Donna was just trying to be a good friend. Her friend's 86-year-old dad, Odus Sikes, wanted to start going to the Clarksville YMCA so that he could use the Therapy Pool and needed a ride.

Since she wasn't working at the time, Donna offered to take him on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. At first, she would sit by the pool, hand him towels, and drive him back home. But after a few weeks, Mr. Sikes asked her if she would also like to get in the pool and exercise with him. With neck and back issues from previous surgeries, fatty liver disease, unfavorable blood work, and neuropathy from diabetes, she thought it couldn’t hurt to try.

Woman exercising

She explained, "I got into the therapy pool and it felt great to move and work on muscles in the water." But Mr. Sikes wasn't finished. He also signed them up for the Weight Loss Program that met every Tuesday.

Donna agreed but didn’t think much of it. She shared, "it all started with me helping out a friend and becoming friends with an 86-year-old man. In return, it has helped both of us."

As a result, the weight loss program helped her lose 30 pounds!

"My numbers had dropped over 60 points on my fatty liver number and My A1C within 'normal' range," she said. "It had been over 20 years since I had a 'normal' reading and ALL of my bloodwork was normal! My doctor said that whatever I was doing was paying off!"

Additionally, she has dropped four sizes and is only taking insulin twice a week instead of four to six times a day.

Donna has continued to live a healthier lifestyle with new motivation and direction. She goes at least 2-3 days a week to exercise with her personal trainer and is eating much healthier. She has learned to create reachable goals and how to practice mindful eating.

She shared, "not everyone has the mindset to do what I did, but they can and are very capable. I did it and I am doing it! You have nothing to lose, but you can gain knowledge, and support and feel better."

Join the Weight Loss Program today at your local center by visiting