Monthly archive for December 2018

Mary Krupski

Mary Krupski

First Place 4 Health has been a huge blessing in my life.  I grew up with a number of overeaters in my family.  By the age of 10, I was following in their footsteps.    In my teen and early adult years, I decided I needed to make a change.  I joined a number of weight-loss groups and experimented with several unhealthy ways to lose the weight.  Motivated by an event or a beach vacation, the pounds came off, but they also came back.  I just kept wishing I could get it right and be free of the weight struggle. In 2006, I was a new believer living in VT, and on fire for Christ. I had three wonderful children and was carrying around about 30 lbs. of extra weight.  God had already freed me from huge struggles with worry and fear.  When I heard about the FP4H program from a friend

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Mary Kloek

Mary Kloek

I began First Place 4 Health when a friend invited me to attend a meeting. My before picture shows a happy face having fun with my granddaughter at the lake, but I was not very happy on the inside. I had no peace about my need to be responsible in caring for my body, God’s Holy Temple. I felt like I was out of control with health issues, and disappointed that I was entering retirement in poor physical condition. My husband has always lived a healthy, active lifestyle. I was concerned that in retirement I wouldn’t be able to keep up with him and enjoy our days together. I suffered backaches, low energy and painful joints from the weight I carried and depression from my inabilities. I feared the physical threat of cancer, because my sister died of cancer at age fifty. I also was threatened with potential diabetes, heart

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Martha Rogers

Martha Rogers

“Nothing else can give you a healthy body, mind, spirit and soul like First Place 4 Health.” When our youngest son and his new bride brought over their wedding album for us to see, I realized for the first time that I had lost control of my weight. For many years our church had sponsored a First Place 4 Health program, but I didn’t want to bother with a regimented program. After weeks of trying to lose with my own plan and not having any success, I decided I needed help. I talked with Carole Lewis, the First Place 4 Health national director, and she convinced me that First Place 4 Health was where I needed to be. I joined in March and by November had lost 44 pounds and reached my goal weight. The regular exercise and healthy eating gave me energy and a new outlook on life. In

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Mark Gutierrez

Mark Gutierrez

My earliest childhood memories are of a chubby little boy. I remember going to the clothing store with my mom and buying ‘husky’ pants. It didn’t really bother me till I got into Jr. High. I remember picking up a paperback my sister was reading that described an “All Protein Diet.” That was my first venture into dieting at only 13 years old. I lost 30 pounds and maintained that weight loss through most of high school. By college, I was dieting again. Years later, I got married and began to try various weight-loss programs-Weight Watchers, NutriSystem, Jenny Craig and Phen/Fen. All of these worked and I lost weight, but sooner, more times than later, I gained it back. I made up my mind that I would be fat forever. My church started a new program called First Place. I remember thinking to myself, “Oh that won’t work; I’ll try

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Machelle Zellers

As far back as I can remember, I have always been overweight. From first grade and through high school, I was teased by classmates. By the time I graduated high school, I weighed about 200 lbs. A few years after graduation, I started on one of those protein shake diets—two shakes a day and one meal. I lost about 30 lbs. and got into a size 16; it seemed to last about five minutes. As soon as I started eating normal food again, the weight came back. I tried many diets after that time. It was the same scenario—lose weight and then gain it back. I usually weighed around 220 to 245 at the highest into my 30’s. I got married at 36 weighing 245. I tried the Atkins diet with success. This time I lost 35 lbs. and then found out I was pregnant. So, I stopped the diet,

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Lynda Willard

Lynda Willard

I have lots more energy and better self-esteem, greater clarity of thought, more peace with my life, and better able to follow God in ministry. I joined First Place 4 Health because I was filled with busyness, but I lacked discipline. I loved and tried to serve the Lord, but did not have strength or stamina to do His will. My eating habits were not healthful and were utterly out of control, plus I did no exercise. I did not realize how large I had become until I really looked at some pictures taken while I was on vacation, and the photos from my brother’s wedding. Then, my doctor told me that my cholesterol and blood sugar were a little higher than normal for my age. I knew that I needed to lose weight and learn how to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Through the First Place 4 Health program, I

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Lou Oliver

Lou Oliver

When First Place 4 Health came into my life, I was 32 years old and a mother of three amazing kids. My husband was pastoring a mission church and a lady in the church started a new program. She invited me, and I thought, “I’m going to have to be a part of this since I am the pastor’s wife,” so here I go. I joined the First Place 4 Health class in 1994, beginning on a Friday night at the church. And the church wasn’t just down the street. It was a one-hour drive away, across the countryside and up and down the hills of southeastern Ohio. So back and forth we travelled every Friday night–me, my husband and the kids. At our first meeting, our leader talked about how this program was going to help us learn to live for Jesus in all areas of our lives. She

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Lisa Rigoni

Lisa Rigoni

Step by step the changes stuck. I was the girl who hated P.E. Running for fun? No way! Spending time in the gym? Yeah, right! My, how things change when we least expect it. I joined a First Place 4 Health class years ago because a friend wanted to start it. “Fine,” I said, but at that point I wasn’t overweight and didn’t understand that weight loss was only a portion of what it was all about. Fast forward a decade or so—I had gained weight, was tired all the time and tried to make light of it. I used to laugh it off saying, “At 5’2” and 174 lbs., I am undertall, not overweight.” Guess the joke was on me. The scale tipped closer to the 200 line than the 126 lbs. still proclaimed on my driver’s license. On my smaller frame, it showed. I wore clothes to camouflage

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Linda Stone and Beth Johnson

Linda Stone and Beth Johnson

When trials developed in her life, she turned to food—causing excess weight gain, knee problems, and other health concerns. Beth Johnson was a 47 year old mother of three, who lives in Kittery, ME. When trials developed in Beth’s life, she turned to food—causing excess weight gain, knee problems, and other health concerns. Beth, inspired by a desire to become healthy and lose weight for her daughter’s wedding, noticed the weight loss and glow of Anne Philbrick. She learned that Anne (who has lost 46 pounds and helped others to so) was participating in First Place 4 Health at Bethany Church. Beth believed in faith-based weight loss, and decided to join First Place 4 Health in the fall of 2006. Since then, her life has become transformed, and now she is helping others to do the same—including her sister. As an act of love, Beth invited her sister, Linda Stone,

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Kim Waters

Kim Waters

A sudden career change and, all the emotions that came with it, sent me into a downward spiral health wise.  I kept up with my exercise, but my spiritual and health walk deteriorated.  I gained weight—I didn’t care about anything health wise, and I wasn’t too sure about myself or why God had allowed me to lose my job in the recreation ministry like He did.  I couldn’t even go over to the gym because of the hurt. I was excelling at my new position.  I was loving the senior adults and they were loving me.  At the end of 2007, the senior adult minister (one of my two bosses) decided to retire.  I held down the fort, so to speak, for a month waiting to hear who Pastor had hired as my new boss.  Then in January 2008, Pastor Ted called me in his office and asked me to

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