Troy group seeks to ‘Take Off Pounds Sensibly’

Published 11:00 pm Thursday, July 26, 2012

TOPS members pictured from left are Ann Collins, Sue Johnson, Becky Harlow, Michelle Meeks, Bertha Meeks, Cheryl Black, Mary Moore, Cary Williamson, Dixie Thomas, Dawn Andress, Mona Bradley and Betsy Gates.

Take Off Pounds Sensibly.

“Sounds like a good idea and it is,” said Cary Williamson, leader of Troy TOPS. “It’s a real good idea.”

TOPS Club, Inc. was organized in 1948 and is the original, non-profit weight-loss support and wellness education organization.

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Williamson said there’s no better way to take pounds off than with a group of like-minded people.

“We are all members of TOPS because we are serious about losing weight,” Williamson said. “And the encouragement and support that we get from each other helps us stay with our plan.”

Troy TOPS has about 20 members and usually about 16 of those attended the weekly meetings on a regular basis.

“It’s like most clubs, some people come and go but, we do have a group that is very committed to losing pounds sensibly and we’re here each week to record the progress we’re making and celebrate with each other,” Williamson said.

The weight scales are accurate to the ounce. The ladies, laughingly, said that sometimes they wish the scales would “fudge” just a little.

“We know that every one of us is not going to drop weight every week, so the encouragement that we give each other is very important,” Williamson said.

Encouragement comes in different ways. Sometimes it’s carefully chosen words or just knowing another is in the same boat. Sometimes it’s the friendly competition among members.

Sometimes it’s the money, even if it’s “play money” that sets the eye on the prize.

The TOPS members are currently earning points that translate to greenbacks.

At the end of each quarter, the members receive a point for every pound lost. At the end of the year, those accumulated points will become dollars for bidding at a live auction.

“We’ll have some really great items up for bid,” Williamson said. “The more weight we lose, the more money we’ll have for bidding. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

Programs on weight loss, healthy menus and nutrition are highlights of the TOPS meetings.

“Through the programs we get a lot of valuable information,” Williamson said. “One suggestion was to keep a record of everything that we eat. That was an eye opener for me. I didn’t realize how often I was eating and why. When I became more aware of my eating habits, I changed them and that has made all the difference in the world.”

The Troy Trotters are an outgrowth of Troy TOPS.

“A group of us get together and walk and we’ve found that it’s fun to move around together,” Williamson said.

There are many ways to lose weight and different ways work for different people.

“But no matter what weight loss program you choose, you need support and encouragement,” Williams said. “At TOPS, we always welcome new members. Anyone who is interested is invite to come by and see what we are doing and decide if TOPS is for you.”

TOPS meets at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesdays in the Lillian D. Green Nutrition Center in the downstairs area of the Colley Senior Complex on Elm Street. For more information, call 808-8500.