It's a team effort to get fit and active during Oak Brook Park District's annual Choose to Lose program. Attracting 31 teams and a total of 102 participants, the 8-week weight loss effort started January 13, and in just three weeks participants have shed over 363lbs.
Choose to Lose is sponsored in part by Adventist Hinsdale Hospital and focuses on providing the support, education, and motivation necessary to create a positive weight loss environment. Participants registered in teams of 2 or 4, and are required to complete weekly homework, weigh-ins and fitness challenges. "We provide a video showing our teams what to expect from the challenge each week," says Mike Delgado, fitness supervisor for the park district. "This allows them to set small fitness goals, and encourages them to add new exercises into their fitness routines."
Homework assignments are designed to help keep teams on track at home. Week 4's assignment challenges participants to design a meal plan that includes a breakfast, lunch, dinner, and two snacks that all fall within specific nutritional ranges.
The flexibility of the program has attracted not only residents, but many Oak Brook businesses have embraced the program and promote it through company sponsored employee wellness plans. AM Castle of Oak Brook has 5 teams participating this year. The overall 8th place team, Team F.I.T. (Fatties in Transition) is a group of 4 co-workers from AM Castle's IT Department. "We're all newbies to Choose to Lose this year," says Ivette Rivera of Bloomingdale. When asked about their team name, Tom Saddler of Romeoville laughed and said "We're in the IT Department, so of course we had to come up with a fitting acronym." F.I.T. teammates have lost 2.58% of their total body weight in the first 3 weeks.
At the end of the 8-week program the team in each division that has the largest percentage of weight loss, as well as the individual with the largest percentage of weight loss, will receive prize packages. For more information on this program, or to follow the progress of the Choose to Lose teams, please visit www.obparks.org/choose-to-lose.