As many of you know, I write a blog about weight maintenance called Refuse to Regain with my blogging partner, Dr. Barbara Berkeley. Barbara’s book, Refuse to Regain: 12 Tough Rules to Maintain the Body You've Earned, was published last week and I thought it fitting that I received my copy today, on the one-year anniversary of my life-changing trip to Chicago – the day I wandered almost over my head into three months of media craziness and a year of challenges I never thought I had the strength to face and opportunities I never thought possible.
It’s fitting because as a writer, I’ve seen my byline in magazines, newspapers and online, but never in a book…until today. I wrote the foreword for Refuse to Regain, and seeing my byline after the foreword was almost as thrilling as meeting Oprah. Fitting because had I not been on "Oprah," I might not have met Barbara. Fitting because a year ago, I’m not sure I could have written the foreword. Not because in it I refer to a particular moment on the Oprah show, but because I’m a stronger, more confident person today, thanks mostly to all the people I’ve met this last year and continue to meet in person, in my blogs, other places on the ‘net. People who challenge me, teach me, encourage me, and, yes, even piss me off sometimes.
I blogged about my Oprah experience, if you want to read about it. There are a few photos there, too. I went back to read it again for the first time in a year and even now it’s still hard to believe it actually happened, even though I wear the boots every chance I get. Not the jeans so much. Or the belt. …sigh… I’m really not en vogue, not by any stretch of the imagination. My apologies to everyone who’s tried to instruct me this year in the ways of fashion.
Anyway, it’s what happened next that guided my life to where it is now. As I wrote after the show aired at the end of November:
“I’ve said all along that if my weight-loss story can inspire just one person to take control of their weight and fitness, then telling it in any way I can is worth it. I’m merely paying a debt. I’m paying back the people who encouraged me and helped me reach my own goals. If I’ve inspired someone to lose weight, it’s because I was inspired to lose weight by someone else who lost weight.
“Losing weight, while a solitary physical act, does not have to take place in a vacuum. We all have questions, we all have doubts, we all have victories, both on and off the scale, that we want to celebrate with other people who ‘get it.’ The people who inspired me also answered my questions, calmed my doubts, and celebrated with me. It’s my turn to do the same for others. Thus the challenge.”
This led me to begin this blog, Lynn’s Weigh. Then, after being featured on CNN’s FitNation and being “found” by Barbara, we started the Refuse to Regain blog. What’s funny, though, is that I still get far more inspiration, feedback and learning tools from readers and other bloggers I’ve met this year than I can ever give in return. So a hearty thank you to all of you for your insightful gifts.
Chicago last year was the mother of all trips. Seeing my byline in a book today was the mother of all head rushes. That is, until I see my name as the author on the cover of my own book J Which reminds me, I owe that book some Lynn time today, so I best get to it. I confess, though, I’d rather hang out here on the computer with you guys.