'UST Weight-Loss Challenge' winners to be announced Wednesday

‘UST Weight-Loss Challenge’ winners to be announced Wednesday

So who won the “UST Weight-Loss Challenge”?

Only a couple of people know at the moment, and they aren’t telling until a celebration and awards ceremony that will be held at noon Wednesday, May 10, in Room 126, John R. Roach Center for the Liberal Arts.

Sixteen University of St. Thomas employees signed up for the eight-week challenge that was sponsored by the university’s Human Resources Department.

Based on the NBC television program “The Biggest Loser” and conducted in coordination with LifeTime Fitness Corp., the UST Weight-Loss Challenge started March 13 and ends today.

Participants used professionally guided diet and exercise to see who could lose the largest percentage of body fat. First place will win $500, second place will win $250 and third place will win $150.

Participants attended three personal-training sessions per week at a LifeTime facility in Eagan or Woodbury, met with a nutrition coach for a half hour each week, and tracked their progress in a lifestyle journal.

A body-composition test and weigh-in was held at the start of the event, half-way through the challenge, and today. The winner, explained Peter Ronza, the compensation and benefits manager for Human Resources, is not necessarily going to be the contestant who lost the most pounds, but who lost the highest percentage of body fat. For example, a person could weigh the same at the end of the challenge as at the beginning, but could have greatly reduced the percentage of fat.

Trainers from LifeTime Fitness conducted the composition tests today and are tabulating the data to determine the winners, who will be revealed Wednesday.

Only the top three will get the cash prizes, Ronza said, but all the participants will be honored. “They really stepped up to the plate; I’ve heard some amazing stories, and we’ll share some of them at the celebration Wednesday.”

All are invited to Wednesday’s celebration and applaud their accomplishments. Snacks will be served at the celebration (but only healthy stuff, no creampuffs).

The contestants who worked out at the Woodbury LifeTime were: Laurie Dimond, Theology; Michael Elwell, Physical Plant; Gloria Hurtado, Service Center; Phyllis Meath, Purchasing Services; Sandy Prince-Black, College of Business; Randall Scott, Public Safety; Lori Shimer, Art History; and Jerry Sweeney, Food Services.

Working out at the Eagan LifeTime were: Katherine Johnson, College of Business; Liz Johnson, Information Resources and Technologies; Patsy Maloney, Student Affairs; Wilfredo Nieves, Food Services; Paula Reed, Physical Plant; John Sailors, College of Business; Dan Strojny, Information Resources and Technologies; and Diane Weber, Residence Life.

The event was held to encourage good eating habits and regular exercise.