“Being on the Life! program is definitely working for me. I’m a work in progress, and that’s fine by me. The main thing is that I’m making progress.”

wendy3An unexpected intervention made by the receptionists at her doctor’s surgery came as a rude – but timely – awakening for Wendy.

“I’d gone to the doctor’s for something completely unrelated, but out of nowhere they advised me to take a diabetes risk test. It was a bit of a shock to realise that they must have noticed a change in my appearance! But they did me a favour: for too long I had been humming along, putting on weight and being inactive and unmotivated; in fact I’d gained 12kg in six years.

“I realised it was time to take action. I’d been aware that the men on my father’s side of the family had had type 2 diabetes, but until that point I didn’t realise that I was at risk. The test showed that I most definitely was.

“So I started to take action. I started walking in the mornings with a friend, and I found that having a walking partner really helped me. By joining the Life! program group, I got more partners and more help! I find being part of the group vital. The support from the other people is fantastic and it helps to keep me on track.”

Wendy finds that she responds well to the Life! program’s realistic response to the process of lifestyle modification. “My coach understands that I’m not going to have a great day every day and that I’m going to have lapses, so we take the approach of planning for a bad day. By doing that, I can arrange to have a healthier type of treat when I feel like one – I’m actually still in control.”

The program is working for Wendy.

“I’m still doing the program and I’m definitely noticing positive changes. These days I’m far more active and far less sedentary. I spend much less time in front of the TV and I find that activity improves my mood – I’m happy enough anyway but exercise gives me an extra boost.”

As well as support and encouragement, Wendy finds that the Life! program gives her information. “I’m learning some very valuable stuff, such as the benefit of increasing the amount of fibre in your diet.

“For me, the crucial thing that I’ve learnt from the program is this: once you’ve got type 2 diabetes, there is no going back. Luckily, I haven’t developed type 2 so I still have a choice and my choice is to take action to prevent it. Being on the Life! program is really helping me do that.”