Today is pretty emotional for me.

17months ago I posted the photo on the left. I was 263.5 lbs, not wearing a belt, my pants were so tight I literally had stomach issues as a result. I was on a path to being kicked out of the Air Force for failing to meet fitness standards.

I love what I do – and the thought that I was not going to be able to do it anymore – because of food – pushed me to WW one last time. My career, my livelihood were all on the line. That gave me the motivation to try harder than I ever had.

I started the same way I did every other time. Controlling portions and suppressing bad habits. I kept my eyes on you and watched you work the plan imperfectly – yet, oh so perfectly.

You taught me to not give up.

You showed me the possibilities.

I began to fake it – trying new foods pretending I liked them. When I ran out of points – I stopped eating points. I began to adopt the new foods as a way of life and made healthier choices most of the time.

I kept working the plan.

I kept my eyes on you – and as you succeeded – I wanted to succeed. You showed me that the reward was worth the sacrifice.

Sometimes the success was nothing more than saying no to a cracker – Other times it was a milestone achievement. Together we never gave up.

When I reached the lowest weight I can remember as an adult I began to celebrate – then my leader @weightwatchersrocks1 dared me to just keep doing what I’m doing and to adopt the new changes as a way of life. Even though I was down 63lbs – she’s the one that showed me it was the lifestyle change that I needed to continue to focus on.

I kept with the plan – My career was technically saved at this point, but I could have very easily reverted back by giving in to Complacency.

As I pushed towards a healthy BMI weight the most magical thing happened. The change in my mindset during the last 10 pounds cemented this lifestyle for good. I talk about it often but the journey to the unknown reveals the true secret.

The letter on the bottom right, dated 7/6/17 officially allows me to retire from the military with full honors – on my terms. I will serve at least 2 more years and then make some other decisions but for now the choice is 100% mine!

This letter did NOT have my name on it 17 months ago. Together we accomplished something so amazing – but more importantly we proved to the world that with the right team – victory can be had.

Thank you for being on my team. Thank you for being my #wingman and I’m truly honored to walk this journey with you. I believe in you – just like you believed in me.

I will forever be grateful to this community!

Your Wingman,