Not too late to be big loser

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Photo by Airman 1st Class RIDGE SHAN

The Biggest Loser weight loss competition and fitness program run by the personal trainers of the Luke Air Force Base Bryant Fitness Center began Jan. 4 at Luke Air Force Base.

The 6th annual competition lasts from January until April and offers both a kick start to a healthier lifestyle and prizes for competitors who lose the highest percentage of body fat by the end of the program.

“We’re helping people get started on their New Year resolutions correctly and helping them get off on the right foot,” said Sherri Biringer, Bryant Fitness Center fitness specialist supervisor.

Starting on day one, contestants check in with fitness center staff to weigh-in and track their weight-loss progress every two weeks. Each day, a fitness class specifically for contestants will be offered at the fitness center in both the morning and evening. On their Facebook page, the personal trainers will provide weekly plans, workout tips, and open discussions with the contestants. The contestants are free to use the personal trainers on a face-to-face basis at the fitness center whenever needed.

“Some people stick it out and some people don’t,” Biringer said. “Some people are really serious about this and have a goal. I’ve heard some of the competitors talk about how they were going to run a marathon or accomplish other things they’re looking forward to. Those are the people who are going to continue when motivation starts to wane.”

The personal trainers stress healthy weight loss. If they notice drastic weight reductions in any of the competitors above the expected threshold of the weight that should be lost, those competitors may face disqualification.

“We expect a healthy weight loss of one to two pounds per week,” Biringer said. “We’ve had some contestants naturally lose 20 to 25 pounds total and seen some people lose more than a couple of pounds a week, depending on the types of activities they do.”

The workout programs consist of a wide variety of exercise types, including cardio, weight-lifting and high-intensity interval training.

“We’ll be posting workouts on a daily basis, Monday through Friday,” said Simeon Maxwell, Bryant Fitness Center personal trainer and group exercise instructor. “This year we’ll have a greater focus on high intensity interval training workouts, which will help people get to where they need to be.”

The trainers hope the combination of a group atmosphere, competitive setting, and knowledgeable training will motivate contestants to strive for consistent participation and completion of the program.

“Helping to improve other peoples’ lives is part of who we are and what we’re about,” Maxwell said. “Even after it ends, the people who participate in this program can continue to use this initiative in their future endeavors to keep the weight off. I always look forward to this time of year to help folks who come in and want to make an impact on their health. That’s what I’m here for – to support them.”

For those who still want to be part of the program but have missed the initial sign-up, don’t worry. The initial weigh-in for contestants has been extended to Monday. Sign up at the front desk at the Bryant Fitness Center.