Losing pounds, gaining notoriety
Fairview resident Leslie Nuno had always wondered what very famous women would be like in real life.
She found out when Oprah Winfrey walked around the corner of her Santa Barbara, California, home before filming a Weight Watchers commercial. "She had the biggest smile on her face," Nuno says.
"Thrill of my life," Nuno adds. "She's amazing, actually somebody who I've dreamed I'd meet someday and love her. When you meet a celebrity like that, I hoped she'd be who I thought she'd be.
"And when the cameras were off, she was this high energy and amazing person. It was such a cool experience."
Several clients had gathered at Winfrey's home to film the commercial as part of a Weight Watchers campaign. Nuno, 35, had been part of Weight Watchers before the birth of her fourth child, and then rejoined after the pregnancy. She has lost more than 30 pounds, and kept it off, and had the opportunity to appear in Weight Watchers commercials.
Business had to be done at Winfrey's estate. But between takes, it was quite entertaining, Nuno says.
"We had manicures before the shoot, and I asked the manicurist what Oprah's house was like, and she said it was kind of like heaven," she says. "I got there, and it was like that — heaven. A beautiful view of the Pacific. (Oprah) drove us around on golf carts, told us a bunch of stories. Showed us where she likes to sit, and how she loves the trees. We were there for six or seven hours. We didn't want to leave.
"She was professional, for sure. But there a couple times we just kind of talked. So neat to get to experience that."
Nuno is the blonde in the commercial with Winfrey. And Nuno's Weight Watchers story continued at home in Fairview. Another commercial was shot there, as "the crew kind of took over the neighborhood," she says.
The at-home commercial started with crews arriving at 5:30 a.m. and lasted until nearly midnight.
"I don't expect to have anything that exciting to have happen to me again," says Nuno, a married mother with four kids, ages 2 to 11. She's a native of Hood River who moved to the Portland area about 15 years ago. She and her husband own a small construction company.
"The most exciting thing was I love this program so much, and I had spent a lot of years trying to make something happen (in weight loss). It didn't work or restricted me from the life I wanted to live. I truly love the opportunity to share how much it worked for me. Life is meant to be lived, and if you're being restrictive and missing out on stuff, it's not fun for everybody."
One of a handful of successful weight-loss systems out there, and advertised nationally, Weight Watchers allows clients to eat normally but with points attached to foods. So, you only get so many points in a day or a week.
"I needed something that was a lifestyle that I could keep up with," says Nuno, a Weight Watchers member since March 2016. "I eat what I want to eat, and lots of fruits and vegetables, and I can splurge when I want. I feel like I'm at a healthy size, a healthy weight."
Rather than putting importance on being disciplined, Nuno feels accountable for her health and weight.
"I tell myself that I have a commitment to myself, and I'm going to stick to my points," she says.
Nuno has been featured in Women's Health magazine. See www.womenshealthmag.com/weight-loss/leslie-nuno-weight-loss-success-story/slide/2. It tells of her journey from starting at 189 pounds and losing and maintaining at 159.
And she'll forever be documented as a Weight Watchers member, having taken part in two commericals, including one with Winfrey.
"We've seen it a few times," Nuno says. "It's really crazy. It comes on, the kids freak out, and we pause it and watch it."