For the last 14 weeks, 38 Chapel Haven adults and staff competed to be named “the Biggest Loser.”
Through a competition run by Kim Stack, Chapel Haven’s certified personal trainer (NASM CPT, CES), participants each donated $5 and then had the chance to compete in a weight-loss competition.
Each participant weighed in every week in the Chapel Haven gym with Kim and were ranked according to the highest percentage of weight lost. Many community members work out regularly in Chapel Haven’s gym, and some work one-to-one with Kim on their weight-loss goals. As an extra motivation, Kim posted the rankings on the gym door each week, so everyone could see where they fell in terms of percentage of weight lost.
Staff, community members, and residents all joined in on the fun competition, competing for the chance to receive a top prize – a $150 Amazon gift card, or second place, a $40 gift card to Bed, Bath and Beyond.
And, the results are in! Two competitors rose to the top! Congratulations to Catherine Harris, who took first place, and Shawn Feldman, who placed second, for being Chapel Haven’s Biggest Losers!
Catherine, a graduate of Chapel Haven’s REACH program who now is a community member, living independently in her own apartment, said she lost 20 pounds through the competition.
The challenge “made me feel encouraged, motivated and energetic,” she said with a smile. Joining in the competition was a confidence-builder, and she credits encouragement from her parents and trainer Kim with propelling her forward. “It was very fun. People complimented me and encouraged me,” she said.
Shawn, who won second place, is excited to have a gift card to decorate her new apartment in the community. The contest helped her with her eating habits. “I was eating a lot of junk food before, but now I have not been eating a lot of snacks and now I drink a lot of water,” she said.
Congrats, Catherine and Shawn, you rock!
Chapel Haven will have the chance to compete again when Kim wages another competition in January. Until then, she encourages everybody to keep exercising, eating right and aspiring to be a big loser!
Chapel Haven offers many opportunities for students and adults to stay healthy, including fitness classes, a well-equipped gym on the lower level of the community building available throughout the day, an awesome trainer (Kim), a Crossfit trainer who comes to campus twice a week, and cooking classes focused on healthy cooking. C’mon, Chapel Haven, let’s all be losers!
Story by Mitsouki Garvey-Sanchez, Chapel Haven intern and public relations major at the University of New Haven