TUSAYAN, Ariz. - One of the nation's most recognizable weight loss programs, Weight Watchers, has found a home at the doorstep to the Grand Canyon. The popular program meets each Tuesday at the Grand Canyon Best Western Squire Inn's Zuni Room. Meetings begin at noon. The Tusayan group has, so far, lost roughly 130 pounds all together, according to Greg Bryan, group member and general manager of the Squire Inn.
"It's a program where people who want to lose some weight join together in a supportive group to help and encourage each other," Bryan said. "There's also a person from Weight Watchers, as a corporate (business), that comes in and helps you with your planning and the way you look at how you eat."
While group members are nearing the end of their current 10-week cycle, Bryan said the next cycle is already gearing up and new members are currently being sought.
In order to do the next 10-week session, Bryan said the group is currently seeking interested members who would like to join the group. Twenty to 25 members are needed for the group. There are currently about 16 members of the local Weight Watchers group.
"We each pay $130 for 10 weeks," Bryan said. "It's a very strong support group and the information that's pretty provided really gets you to thinking about what you're eating and to be aware of it as you track it during the course of the day and it's kind of fun."
Those interested in joining the Tusayan Weight Watcher's group can call Loraine Foote at (928) 638-8400.
"And no, you don't stand on a scale and everybody sees how much you weigh," Bryan said. "Your weigh-in is private. Nobody else sees what you weigh. When you succeed, then you share those numbers, like 'I lost three pounds' or 'I've met my five percent goal and I'm working on my 10 percent.' I would encourage people to be a part of it. It's healthy, it's fun, it's enlightening, and it's part of a process of you helping yourself grow and setting goals and working toward them. It's about creating some discipline in your help or enhancing that discipline and having others to help you in the process."
Participants are weighed-in each week, Bryan said.
"You have your personal goals you achieve and those goals are recognized," Bryan said. "Primarily it's about how you eat, using a point system for certain foods."
Bryan himself has lost roughly 15 pounds since starting the program six weeks ago.
"I've got more to go. It's a 10-week program. This is the first time I've ever done it and I've found that it's been very enjoyable and not as hard as I thought it would be," Bryan said.
Originally begun as a health awareness program for Squire employees, the local Weight Watchers group opened up to include members from throughout the community.
"The Squire Inn started this as part of our health awareness program. We opened it up to the entire community when we did a health fair here four, five months ago. People came in from all different medical and health services. One of them was weight watchers. We committed as a hotel to sponsor it and get people to come in from our staff and we had other people from other companies come in to join us. We just need another five to 10 people that want to come in and join us to ensure that the person from weight watchers will be able to come up from Flag once a week to help us and provide things."