Camden native Brandie Johnson can be described as a hard worker in many respects. She graduated from Camden High School in 1999 and then four years later graduated from Columbia College with a B.S. in Business Administration. She has raised a daughter, Madaline, who is now 15. She also manages the office at McCoy Nursing Home in Bishopville.
Johnson also adds to the list of her accomplishments the intimidating feat of losing more than 100 pounds with the help of Weight Watchers. The process began in January of 2010 when Johnson noticed her good friend and coworker Laura Hawkins successfully losing weight using Weight Watchers.
"I could see how much success she was having," said Johnson, "and I knew I needed to do something about my weight." Johnson said she had been overweight most of her life and was worried that serious weight-related health concerns could be in her near future.
Her concern for her health combined with the visible success of her friend inspired Johnson to try Weight Watchers for herself. She started the program in May 2010.
"The first few weeks took some getting used to," said Johnson. "Writing down everything I ate really made me be accountable. I knew I had to measure out food and stick to the program if I wanted to reach my goal."
Along with tracking her food intake, Johnson started exercising five to six days out of the week. She started walking and increased her endurance until she was running three to four mornings each week.
"I also just finished the Insanity Workouts," she commented. "That’s something I could never have done before I lost weight."
Reflecting on the process, Johnson said there were times when she got discouraged, times where she had worked hard and not seen the scale respond. She kept her resolve firm and reminded herself where she had come from and where she still wanted to go. She decided she would not give up.
As of today, Johnson has lost a total of 109 pounds. She attributes her success to the Weight Watchers’ regimen and also credits her program leader Linda Atkinson, along with the other members and weekly meetings for keeping her motivated and on track.
"I would tell anyone who is ready to lose weight to join Weight Watchers," said Johnson. "If you are willing and ready to change your life, the results can be amazing. I look and feel like a totally different person."