic portion sizes were, it made it very simple to eat the right amount of food.  When I dine out I am not ordering as much and don’t always feel the need to finish everything.  My wife and I frequently will split an entree and share a dessert.  I don’t feel like I am missing out because through Weight Watchers I have come to realize that I was eating enough food for two or three people every day.  Tracking what I eat through Weight Watchers Online and the app on my phone have also helped me realize that the amount of PointsPlus points I am supposed to eat is plenty.
I exercise regularly, something I have always done, but now the exercise is helping me to lose weight, not just keep from gaining weight.  My fitness has definitely improved.  I have only run more than three miles at one time and that was in high school during soccer try-outs.  I now consistently run four miles and recently ran a 5K with some friends.
Not only did I run in the 5K but I won my age group!  Running doesn’t hurt anymore.  I teach PE and am able to interact and play more with the kids than I have been in the past.  I am not exhausted at the end of the school day like I had been 20 extra pounds ago.  I am a basketball referee and I am doing a better job because I am carrying 20 pounds less than I was last season.  I play on a soccer team and I am in better shape than many of the players on my team, something I would not have been able to say six months ago.
Weight Watchers At Work meetings have had a positive impact on me and many others at my school.  Everyone on my staff is very supportive and because there are many people working with me that are participating, our work environment has changed.  There are not as many snacks in our staff room as there have been in the past.  When there are snacks people usually include the portion size and PointsPlus values.  Most of the time the snacks that are now in the staff room are very healthy and easy for people who are working to lose weight to enjoy.  People share ideas that help them be successful and people are very supportive of each other.  I really believe that anyone who attends a Weight Watchers At Work meeting with supportive friends, follows the PointsPlus program and includes exercise will be successful.
I am very happy that I finally was able to say “I’m fat and insurance is paying, sign me up.”

Terry McLean - Hillsboro Transportation (January 2011)
My first weigh in was on 11-30-10 at 337 lbs. Then on 1-11-11 I weighed in at 324 lbs. I have lost 1.5 inches in the waist, 3.5 inches on my stomach, and 1.5 on my chest. There are only three guys, and about 15 women. All the women are a great help to me and an inspiration to my weight loss. Someone is always helping me with recipes. I was nervous to join and afraid that it would not work for me and my life style. With all the help of the ladies and the Weight Watchers group leader it has been a lot of fun. And I look forward to Tuesdays for weigh in day. Also at home my wife lost 18 lbs by doing Weight Watchers with me. Yesterday she gave me a compliment by calling me skinny.
UPDATE January 26, 2011:
I lost 3.2 lbs this last week for a total of 15.3 lbs. That’s almost 2 gallons of milk or water that I was carrying around!
UPDATE March 1, 2011:
21.8 lbs and still going strong! Looking forward to all Tuesday weigh ins.
UPDATE April 18, 2011:
Saturday was family picture day. I bought a new shirt for the occasion. While waiting for the pictures to be done, I went downstairs and saw some pants I liked. I said to myself, "If they fit, I’ll buy them." So I did! They are six sizes smaller. That surprised me somewhat.

Wende Milner - Forest Hills Elementary (January 2011)
When I was asked about my success I had to stop and think; what is it that makes Weight Watchers work for me?  After contemplating this for a while I realize it is not just one thing!  Many factors have come into play.  First the motivation that the program is being paid for by our insurance, and that they see that preventive measures are as important as after the fact medical interventions.  I love that I can go to a meeting filled with other district employees and that we are all in it together.  Also, for me, I am lucky to have a support group in my own school of friends/coworkers that support each other.  It has been great to share recipes and what has been working or not on a daily basis, not just the one day a week meetings.  Most important is being an example for my daughter.  Unfortunately, she inherited my gene pool and not her skinny father.  She too is doing Weight Watchers through OEBB and the Bend-La Pine school district.  I want to be her inspiration to a healthy life style.
Deprivation = Diet.  This is how I always related dieting.  The great thing about the PointsPlus program is this is not the case.  With tracking my daily PointsPlus values, if I want something I can have it.  I just have to be willing to use my points.  During the holidays I allowed myself to enjoy Egg Nog Lattes!  Those were the days I made sure I exercised for additional points and worked my menu accordingly.  I even lost weight at the first weigh in after the holiday break.  Having to track my eating really makes you think about what you are eating and if what you are having is worth using your PointsPlus.  One of the biggest tools for me is the 94% fat free popcorn.  It is my go to for snacking (11:00 every day at school) and I eat it before going out to dinner or special function.  It helps me to make better choices when I am at a satisfied place, and it only uses up one PointsPlus.
Accountability with the scale would have to be the last factor in my success.   Knowing that someone else is going to see where I am, where I have been, and encouraging me to where I want to be.  Since starting on October 11, 2010 I have lost 33 lbs.  I know that right now I am making it work.  Having the group of other people on this journey with me is driving me to make me succeed to my goal.  No matter how much or little each of us has lost, we are all a success because we have committed to the program and are supporting each other.
Eugene SD 4J (January 2011)
Of the groups that reported stats, 101 members have lost just over 526 pounds!

