Diabetes Prevention Support Center

Real-life GLB Stories - Joe

Success Breeds Success
I’m a retired police officer who’s always loved the active life. I’m also a competitive guy, so whether it was volleyball, softball, bowling, or doing structured exercises at the gym, I always gave it my best. And I was pretty good!

Life, however, has this habit of sometimes getting in the way. The passing of years and some family challenges took their toll. While I maintained my athletic lifestyle, I could feel I was no longer at the top of my game. All too soon, I found myself in my doctor’s exam room with high measurements that should be low, and low results that should be high.

Luckily for me, my doctor isn’t one who merely gives the "lose some weight and be more active" speech and sends me on my way. (Thanks Dr. P!) I needed more because I was already pretty active. He recommended that I participate in a Group Lifestyle Balance session that met in his office. I signed up.

The structure and accountability of weekly meetings with weigh-ins, and the expectation that I monitor my own weight, activity, and calorie intake, were just what I needed. Far from being intimidated, I was actually encouraged to be with a group of people whose stories and struggles were familiar. I realized I wasn’t alone.

My group leaders were informative, empathetic and caring. They dealt with reality and didn’t expect miracles. You don’t know how good it feels when even little positive steps were noticed. This only inspired me to take bigger steps.

Was it always easy? Of course not! Writing down everything I ate sometimes was a bother, but, do you know what? When I didn’t write it down, it was so easy for me to forget what and how much I was eating.

And it works! My blood and body readings moved in a positive direction and I felt better about myself. Participation in my sports activities was easier. The more weight I lost, the more I enjoyed going to the gym.

I intend to maintain the positive changes I learned in the Group Lifestyle Balance Program for the rest of my life. I’ve had some slip ups. You probably will too. But our instructors told us this would happen and gave us strategies for dealing with them when they do happen.

Sometimes it can be hard to succeed on your own. For me, this program gave me the information, tools, and support that helped me to reach my goals for healthy living.