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Balancing act: pastor's wife basks in glow of successful weight loss challenge

Georgeanna Johnson of Owasso is connecting with women all over Oklahoma and the country who say her recent and very public weight loss effort on the “Extreme Weight Loss” reality TV show on ABC has encouraged them in more ways then one.
by Carla Hinton Modified: August 5, 2014 at 3:00 pm •  Published: August 4, 2014
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Scott and Georgeanna Johnson of Tulsa pose for a picture after her participation in ABC’s “Extreme Weight Loss” reality TV show on ABC. Scott Johnson lost 50 pounds when his wife participated in the show, while Georgeanna Johnson lost 165 pounds. Photo provided
Scott and Georgeanna Johnson of Tulsa pose for a picture after her participation in ABC’s “Extreme Weight Loss” reality TV show on ABC. Scott Johnson lost 50 pounds when his wife participated in the show, while Georgeanna Johnson lost 165 pounds. Photo provided

An Owasso woman is connecting with women all across Oklahoma and the nation who say her recent and very public weight-loss effort has encouraged them in more ways then one.

Georgeanna Johnson, 45, recently participated in the reality TV show “Extreme Weight Loss” on ABC. The show featuring her successful weight-loss challenge aired in July and revealed that the pastor’s wife and mother of two had lost a whopping 165 pounds.

In a recent telephone interview, Johnson said she didn’t know how the show would pare her year-long weight loss effort down to two hours. She said somehow the show’s producers did so, showing her learning how to eat healthily and work out, how to complete a gymnastics routine that she dreamed of achieving and — most of all — her big weight-loss reveal.

“It is hard to kind of live your life for a year and they film and you don’t know what’s going to be on TV,” Johnson said.

“I was very happy with it though. I felt like my personality came through. I felt I represented my family and church well. As a Christian, I wanted to represent the Body of Christ well and be a role model that says, ‘Hey, I’m a Christian and I work hard and with excellence,’ and I think that showed through.”

Johnson said an unexpected and pleasant result of the show has been the feedback she has received from other women who said they saw themselves in her weight-loss struggles.

Finding balance

Johnson said she attended an “Extreme Weight Loss” open call in Oklahoma City about a year ago because she felt she needed help finding a way back to the athleticism of her youth and a healthier weight and lifestyle.

“I was tired of being overweight, and I was really kind of frustrated with myself that I couldn’t figure it out. I knew I needed help,” she said.

Johnson said she was a competitive gymnast and cheerleader in high school, but her natural athleticism had been placed on the back burner when she became a “supermom.”

As wife of the Rev. Scott Johnson, an associate pastor at Church on the Move in Tulsa, and working mother of two daughters (now 20 and 23), Johnson said she was the mother who felt she had to be everywhere and do everything for others, with no thought of herself.

“I felt I needed to decorate the locker room and be at every practice and be the mom that made sure kids are fed instead of saying there’s lots of moms — I don’t have to be ‘supermom.’ I can just be a mom who helps here and there,” she said. “For some reason, I felt I had to be the one who took care of everything and just put myself on the back burner. I feel there are lots of moms that do that. They feel this pressure to be perfect, and we can’t be.”

Johnson said she loves being a mother and volunteering for her church and being wife of 24 years to her husband, but she felt the show would help her find lasting success with her weight-loss efforts.

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by Carla Hinton
Religion Editor
Carla Hinton, an Oklahoma City native, joined The Oklahoman in 1986 as a National Society of Newspaper Editors minority intern. She began reporting full-time for The Oklahoman two years later and has served as a beat writer covering a wide...
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Fit Is Well

To keep up with Georgeanna Johnson as she maintains her “extreme” weight loss and healthy lifestyle, go to her website, www.fitiswell.com.

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