Did you know that Creston is home to the reigning British Columbia Weight Loss Queen for TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly), a 70 year old international not for profit weight loss support group? Our queen, Sharon Ward, lost 100 pounds and gained mobility, improved health, nutritional knowledge, self-control, and self-confidence.
Sharon began her weight loss journey in 1983 by joining TOPS in Dawson Creek, where she lived at the time. When she moved to Creston she experienced difficulty maneuvering stairs to her apartment so she continued her journey by finding Creston’s TOPS group where she became an active member and only found more and more success among friends.
When asked how she accomplished a 100-pound goal, she quietly replies, “Well, it is not easy. I worked hard and I NEVER gave up.” She found a great walking partner and their daily 3 km walk has become a way of life. She learned to recognize and break emotional eating. Keeping a daily journal is especially important. Sharon now humbly accepts the well-deserved compliments but ALWAYS credits the local TOPS chapter for providing support every step of the way – by believing in her even when she didn’t believe in herself.
In the past two years since she first reached her goal, Sharon has learned that losing can be the easy part. Maintaining a goal weight is a new learning experience but she is mastering it well.
Sharon was first the queen of the local Creston chapter. It was with unbelievable excitement that she was chosen to be the BC Queen because of having the largest weight loss (in the women’s division) in the province. Several of her TOPS friends traveled to Nanaimo to be with her at the official crowning at the Nanaimo Arts Centre. From there, Sharon received an expense paid trip to the International Recognition Celebration in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Today Sharon continues her active lifestyle and can be found every Wednesday at 5:00 pm at her local TOPS meeting – there to support and encourage her friends, welcome new friends and maintain her 100 pounds weight loss – just the way TOPS groups have done since 1948. More information can be found at www.tops.org.
Submitted by Jean Chudyk