International Division Winners (Female)

TOPS Success Stories > 2019 International Division Winners (Female)

Each year, TOPS honors International Division Winners. These members are recognized within divisions based on their starting weights of each year. The member who lost more weight during the previous calendar year than anyone else in his or her division is the winner. A little healthy competition usually provides extra motivation for our members.

Looking for our male or teen winners? Check out the International Division Male Winners or International TOPS Teens.

Female Winners

First Place Winners

Sarah L. - Lost 125.8 lb.
Division 1

At 385 pounds, I realized the person looking back at me in the mirror didn’t reflect what I felt like inside. I taught my son to not talk about doing things, just go do them—and that’s exactly what I did. I used to hate exercise, but I found some that I enjoyed like CrossFit and swimming and went every morning before work. Determined to avoid negativity, I had motivational posters and encouraging statements all around, reminding me why I wanted to lose weight and get healthy. My perseverance and hard work paid off! I don’t need a seat belt extender on airplanes and don’t take as much medicine for my thyroid. I no longer shop in the plus-size section for clothes. My goal is to live to be 100 years old, and I’ve made meaningful lifestyle changes to help me get there.

Becky H. - Lost 89.2 lb.
Division 3

I’ve lost weight many times in past years, but it never stuck. I joined TOPS because I knew I wasn’t getting any younger, and I wanted this latest try to be the last time. There’s so much support at TOPS! It feels like I have personal cheerleaders. I eat healthier and watch portions. I completed my first 5K on Thanksgiving last year. I cried as I was finishing because I was never able to do anything like that before. I can hike now and climb stairs without huffing and puffing. Thank you, TOPS!

Lisa H. - Lost 77.8 lb.
Division 4

After much prayer asking for help with my weight loss, I noticed the information on TOPS meetings in the parish bulletin and that the chapter met at my church. Along with the accountability of weekly weigh-ins, my TOPS family became my support and encouragement. I started paying attention to everything that went into my mouth, drank water and walked regularly for exercise. Not allowing myself any excuses, I attended every meeting. Instead of rewarding myself with food, I bought smaller clothes and immediately donated the bigger sizes to charity. There was no going back! I had to maintain my current weight to fit into my clothes. I’m now the Weight Recorder, and I’m giving back the support and encouragement that I received. If I could do this after 20 years of yo-yoing, you can too!

Debbie H. - Lost 31.5 lb.
Division 5

At 60 years old, I thought I was bound to be stuck at the weight I was. I’d taken a little off, but it was a battle to stay on track. My sister asked me to join TOPS with her. Going to weekly meetings kept us focused and determined. Weighing in and having our progress monitored helped keep us accountable. We were given food charts and learned about healthy eating. Our chapter distributed water beads to track our intake of water. We were encouraged to walk and exercise at home. There was a never-ending flow of information from our energetic and informative leader. The entire group was always encouraged to share what worked. I’ve been motivated and supported with ongoing encouragement from this amazing group of people. I met my goal weight, and I’m at the lowest weight of my adult life.

Jade S. - Lost 99.2 lb.
Division 7

For as long as I can recall, I’ve had a very unhealthy relationship with food. I used it as a coping mechanism. I was very bubbly and outgoing, but I wanted to hide in my skin. I lost more than 120 pounds for my wedding; and then I got complacent. I gained all that I had lost and more. Two years ago, my mother, sister and stepmom asked me to come to a TOPS meeting. The scale said my weight (unofficially) was 434 pounds. I was fat, unhealthy and miserable. I decided to fight like I’ve never fought before. I wanted my life back. I’m so encouraged to keep going. Even through the COVID-19 pandemic, I’ve stayed the course. I’m looking forward to what’s in store for me in the coming year!

Second Place Winners

Janet N. - Lost 111.8 lb.
Division 1

I saw an advertisement in the newspaper about TOPS. I called to get information about the meeting and the Leader I talked to was so welcoming. When my husband and I got to the meeting, the whole group came down the hall to greet us. We knew most of the people, and they were so happy to see us. My husband, Ralph, and I joined that day. It’s something we do together, and it has brought us closer. TOPS is a great organization, and the chapter I’m in couldn’t be any better.

Dee T.C. - Lost 120.8 lb.
Division 2

This has been a lifelong challenge as far back as I can remember. In 2018, we moved to Parksville, and it was the best thing ever—new life, new home and early retirement. But with retirement came weight gain. Right after Christmas that year, I decided I was going to make losing weight my job. I went to my first TOPS meeting in January 2019, and it was a wonderful experience. I wasn’t a newcomer; I was a part of the team right from the get-go. I focused on walking, swimming and calorie counting. I was hitting goals, losing pounds and my sash was full of medals of pride. The encouragement and support from my chapter can’t be described. Yes, there were laughter and tears along the way, but more importantly, there was always support.

Donna S. - Lost 80.2 lb.
Division 3

My journey with TOPS is a long one. In 2002, my doctor flat out told me to lose weight or it would kill me. He suggested I find a support group and get serious. I found TOPS and was instantly surrounded by friends. My first year was a success, but then I got sick and had to have surgery. The pounds slowly crept back until I was heavier than before. You know what? No matter what I did, my TOPS pals stayed with me. They encouraged me, cried with me and laughed with me. I started counting calories, slowly began exercising, kept a food journal and drank lots of water. My TOPS pals made the journey with me from start to finish and never once gave up on me. They’re my best friends, and I couldn’t have done it without them.

Deborah R. - Lost 66 lb.
Division 4

I was in TOPS years ago and always had success with the program. Then life happened. I fell back into bad habits. In 2018, my oldest daughter announced that we would have our first granddaughter. Our youngest daughter was also getting married at the end of 2019. At that point, I made up my mind that I wanted to live a long and healthy life. I wanted to look great in the wedding pictures, so I went back to TOPS. My biggest supporter is my husband, Kevin. After several weeks, I even convinced him to join me on the weight-loss quest. COVID-19 hasn’t been a good time for me, but knowing I’ll get back to my chapter is all I need to get back on track. Thanks so much for the recognition. Believe in yourself!

Debbie D. - Lost 31.4 lb.
Division 5

I came to TOPS in 2018, and I’m happy to say that I reached my ideal weight. I knew I had to change my eating habits to make my goal. I started eating more fruits, vegetables and fish. I’ve almost turned vegan. I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been in my life! I walk marathons, and I must say that I enjoy every bit of it. It’s hard, but you must stay focused and positive. Believe in yourself! Thank you to my TOPS chapter for the calls and encouragement everyone has given me. I’m exactly where I should be.

Pamela C. - Lost 74.2 lb.
Division 7

I’ve been in TOPS for about six years. I’ve struggled with my weight my whole adult life. I started to focus on portion size and watched my carbs. I gave up all sugar in food and drinks and recorded my food intake. The support that I received from my TOPS family was the best part. They never let me quit and they encouraged me to keep fighting. I couldn’t have done this without them. I’ve come a long way, and I know that every pound counts.

Kimberly K. - Lost 141 lb.
Division 9

My journey has been an ongoing one. I was a Division 7 winner about 10 years ago and have had many ups and downs since then. I was diagnosed with uterine cancer in 2018. I needed to lose around 100 pounds in order to have my surgery. I relied on the support of my TOPS friends and made it to that goal. I had my cancer surgery, along with a gastric bypass, in May 2019. I’m currently cancer-free and still working on losing weight. I know I’ll get to my goal with the support and help of my TOPS chapter and friends.