COLIN CORNEAU/BRANDON SUN
Rylan Omeljanow gets a hug from mother Theresa (centre) as her teammates Lois Horton (left) and Karen Nickel sign up for the Biggest Loser Challenge on Thursday.
The Assiniboine Kiwanis and Healthy Brandon are bringing back the Biggest Loser Challenge for a third year in a row as a way of providing community members with a little incentive to start making healthier lifestyle choices.
The competition started yesterday as participants took to the scale for their first weigh-in at The Town Centre. Optional weigh-ins will continue to take place every two weeks throughout the competition so that participants can track their progress.
"It’s not a fast weight-loss program, it’s an incentive program to get people to look at their health," said project chair Bev Monk. "We get people together, they support each other and maybe you’ll be lucky and win some money along the way."
Getting off the couch and choosing an apple over a cookie are just some of the easy changes that Monk hopes participants will start doing throughout the challenge.
"Go outside and enjoy the fresh air," she said. "It’s pleasant to be out in the air and in the snow, hearing it crunch under your feet."
The challenge is open to all Brandon area residents over the age of 18. Teams of four were asked to register online at healthybrandon.ca for a cost of $100 per team. A cash prize made up of 60 per cent of the proceeds will be split up amongst the top three teams who have lost the largest percentage of weight.
Monk said this is the first year that they’re having three winning teams.
"The first year we had one team that won, the second year we had two and now for the third year we are having three winners."
All money raised, with the exception of prize money, will be donated to youth programs or sponsorships.
Last year nearly 97 teams participated and Monk said she’s expecting an even bigger turnout this time around.
"I’m just basing it on how well we’ve done in the past."
The final weigh-in will take place on March 21 from 4 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at The Town Centre.
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition January 18, 2013