Former Weight: 306 pounds
Current Weight: 211 pounds
Pounds lost: 95 pounds
Height: 5 feet, 7 inches
How long she's kept it off: She started Weight Watchers in July 2009. "I am two-thirds of the way," Norwood said. "I try to think of it in five- or 10- pound increments."
Personal life: Norwood and her husband, Ed, have three children and five grandchildren. "We have been married for 38 years and he has loved me through thick and thin, literally," she said. "I am very fortunate to have him care so much about me." She works as an administrative assistant in the Georgia House of Representatives and lives in Sharpsburg.
Turning point: "On June 2009, I met my sisters in Nashville; I hadn't seen my sister from Memphis in 1-1/2 years," she said. "She is five feet and had lost 60 plus pounds on the Weight Watchers program and had started exercising. The transformation was unbelievable. I promised her that day that I would go to a meeting. I went all right, kicking and screaming all the way." She joined that week.
Diet plan: She has oatmeal or yogurt with shredded wheat for breakfast. Lunch is a frozen meal and dinner is lean protein, vegetables and a salad.
Exercise routine: Her routine includes Richard Simmons DVDs, Nordic Poles and walking. "I've just added hiking to my routine for fun," she said.
Biggest challenge: "My rheumatoid arthritis and the medicines I have had to take to keep that in control -- both are not always conducive to weight loss and exercise," she said. "I am in a weight plateau right now because of a new medicine I take for RA. As frustrating as it can be, I just have to work through it."
How life has changed: "Eight months ago I could hardly move; now I'm walking up to four miles a day. I exercise on the average five times a week and enjoy it," she said. "Having R.A., I also had high blood pressure and was pre-diabetic. Today I am no longer taking blood pressure medication and I am no longer pre-diabetic. It truly is a lifestyle change; I feel like I am not facing an early death from the complications of obesity."
Be an inspiration: If you've made positive changes in your diet and/or fitness routine and are happy with the results, please share your success with us. Include your e-mail address, a daytime phone number and before and after photos (by mail or JPEG). Write: Success Stories, c/o Holly Steel, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 223 Perimeter Center Parkway, Atlanta, GA, 30346-1301; or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Credit: Arvin Temkar
Credit: Georgia Department of Economic Development