Young Diabetic Changes Her Life

Submitted by: Carole Laney

Terri's Success Story

A young female in her mid thirties came to see me about losing weight. She was extremely frustrated with her inability to stay motivated and consistent. The first thing I asked her was “why” she wanted to lose weight. She explained her past history of diabetes and her need to make some positive changes. To best paraphrase her story, the young woman explained that ever since she was in her teens she had continuously put on weight. She needed to do something now!

I was excited because she now had the ammunition to motivate herself and achieve a goal. I asked her if she was willing to commit to following my 8 simple guidelines in an Eight Week Transformation Class. “Doing this will have numerous benefits, I explained, You will become much more focused on the results you’re trying to create and you will see and feel a dramatic difference, replacing unhealthy habits with healthy ones.”

So we designed her plan. Her short term goals, measurements, body fat %, etc. were monitored every week to keep her on track. Her goal was soon becoming a reality that provided her the personal self-drive, motivation and discipline to follow through with the exercise prescription on a daily basis.

When those challenging days arrived, she always remembered what I had consistently stressed to her. “The days you don’t feel like it, are the days you need it the most!” With those words, she had the determination not to ever skip a workout or overindulge.

Exercise changed Terri's life and here's what she had to say.

“In 1983, I was 13 years old. I was a normal teenage girl, happy, going to school and playing sports. In February of that year, my life was forever changed. I had not felt well for many weeks. I had been drinking several gallons of kool aid and pop every day. I was going to the bathroom several times in the middle of the night. I had lost energy and a lot of weight.

My parents thought that I had the flu. But when I was not getting any better, we went to see the pediatrician. The doctor at first asked me questions about how I was feeling emotionally. I think that he thought that I was anorexic. I was 5 foot 5 and 75 pounds. The doctor told my parents that I needed to be admitted to the hospital. I went directly to Akron Children’s Hospital.

On February 8th, I was diagnosed with Type I diabetes. My pancreas was no longer producing any insulin. I was put immediately on insulin shots. I was in the hospital for 10 days learning about diabetes and how I would need to care for myself. From that day on, my life has never been the same.

An average day of managing my diabetes consisted of taking 4 shots per day and do finger pricks 4 times or more a day to monitor my blood sugar levels. Through the 4 years in high school, it became an issue to manage my diabetes. My blood sugar levels were never consistent. I was up and down. I was often angry that I had to deal with this problem. Sometimes I even tried to ignore that I had diabetes and would refuse to take care of myself. I wanted to be like everyone else, and it just did not seem fair.

When I went away to college, my attitude about my diabetes was getting progressively worse. It became increasingly difficult to manage my diabetes. I had gained weight each year of college and had topped out at 180 pounds. My health was deteriorating and I felt awful both physically and mentally. The negative feelings that I was having about myself were of disgust, that I had let myself get into the situation.

After getting married in 1996, I decided that I was tired of the way that I looked and tried to find ways to drop the weight. I started by portion control and light forms of exercise. I dropped about 15 pounds just by doing that. I knew that I needed to exercise as well as portion control, but the motivation was not there. I tried everything from exercise tapes to not eating. This was not helping my overall health, which continued to fluctuate. I was never consistent with working out. I would go for a week and then give up. I had always found a way or excuse for not exercising.

In 2003, on the advice of my endocrinologist, I joined a local workout center. I worked out every day for 30 minutes. I worked out from 2003-2004. By January of 2004, I had lost another 15 pounds, but I was just maintaining. I was still not seeing results. I was just maintaining. I was becoming increasingly frustrated with my weight.

In the summer of 2005, I spoke with my doctor. I was at that time taking Lipitor for high cholesterol and Previcid for acid reflux. I was in a very depressed state of mind. I was completely frustrated and ready to give up. She suggested to me that I start to do weight training. I was not pressing my body enough. I needed to build muscle, and with the way that I was working out, I was not toning or building muscle. I was extremely frustrated. She could tell that it was getting to me. She was very concerned about my emotional well being. She suggested that I join a gym. If I started a weight training program, she thought it would help to get results that I wanted. She told me to think about it, and look into getting a gym membership.

Just about that time, newspaper articles were being published about a GUNS & HOSES event with the Medina Police and Fire Departments. Carole Laney was featured in the article. Her ad caught my husband’s eye and he suggested that I contact her.
On July 7th, 2005, I got up the courage to call. I was telling myself that this was probably not for me, but I would just call to see what she had to say. I thought to myself that she probably would not have room in her class, it would be too expensive, and I really didn’t need to do it. Excuses, excuses and more excuses!

When I called, Carole was so bubbly and perky. I told her my story and situation. She listened and understood both my physical and emotional issues. She asked me to come to her studio to hear her presentation. I told her that I would come and listen, but I was still skeptical about the whole idea about working out and exercising.

On July 9th 2005, I met Carole for the first time. I listened to her for the hour long presentation, and realized that she was very knowledgeable about health and fitness. She was interested in helping me find a balance for my health situation as well as my emotional wellness. She weighed and measured me. I weighed 140 pounds and had 31% body fat. I will never forget what she said to me at that initial meeting. She said, “You will be a quick fix. You are on your way. We just need to tweak you. It will be great!”

The following week I joined her Eight Week Transformation Class. I can say without reservation that it was the most transforming time of my life. During the eight weeks, I learned the simple tools about managing my health. It has been an eye opening experience, because I never thought that I had the strength or motivation to change my lifestyle. I have dropped down to 125 pounds and have 15% body fat.

With help and support, I have drastically changed my life. I learned about how to work with food. I have totally changed my eating habits. I use food as fuel for my body. I consciously think about the food that I am choosing. I make choices based on what is going to be best for my overall health. I have built strength and muscle with consistent workouts that target specific muscles. I have decreased the amount of insulin that I take each day by 75% since I began. My average ranges for my blood sugars have gone from 180 on average to 120. They are the most consistent they have been since I was diagnosed. My cholesterol had gone from 184 down to 124. I have gone off Lipitor for high cholesterol and Previcid for acid reflux. My body has taken on a toned and fit shape.

For the first time in my life, I feel proud about the way that I look. I have a new understanding of what good health feels like. I never thought that I would feel this good about myself. I enjoy working out. It makes me feel great. I work out 6 days a week, using both weight training and cardio. It doesn’t even seem like work.
My self-esteem is at an all time high. I never thought that the results I made would have ever happened to me. I get compliments about how I look. My husband is so proud of the work that I have done; he sometimes can’t believe how far I have come in my journey. I am so excited about what I have done.

Carole has given me the guidance and support that I needed. I will always be grateful for her positive inspiration. She believed in me when I did not believe in myself. She knew that I had the inner strength to overcome and work through the health obstacles. Carole has led me on my journey to new and continued healthy lifestyle.”


Terri Before


Terri After