May 28, 2019
On Tuesday, May 21, the eighth annual Fort HealthCare Slimdown Challenge ended. Over 660 participants spent six weeks developing healthy habits. In addition to seeking motivation to live healthier and more active lifestyles, this year’s participants reported a combined weight loss of 1,244 pounds. The Fort HealthCare Slimdown Challenge is free of charge each spring and open to all community members as part of an overall effort to promote health and align with Fort HealthCare’s mission and vision, which states, “To improve the health and well-being of our community.”
From mid-April to late May, 271 participants lost an average of 4.6 pounds each, with “healthy” weight loss considered to be one or two pounds per week. Nineteen participants lost over ten pounds, seven participants lost between 15 and 20 pounds and three individuals lost over 25 pounds. The most weight lost by an individual was 34 pounds by Mary Darnell. Other top weight loss participants included Lyle Farnsworth, Scott Weberpal and Tylynn Vidar. Out of the 387 individuals who completed a final weight-out, 34 participants moved to a healthier BMI category. Body Mass Index (BMI) is a commonly used measure of body fat that could strongly correlate with various metabolic and chronic conditions.
While the Slimdown Challenge monitors weight loss, it is less about weight loss and more about the quality of life gained through making healthy improvements. Traci Wilson, Fort HealthCare’s Community Programming Specialist says, “This year’s Slimdown Challenge was less about weight loss and more about the person’s overall health and well-being. Maintaining a healthy weight through nutrition and exercise is an important component of one’s overall health, but being healthy is so much more than that, which is why we put a greater emphasis on other health topics besides total weight loss. Through weekly education, mini bonus challenges, and optional health screening opportunities, we were able to inform participants and encourage them to recognize other lifestyle factors that may also be contributing to their overall health, such as stress, sleep and other important numbers such as waist circumference, cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure.”
Everyone that actively participated was eligible for prizes, provided by Fort HealthCare and through the generosity of Tomorrow’s Hope, which aims to support activities that have a direct impact on individuals who are touched by various life-limiting diseases. Fort HealthCare would like to give a big congratulations to all who participated, especially this year’s prize winners who were selected:
Completed all weekly tasks (5 winners) – Emily Shepley, Lynn Anderson, Darcey Hein, Maggie Nelson & Sharon Schweitzer.
Lost 1-6 pounds (5 winners) – Suzanne Blair, Jaime Worthington, Carrie Schwartz, Ashley Kuehl & Jill Smith
Lost 6+ pounds (5 winners) – Heide Stein, Brian Neumeister, Tiffany Reysack, Jeremiah Thomas & Jodi Dooley
Lost or maintained weight (within healthy BMI) (5 winners) – Kellie Todd, Tammy Nelson, Debra Landowski, Heidi Gempler & Nicole Mepham
Other prizewinners throughout the Slimdown Challenge included:
Weekly Challenge Winners (12 winners) – Katie McIntyre, Cyndi Braunschweig, Andrew Ascher, Christina Bramley, Jennifer Hauser, Janette Berry, Denise Lange, Sabrina Ojibway, Jason Benisch, Laurie Meyer, Claire Tidwell & Lois Mach
Weekly Bonus Challenge Winners (12 winners) – Jori Brunner, Rebecca Brown, Misty Renz-Sanchez, Lois Mach, Julie Lord, Suzanne Blair, Cheryl Johnson, Danielle Schultz, Lisa Watters, Leigh Froelich, Christine Helgeson & Karen Armstrong
30 Day Challenge Winners – Rebecca Brown, Sarah Spack & Karen Armstrong
The Slimdown Challenge is one of many Fort HealthCare opportunities that foster partnerships between local workplaces and community coalitions. Another thank you to the Cambridge Wellness Collaborative, Creek Healthy Initiative Coalition (CHIC), Fort Healthy, Jefferson United Motivating People to Wellness (JUMP), Lake Mills Wellness Coalition, and Working for Whitewater’s Wellness (W3) coalitions for rallying their communities around healthy behavior change.
Participating local businesses and schools included Abendroth Water, Anytime Fitness-Jefferson, Badger Bank, City of Whitewater, Deerfield School District, Fort Community Credit Union, Fort Atkinson School District, Jefferson School District, Johnson Creek School District, Lake Mills School District, Palmyra-Eagle School District, and Premier Bank.
A special thank you goes to Anytime Fitness-Jefferson and Blackhawk Fitness for offering discounted/free gym memberships for the duration of the Slimdown Challenge.
An additional thank you goes out to City of Jefferson, USA Karate and Anytime Fitness-Jefferson for offering free exercise opportunities for the “Slimdown Saturday” offerings for participants.
Lastly, 4 UW-Whitewater students were instrumental in helping with the 2019 Slimdown Challenge, and helped create content. These individuals are Allison Butler, Taylor Covert, Alyssa Giebehhausen and Brittany Decker.
Fort Healthcare offers the Slimdown Challenge and other programs throughout the year as part of an overall mission to improve the health and well-being of the community. Through programs such as the Slimdown Challenge, residents encouraged to become active participants in their own health and well-being, all contributing to Fort HealthCare’s vision to be the healthiest community in Wisconsin.
For more information on Fort HealthCare Community Health and Wellness initiatives and the County Health Rankings, please visit FortHealthCare.com/Community-Coalitions and CountyHealthRankings.org. Check out Fort HealthCare on Facebook at Facebook.com/FortHealthCare.
About Fort HealthCare
Fort HealthCare is committed to improving the health and well-being of our communities, with a vision to be the healthiest community in Wisconsin. As the leading healthcare provider in the region, it is our goal to reach as many members of the community as possible with health and wellness messages, providing tools and resources to help individuals improve their health and quality of life, while collaborating with several partners to positively improve the population’s health overall on a long term basis. For more information, visit FortHealthCare.com.