Originally created 06/20/00

Slow, steady weight loss best for participant



Forget the one-piece bathing suit and the tummy-concealing tankini. Cathe Beebe has opted for a blue bikini.

One of the first things Mrs. Beebe said when she started the Weight Loss 2000 program at the Medical Weight Loss Center of Augusta was that she was not bikini material.

Now, four months later, Mrs. Beebe is strutting around her back yard in a two-piece bikini she never thought she'd wear.

"I haven't worn it other than in the back yard," she said. "I am not going to lose my husband over it."

Mrs. Beebe, who has been working with Dr. L. Brooks Green at the Medical Weight Loss Center of Augusta, has lost 2 pounds in the past month, bringing her total loss since February to 11 pounds.

Although 2 pounds may not seem like much to lose in a month, Dr. Green said he is proud of Mrs. Beebe's progress.

"I think she is at a really good weight now," Dr. Green said. "She wanted to be at 140 to 150 pounds, and she's currently at 158. She's done very well, and I am very pleased with her under the circumstances."

When Mrs. Beebe joined Dr. Green's weight-loss program, she was suffering from several medical conditions, including high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart problems.

By exercising more and eating healthier, Mrs. Beebe was able to improve her overall health - something Dr. Green says is a big accomplishment.

She is doing so well, he envisions her completing his program within two months. Until then, she will continue to take the prescription medication Xenical, a fat blocker, and make monthly visits to Dr. Green's office, where she is weighed and measured and discusses her progress and roadblocks.

Mrs. Beebe said the biggest compliment she has received was from her 25-year-old daughter, who said she looked "awesome."

Mrs. Beebe said she was surprised that she lost 2 pounds because she had not been focusing on her diet while she was vacationing with her oldest daughter.

"I ended up going to Florida and was on a diet vacation for two to three weeks," she said. "I love candy apples, and I treated myself."

Mrs. Beebe said toured a candy factory in Savannah that offered samples.

"It's a miracle that I didn't gain anything," she said.

To lose weight, Mrs. Beebe exercises 30 minutes, seven times a week. Her routine includes 10 minutes on the treadmill, 10 minutes of floor exercises, then another 10 minutes on the treadmill.

About the series

The Augusta Chronicleis following four people who volunteered to go public with their battle of the bulge by participating in a weight-loss program. We offer an update on one participant's progress each Tuesday.

Today is our fourth follow-up with Cathe Beebe, a stay-at-home mom who has lost 11 pounds in four months. She is working with Medical Weight Loss Center of Augusta.

As we follow our participants' progress each week, we'll provide information that you can use in your own battle to lose weight.

This week's health tip

The following advice comes from the Web site http://www.oxygen.com. The site is dedicated to promoting health and fitness for women. In addition to tips about exercising, the site also has a chat room, online shopping, newsletters and stories.

Whether your exercise goal is to control your weight or just to feel better, becoming physically active is a step in the right direction. Here are five tips that can help spare you from injury when working out.

Follow a gradual approach to exercise to get the most benefits with the fewest risks. If you have not been exercising, start at a slow pace and as you become more fit, gradually increase the amount of time and pace of your activity.

Exercise at a comfortable pace. For example, while jogging or walking briskly you should be able to hold a conversation. If you do not feel normal 10 minutes after stopping exercise, you are working out too hard.

Vary your activities so you don't get bored with any one thing.

Exercise regularly to gain the most health benefits.

Challenge yourself. Set short-term as well as long-term goals and celebrate every success, no matter how small.

Reach Barnini Chakraborty at (706) 823-3332 or barnini.chakraborty@augustachronicle.com.