Health challenge draws 67 teams PDF E-mail

A total of 67 two-person teams stepped on the scale last week, weighing in as participants in this year’s Hamilton County Health Challenge.
The 100-day competition is now off and running, with winners to be announced at the A’ROR’N Days Fun Run, June 22.

Eight individuals are already winners, after a first round of drawings designed to help participants begin living healthier lifestyles. Brad Bangs, director of rehabilitation services at Memorial Community Health, Inc., said the winners will receive two-month memberships, effective immediately, to either Jazzercise or the Aurora Fitness Center, both sponsors of this year’s challenge.

Winners of the Jazzercise memberships included Shelby Thieszen, Lisa Sullivan, Christina Cerveny and Jordan Timm. Winners of the Aurora Fitness Center memberships were Elisa Foged, Pam Williams, Kelvin Shearer and Maloree Johnson.

Healthwins program

Another new feature in this year’s challenge is an online healthwins program designed to let participants not only track their own progress, but also let them know why they are doing compared to the competition. The user-friendly program ( is offered courtesy of a Kansas City-based health company, Cerner Corporation.

“It was a great turnout,” said Dane Sutherland, a Cerner employee and co-owner of the Aurora Fitness Center. “It’s fun now that folks are starting to customize their team and personal page with photos or funny sayings. I’ve noticed that people are already entering their weights as well.”

One key piece of information Sutherland wanted to share is that it is not possible for participants to register online now that the challenge has begun.
Sutherland offered a few tips for participants to make the most of the online approach:

• Start using your site and customizing it as you go. The more you put into this the more you will get out of it.
• Start communicating with others on the Wins website to incite teamwork or a competitive spirit.
• Please customize your team and personal photo. It can be a fun picture, a quote or and actual picture of your team.
• Start entering in your weight to see how you rank. You are encouraged to enter it once every week or two weeks. Official weights are entered by the commissioner at the beginning and end, but self entered weights will help keep you committed throughout the 100-day competition.
• 1-2 lbs of fat loss per week on average is considered a healthy range. So some weeks you may lose more or less, but the average shouldn’t stay above that for too long.
• Watch for tips and tricks that will be posted on the online tool throughout the competition.

Sara Sutherland encouraged participants to set goals, if they haven’t done so already.

“It takes 21 days to make a habit,” she said. “Lifestyle changes are simple in theory, but not always easy. You have to know what you want and go for it.”

Cerner Corporation used this online weight loss challenge tool with its own associates recently, along with several other communities throughout the United States. To date, 19,400 participants have lost a combined 69,802 pounds.

Prizes this year are $500 for the team with the highest percentage of weight loss. The second place team will receive $300, with $200 going for third. Another $100 will be awarded to the team with the most creative name.

The 2013 Health Challenge sponsors include MCHI, the Aurora News-Register, Jazzercise, the Aurora Fitness Center, Aurora Mall, Jim’s U-Save Pharmacy and Pinnacle Bank.

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