Having the time of their lives | TheUnion.com

Having the time of their lives

Carolie, 66, and Bob Brenan, 71, moved to Nevada City 14 years ago from the Los Angeles area. Married for 47 years, they have three children and three grandchildren, with a fourth on its way.

Bob’s recent medical scare created a sense of urgency about getting fit. Since September, Bob has lost 35 pounds and 21 inches; Carolie, 37 pounds, 39 inches, for a current total of 72 pounds and 60 inches.

Both have maintained a steady weight loss despite Bob’s frequent business travel and Carolie’s trip to New Zealand with her Sweet Adeline group.

“For years, I’ve walked around a dishonest woman,” Carolie jokingly says. “I’ll be so thrilled when my weight and driver’s license match.”

Even so, it hasn’t been a straight downward line. Both suffered occasional lapses. Before the lapses turned into collapses, though, they helped each other reconnect with their fitness goals.

“Working together and not having to think of two menus made all the difference. Simple dinners and long walks together work for us,” Carolie reports.

Bob concurs and adds: “Both Carolie and I tried various ‘diets’ but always slid back to our old habits. Advertisements suggest a pill to curb your appetite, a high protein drink in place of meals, or just eating certain types of foods will do the job.

“Now we know that what it takes is a desire to change old eating habits. What matters is what you eat but also how much you eat of the high-calorie foods. Salads with lots of veggies and a lean protein have become dinner staples. Success is built upon recording what we eat and reducing calories.

“But,” he adds, “even that is not enough. We have learned that to really achieve weight loss, we must exercise. Besides walking, we’ve engaged a physical trainer to teach us how to tone up our muscles. Lastly, we learned that stepping on the scales each morning keeps us focused.

“For a long time,” Bob says, “I looked in the mirror and told myself I was fat and that tomorrow I’d start losing weight, not knowing exactly where to begin. Today, I see a slimmer, more healthful body and I can say ‘I feel great!’ Both Carolie and I enjoy positive comments from friends who notice the difference.”

Carolie and Bob are aware of their own mortality.

“And,” Carolie asks, “what better use of our remaining time than taking care of our bodies?”

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