Encouragement and positivity were the most important aspects of the program for Margie.

Margie Arndt found out she was at risk for type 2 diabetes when she had a blood test and her doctor diagnosed her with prediabetes. She says, “At first I was in denial and didn’t believe the results; I thought maybe my number was high because I had coffee right before.” But after getting a call from her insurance company and learning about the YMCA’s Diabetes Prevention Program, Margie thought, “I will see how it goes. I learned they were going to cover the cost of the program and was really impressed.”

Margie started the program with some very concrete goals: to lose a certain % of her body weight, to get off her cholesterol medication and to find exercises that don’t cause pain for her joints. She soon realized, “the program doesn’t just give you advice, it helped me explore different ideas and find what works best for me.” She adds, “The materials were also very helpful to me. I use the Calorie King book a lot and realized I had been making food choices that were very high in calories, so it helped me make different choices.”

Margie said, “The hardest thing for me was to find exercises that weren’t painful. I started with yoga to loosen up my body, and then moved on to use the cross-trainer and now I’m going to the Y three times a week and I walk my dog.” Margie felt her most significant realization came when she discovered, “I used to think if I gained weight I should stop trying. I always thought if you gain, it isn’t working and I should quit. I was so surprised to keep getting encouragement from my group and Lifestyle Coach even when I gained weight.” That encouragement and positivity were the most important aspects of the program for Margie.

Margie says, “the program gave me the tools I needed to change my lifestyle. As a result I’ve lost 56 pounds and I’ve continued to lose weight beyond the program.” Margie is still working on those original goals and finds what works for her is, “I pray and ask God for help, I go to the Y, I continue to monitor my weight so I know when I need to make more changes, and I don’t stress too much about gaining weight because I know I have the tools to keep going.”