Last year Detricia Woods-Meadows was at her highest weight ever and in pain from arthritis and a torn meniscus. After years of making excuses about why working out wasn’t for her, she decided it was time for a change.
The 51-year-old was used to walking every day to work, but like most people, the pandemic caused a shift to her daily routine. Instead of getting her daily dose of exercise on her way to work, she began sitting around at home. “My mom who is in her 70s was walking more than me,” she says, adding that a knee surgery set her back even further.
“I had recently learned that two people I knew growing up had passed away. One was complications of diabetes and the other one was heart disease, and we were the same age,” Woods-Meadows tells TODAY.
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Walking toward better health
Determined to not be in the same position, Woods-Meadows committed to walking every single day.
“I knew I needed to make a change, but I never felt motivated enough to do it on my own,” Woods-Meadows shares.
Realizing she needed an accountability partner, she called her cousin Anthony. Together the two came up with a plan to motivate each other by sending their daily step counts and holding each other accountable to walk every single day.
After coming across a story on TODAY about Doreen Fox, who was a part of the START TODAY community and lost weight by walking around inside her house, Woods-Meadows decided to join the community as well.
Start TODAY, is TODAY’s community of 120,000 members committed to improving their health through walking and other manageable lifestyle changes.
In June 2022, when she joined the group, she was walking about 5,000 steps a day and slowly increasing her step goal by 500 steps every two to three weeks.
After seeing testimonies from other group members who had met their weight loss and health goals, she realized she