Petersburg Parks and Recreation Department has begun its own version of the Biggest Loser which is called Losing Big Petersburg.
The contestants for this competition will take part in various programs through Parks and Recreation over a six week time period to learn how to live a healthier lifestyle and also lose weight. The focus is on health and wellness for the community, the participants and their families.
The competition will begin formally Wednesday, Feb. 6 and continue to the final announcement on Wednesday, March 20.
The chosen ten are Carrie Bullar, Deborah Burrell, Christy Ware, Carli Byrer, Christin Fankhauser, Shelly Pope, Syntha Green, Theresa Craig, Ken Caulum and Kristy Potter.
Syntha Green is an Intensive Special Education Aide with the Petersburg Schools and she is very excited about the program.
“I can't wait to get started,” Green said. “I am hoping to lose weight and gain more energy with this program. I volunteer in a lot of groups and organizations. I can only imagine what I could do with more energy.”
Christy Ware is a stay-at-home mom of four boys and looks forward to learning how to lose weight and get healthy the proper way.
“I am hoping those involved with the program can show that getting healthy can be fun, not just work,” Ware stated. “I also want to show my children that living a healthy lifestyle doesn't stop when you are young. Anyone can be an athlete and live healthy.”
Carli Byrer is the secretary at Petersburg High School and mother of three.
“I think this is a great idea,” Byrer said. “There are so many “quick fixes” out there to lose weight, but for me to be successful, it will take a complete lifestyle change.”
Theresa Craig works in the office of Piston & Rudder and looks forward to the opportunity.
“I think this program is great,” Craig stated. “It boils down to the fact that I want to feel good about myself and I want to learn the do's and don'ts of working out, eating and cooking. This program will hold me accountable.”
Ken Caulum is retired from the Army National Guard and likes a good challenge.
“This is a wonderful idea and a great program for people who are not afraid of hard work and strong commitment,” Caulum said. “I hope to take this whole program and incorporate it into my whole life.”
Caulum would also like to give back by becoming a fitness coach or trainer in the future.
Shelly Pope is the reporter for the Petersburg Pilot and looks forward to the challenges of becoming healthy.
“Being born in the south, I have been infested with fried and fat-filled southern food most of my life,” she stated. “As I have gotten older I have learned some things, but I want to know more. Becoming healthy, losing weight, getting into shape is a big goal for me and this is the perfect first step.”
Carrie Bullar is a front desk agent at Tides Inn and a cashier at Hammer & Wikan Hardware and is looking to take her life back from health issues.
“This is an awesome opportunity and couldn't have come at a better time in my life,” Bullar said. “I would like to let others, who struggle with the same problem, know that they don't have to hide and a healthy lifestyle can be had with help.”
Bullar also hopes to create a good core group of friends through this process.
Christin Fankhauser is a pastor with the Salvation Army and is very excited about this program.
“I'm excited, but also a little nervous because it's a competition,” Fankhauser said. “I have been working on my health and fitness on my own and hit a rut. I know I am now, mentally, in a good place to put the work into this.”
Fankhauser also hopes to gain self-confidence and knowledge from this experience.