Lose for Yourself, Help Others

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Here’s a scary thought from the National Cancer Institute: obesity and physical inactivity may account for 25 to 30 percent of several major cancers.

Something else from the NCI: even a weight loss of only five to 10 percent of total weight can provide health benefits.

Ready to get off the couch now?

If you are, there’s still a chance to join the UWG Wonder Walkers' Biggest Loser Challenge.

So far nearly 20 people have signed up for the Biggest Loser Challenge, said Janet Nichols, a Relay Team member, who is handling the confidential weigh-ins.

Nichols hopes more people will sign up by 5 p.m. on Jan. 28.

At the initial weigh-in the participants BMI is calculated and they receive a wealth of information about diet and nutrition, Nichols said.

“We let them set their own goals,” Nichols said. “The ultimate goal is to win the contest.”

Beyond the 12 weeks of the challenge the goal is to “promote health and wellness,” she said.

The non-refundable $25 registration fee goes to the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.

This is the second year of the Biggest Loser Challenge on campus, but the UWG community has been participating in the Relay for Life for years, Nichols said.

The 2011 Relay For Life of Carroll County begins April 29 at the county’s parks and recreation complex.

Look out for Relay for Life events on campus, including four “dress down days” and a “split the pot” raffle.

The Biggest Loser challenge began with a Jan. 24 weigh-in and ends with a final weigh-in April 18. The winner of the challenge is the person who has the highest percentage of weight loss during the 12 weeks of the challenge.

Send a note to Nichols at jnichols@westga.edu if you want to participate. For more information go to: http://www.westga.edu/~uwgrelay/biggestloser.html.

Nichols said several checkpoint challenges are planned during the 12 weeks. She also hopes to bring in diet and fitness speakers for participants. There will be weekly weigh-ins.

“I learned the importance of portion control,” said Blake Adams, the director of user services in ITS, who participated last year and lost 15 pounds. “The combination of exercise with a balanced diet makes the biggest difference.”