I joined MHW in December of 2016 when my doctor referred me. I weighed 278 pounds for a long time, and several of my doctors recommended that I lose weight, but I didn’t really believe them. I had always been a big guy and a strong guy, so to me, it was normal. How could this be bad for my health? I’d had some heart problems, but I didn’t see the connection to my weight. I needed some proof. Finally, I went to apply for a Commercial Driver’s License, and I failed the physical. This was when I spoke to a new doctor who didn’t sugar-coat it. They said that if I didn’t do something about my weight, I would be dead in 6 months. I was dealing with all sorts of health issues at this point. My diabetes was out of control, and I’d been rushed to the hospital because my heart was in such bad condition. I was taking 31 pills a day and 72 shots of insulin each month, and what I realized was that these medicines weren’t making me any better. All the medicines did was keep me alive. I was going to have to take them for the rest of my life if things didn’t change.
I started off trying to lose weight by myself. I lost 15-20 pounds, but my doctor still wasn’t happy, and my health still wasn’t in a good place. I actually thought about looking for a new doctor because I was so tired of hearing mine complain that I needed to lose weight, but he was right. I couldn’t lose any more on my own, though, and I was getting frustrated. That was when I learned about Maryland Healthy Weighs. I came for an Orientation and they outlined the whole program for me. What I like is that it was very scientific. If you follow it, you get the results. You don’t have to figure it all out on your own- they’ve done the research. In the beginning, I didn’t totally believe ALL the rules they had, especially the classes. I didn’t think I’d have time to come in each week, but I figured if I was going to do it, I’d commit to doing the full program, exactly as they said.
Once I started, I immediately saw results. Week after week the weight came down, and my medicines came down, too. That was exactly what I wanted. I also noticed that I had more energy and that moving around became easier. I had given up riding motorcycles a few years back because I wasn’t in shape. I was worried if the bike fell over I wouldn’t be able to pick it back up! Now I know I can get back into riding because of the changes I’ve made.
My advice to everyone is to not give up. People always do diets for a little while and then quit when they get tired. Stick with it. Do the program and it will work. Listen to the Educators. Keep records, even when it feels like a pain. Do your activity, even at the end of a long day when the last thing you want to do is go for a walk. And go to class. Listen to other people who are on the program. They’ve gone through the same things. They really care, and they make you want to care about them, too. They have really good ideas and recipes, and when they make a suggestion it gets you thinking about what you can do differently, too. Even when you‘ve hit your goal, keep going to those Phase 2 classes. They are so important to make sure the weight doesn’t come back.
This program is absolutely worth it. I would recommend it to anyone who is serious about wanting to make the changes and lose weight. It’s full of people who care, and if you listen to them and follow their advice you will see results. Not only have I lost 70 pounds, I’ve kept it off now for more than a year.
Each HMR Program has different average weight-loss results. These are the results we get for people who completed between 12-26 weeks: 43-66 lbs. for the in-clinic Decision Free® plan (1), and 28-37.5 lbs. for the in-clinic Healthy Solutions® plan (2). Average weight loss for the Healthy Solutions® at Home program with phone coaching is 23 lbs. at 12 weeks and 28 lbs. at 26 weeks (3). There is no guarantee of specific results. Results can vary.
1 J Am Diet Assoc 2009; 109:1417-1421; Int J Obes 2007; 31:488-493; J Am Coll Nutr 2005; 24:347-353.
2 J Am Diet Assoc 2009;109:1417-1421; Postgrad Med 2011;123:205-213; Int J Obes 2007;31:1270-1276; Obes 2013;21:1951-1959.
3 Int J Obes 2007; 31:1270-1276; Obes 2013;21:1951-1959