“Get Fit Challenge” 2020 came to a close during the COVID-19 crisis, so the only contestants who weighed in for the final week were the top three men and women.
Doyle Community Center staff used the previous weigh-in data to determine the standings of the other contestants.
This year, male contestantslost a total of 1,004 pounds and female participants lost 1,097.6 pounds, said Mike Liston, director at Doyle.
Paul Preston finished first in the men’s division by losing 20.89 percent of his original weight.
Preston joined Get Fit to get into better shape and lose a few pounds with a group of others, including Robert Lewis and Ron Zimmerman
“It was a friendly competition,” Preston said. “Plus, I figured it would be a better way of staying committed.”
Preston said he and his wife changed their eating habits and started walking. He hopes to continue that routine
“I’m going to try and commit myself to still walking three or four times a week,” he said.
Mike Patrick finished second, losing 17.13 percent of his starting weight.
Patrick had taken part in “Get Fit” in the past, but this time, he took it more seriously.
“Something was different this year,” he said. “I decided I was just going to do it.”
Patrick has two daughters, ages 4 and 2, and his wife is pregnant.
“I needed to get my butt in gear and get back into a healthy lifestyle,” Patrick said. “I did it for my family.”
Patrick started making healthier food. His wife loves it and their children eat what they eat, so it’s better for everyone.
Their meals now have limited processed food and far more natural food.
“It wasn’t really that hard,” Patrick said. “It’s delicious food.”
Patrick also exercised using the Doyle 24-hour pass to work out before going into his early morning job at the Sturgis Hospital emergency room.
To keep the weight off and lose more pounds, Patrick is planning to stay with the same routine.
Sue Wegner finished first in the women’s division, losing 19.4 percent of her of her initial weight.
“I haven’t done the challenge for a few years,” Wegner said. “But I need to have knee surgery and wanted to lose some weight.”
Because of a “bum knee,” Wegner said she focused on her eating habits, choosing a low-carb, high-protein diet.
Wegner wasn’t directly in competition with anyone else in the challenge, but her aunt, Bev Greshaw, participated, which made it more fun.
“I hope to lose some more weight. I plan to watch my diet and be more active,” Wegner said.
She also plans to undergo knee surgery.
Stacy Gagnon finished second, losing 17.96 percent of her start weight.
She has participated in “Get Fit” in the past, but in February 2019, she got hurt and wasn’t able to finish the challenge.
Because of the injury, she was in walking boot for the next 10 weeks. Being immobile made it difficult to keep off weight, Gagnon said, so her motivation for this year was to get back in shape.
“It’s a healthy competition, Gagnon said.
She joined with a group of friends, Faith Hopper, Marty Diller and Eliza Johnson. And because she knows so many participants, it was fun to see how others were doing.
Exercise was a big factor in the “Get Fit” journey, Gagnon said. She walked indoors at Doyle when the weather was inclement and was invited to Radiant Women’s Fitness at Radiant Life Church. The weekly dance class has been a lot of fun, she said. When they could no longer meet, the group posted workouts online.
Gagnon also is working toward a 5K run later this year. She is using a training app to help stay on task.
“I surpassed my (weight loss) goal,” she said. “I am feeling better, not just physically, but also mentally. I realize that I can do this.”