Mercy St. Francis Hospital has won a battle in the war on obesity. Fifty-seven people accepted the hospital’s 12-week “Biggest Loser” challenge in February, losing a combined 867 pounds. That’s nearly a half-ton of weight.
“The goal was to help community members obtain a healthy weight and make a lifestyle change to get there,” said organizer Carol Schmidt, nursing administrative assistant at Mercy St. Francis. “We thought we would try a new twist to the popular weight loss challenge and it certainly paid off.”
If you’ve seen the hit TV show, you know the “Biggest Loser” drill. Teams from across Mountain View weighed in frequently and took part in six activities during the three-month period. “We had a scavenger hunt, line dancing and presentations to keep contestants motivated by educating them and providing physical activities to meet weight loss goals,” added Schmidt. Springfield native Marie Pearl, a contestant on the latest season of NBC’s “The Biggest Loser,” even traveled to Mountain View to encourage teams to stay focused heading into the final weigh-in on April 28.
The top team’s members lost an average of 16.4 percent body weight; they’ll divide a grand prize of $840. The winning individual lost 22 percent of his body weight and will be awarded $500. The Mountain View Food Bank is also a big winner; it will receive $340 from registration and other donations.
The winning team and individual will be announced at 12 p.m. Friday, May 2, in the front lobby of Mercy St. Francis Hospital, located at 100 W. Highway 60 in Mountain View. Two other contestants will get special recognition.
Going forward, the remaining 57 contestants will continue monthly weigh-ins. “They’ll be competing to see who among them will lose the most weight by the end of September,” added Schmidt. “Then all contest will begin the new campaign in October with the “Maintain, Don’t Gain’ challenge.” For more information, call Carol Schmidt at (417) 934-7097.