Special to Dixon Patch
Teanesha Bracey knew it was time for a change. The 32-year-old from Dixon had just graduated with a degree in business marketing and saw a world of possibilities before her. Now, it was time to address her weight.
In October of 2011, Bracey weighed 275 pounds. A Type 2 Diabetic, Bracey knew that she was overweight for her 5’4” frame.
"When I graduated I knew it was time to get the rest of my life in order," she said. "I had a goal to get that degree and I did it. Now, it was time to focus on my health."
With unrelenting determination, Bracey made small changes that added up to big results.
"I walk a lot," she said. "I walk during my two 15-minute breaks and during lunch when I am at work. It was easy to add walking since I get bored of exercising quickly."
She also made some changes to her diet. Out went the sweets and an over-abundance of carbs and in came lots of fruits, vegetables and lean meats.
"It was hard at first to give up sweets, since I am such a sweet person," Bracey with a chuckle. "But now I don’t really crave them."
Her hard work has paid off. Since October, Bracey has lost 67 pounds. She is enjoying the new energy she has developed as well as a new pastime: shopping.
"Clothes shopping wasn’t fun before, but now that I can go in regular stores it is much more fun!"
Her biggest challenge has been balancing her weight loss with well-meaning co-workers who have potlucks and parties at work.
"I try to just take a little to be polite, check labels and ask how things are made to help keep me on track," she said.
After consulting with her physician, Bracey is planning to continue her healthy weight loss until she hits her goal weight of 135 pounds.
"Teanesha is doing everything right," said Bracey’s physician, Dr. Sandra Lee with Kaiser Permanente in Vacaville. "She started out small, making lasting changes to her diet and adding in an exercise like walking. It wasn’t a fad diet that helped her make the change. It was her willingness to make a change towards a healthier lifestyle."
Bracey is casual about her impressive weight loss, but she is convinced anyone can do it.
"I just watch my portions and think about what I am eating," she noted. "Once you get it in your mind to lose weight you just have to think about taking it one step at a time. Just put one foot in front of the other and go for a goal. And when you reach that goal, set another one."