3. Stop obsessing and you will see change
The last time we spoke to Katharine, she had recently completed an outpatient program for bulimia, an eating disorder she struggled with for seven years. "The more I focused on my weight, the worse my bulimia got," she says. "Now I'm more easygoing. I stopped fighting myself and became more forgiving of my body. Ironically, the weight came off naturally through exercise but no dieting."
These days reaching her fitness goals is her main priority-and she's well on her way. "At my last physical, the nurse took my vitals and said, ‘Wow, you must be taking care of yourself! Your blood pressure is perfect. You're very healthy,'" says Katharine. "Hearing her say that made me feel better then seeing an ‘ideal' number on the scale."
4. Don't fight what comes naturally
Katharine's biggest confidence booster, and the reason she was actually excited to get into a bikini this time around for Shape, is her new commitment to exercise (turn to page 62 to see her supercharged moves). Getting started was relatively easy; it was finding the inspiration to keep going that proved to be a challenge. "When it comes to getting to the gym, I have three requirements." She says counting down on her fingers. "One: location. I found a place right down the street, so I have no excuse not to go. Two: timing. I finally figured out the best time for me to work out. If I try to force myself first thing in the morning, I won't do it. But by 11 a.m.? I'm good to go. And three: Make it fun! I've always been athletic. My trainer, George, incorporates things like tossing a football around so I never get bored."
5. Ask for help when you need it
Despite her can-do attitude, Katharine still finds herself battling the blues occasionally. "I've tried writing down affirmations, but thst doesn't work for me," she says. So every Monday, she attends a women's group meeting organized by her church. They begin the session by talking about the highs and lows of the week. "Sometimes I don't even remember what I did," Katharine says, laughing. "This exercise is so cool because it allows me to reflect on where I am in my life, and also to hear what others are going through. When we're done, I feel more connected to the world and not so lonely. It's the best way to start my week.