Meadowlark Elementary 15 100 pounds
McCornack Elementary not reported 80 pounds
Ed Center 16 174 pounds
Bertha Holt Elementary 20 241 pounds
Sheldon High School 18 148 pounds
Awbrey Park Elementary 15 104 pounds
North Eugene High School 17 80 pounds

Stacey Zoon - Riverview Elementary (January 2011)
I joined Weight Watchers one year ago. I believe it was January 7th 2010.  I have been on the program 1 year and have lost 60 lbs.  I LOVE it.  It was the icing on the cake when OEBB started covering weight watchers in October on 2010.
I feel healthier than I have felt in a long time. The program works and you never feel like it is a diet.  It truly is just a lifestyle change. I would encourage anyone who is thinking about joining Weight Watchers to join as soon as possible. You will not be disappointed in the program.
I have about 20 lbs to go and I know I will do it.
Lindi F. Overton, PhD - Clatsop CC (January 2011)
I just wanted you to know we at Clatsop Community College appreciate the opportunity to participate in the OEBB Weightwatchers At Work program. We have a great group of people attending the meetings, and it is most helpful to know others are trying to change their lives by becoming healthier.
Lois Tivey is a great leader for our meetings. She has long had a passion for Weight Watchers, and she is very motivational to those of us attending the meetings. We appreciate her work.
Salem-Keizer Public Schools (October 2010)

Starting this past January, you could find a group of about 20 Salem-Keizer Public Schools employees weighing in at a Weight Watchers at Work meeting held at Student Services on Thursday mornings. These individuals got up a little bit early to start their day off with the 6:30 a.m. meeting filled with support and encouragement, weight loss rewards, and handy tips leading to a healthier lifestyle. At the conclusion of the meeting, there was no getting in cars to go to work – WE WERE ALREADY THERE!!  The group (some of whom are pictured above) found that the support system of co-workers and our Wellness Team joining along in the weight loss journey was invaluable. The group hit the 500 pound weight loss mark in June and is now nearly 600 pounds lighter than when we started!  /OHA/OEBB/PublishingImages/2010/atworkww.jpg 
In addition to the weight loss, the employees taking part of the Weight Watchers at Work meeting saw other health benefits including lower blood pressure, less reliance on prescription medication, less pain in joints, no longer requiring a C-PAP breathing machine at night, and more energy! This bled into the entire atmosphere of Student Services – there were less unhealthy snacks around, staff potlucks were filled with many healthier options, active staff activities were planned that got the entire department moving, and employee morale was on the rise.
Starting on October 1st, employees enrolled in an OEBB plan will have a new benefit covering the Weight Watchers weekly meeting fees.  Any of the members in our group would testify to the great results this program can offer! And should you feel like getting up a little early on Thursday mornings, we would love to welcome you to our group at Student Services!

Leah Lyons (October 2010)

"Do your knees begin to shake and ache just thinking about standing in front of your classroom for the day? Is your doctor talking to you about having to take more and more medications due to health issues because you are over weight?
Like a life preserver, Weight Watchers was there for me in my last desperate search to save my life! It was so hard to stand, to move, and even to sleep without being in pain at 377.2 lbs. I was born under weight and I have been eating to make up for it during my entire childhood and adult life!
I have always dreamed of being a teacher with my own classroom and students but it was getting so painful to stand, to move or even to sit down for any length of time. I began to wonder how much longer I would be able to continue to teach because I couldn’t do all that I wanted to do for my students! After leaving my doctor’s office 4 years ago, with his suggestion of joining Weight Watchers and facing some real scary health issues, I was desperate to find a way out of my painful body.

What I found when I went to my first meeting was friendly understanding faces and open arms for everyone, even though I was the most over weight person in the room. I couldn’t believe the program was so simple and easy. I could have anything I wanted to eat but I just had to keep track and keep within my points! I made sure not to look at the big picture of how much I had to lose but focused on making my own goals and rewards. As time passed I learned to make healthier food choices, gained strength and confidences in not only my body but my outlook on life. I stopped looking at being a Weight Watchers’ member as being on a “diet”. I am eating and created a healthy eating and life style for a life time.
Today, my day to day living has changed so much at 240 lbs. lighter! I can now keep up with my students and do all the things that I’ve always wanted to do in my classroom. It is kind of fun when my past students notice the differences in my size and new lease on life. Walking is a passion to me. I am no longer on any diabetic medications, my body no longer hurts just to breath and my doctor couldn’t be happier for me.
I celebrated the day my doctor told me he didn’t want me to lose any more weight! NEVERin my life had any doctor told me that my weight and lab work was great and that they didn’t want me to loose any more weight!!!
I love and continue going to my Weight Watchers meetings for support as we share ideas, tips on healthier choices and even our down falls to learn from. No more stormy seas of obesity are in sight but a life of making healthier choices with a new lease on a life of adventures!"
- Leah Lyons, OEBB Member