Best loser registration Jan. 9; Hatcher shares testimonial

PLYMOUTH — It’s that time of year again, when those who struggle with holiday weight gain — or their weight at any time of the year — can take part the Best Loser challenge.
This time around, Best Loser 2012 will run from Jan. 16 to March 21. Registration deadline is Jan. 9, and teams will consist of just two players instead of the traditional four-person teams. Cost is $40 per team, and couples will still be competing for that $1,000 cash prize.
The first weigh-in is Monday, Jan. 16 when the team picture will be taken. Times to be weighed in are from 5 to 9 a.m. and 5 to 7 p.m.
The middle weigh-in will be Monday, Feb. 13 from 5 to 9 a.m.; Thursday, Feb. 16 from 5 to 8 a.m.; and Saturday, Feb. 18 from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m.
The final weigh-in will be Monday, March 19 from 5 to 9 a.m.; Thursday, March 22 from 5 to 8 p.m. and Saturday, March 24 from 7 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Both participants must make it to designated times at each weigh-in to be qualified for grand prize; however teammates do not have to attend together. Winners are determined by the combined percentage of weight loss of both participants. An individual prize will go to the participant who loses the most total percentage of body fat overall: A free 30-minute massage at Serenity Spa.
Register at Fitness Forum at the LifePlex: 574-936-2333; located at 2855 Miller Drive, Suite 101, Plymouth.
Proving weight loss is achievable, Larry Hatcher Jr., of Plymouth, shares his testimonial:
Goals can be reached!
“I am 163 pounds lighter to prove it. Thanks Fitness Forum at LifePlex! My weight loss journey started January 12, 2011 at a weight of 397 pounds. I knew I had to do something but just needed that extra push to do it. The main reason I decided I needed to do this was watching my dad suffer through all of his health problems that occurred with being overweight. He passed away Oct. 18, 2009 from complications due to a fall and at that point I really started thinking, ‘I have to change my life, I have to lose weight,’ but still didn’t do anything about it. In October, 2010 my brother in-law, John Wade, approached me and asked me to join the gym with him and my sister and told me that he would help me lose weight. They said the gym was a great place for me because everyone was so helpful and nice and there were plenty of options. He told me that he would show me how to work out and my sister would help gain a healthier eating lifestyle, it would be a team effort and they would not let me down if I was willing to do the work. My sister began helping me see what a portion size really was and I could not believe how much I was really eating! My first thought was, ‘that’s a portion, really? I will starve at this rate’ but after the first week it got easier and now I don’t event think about it, I know in my mind how much I can eat and really be satisfied. At the weight I was, my sister was scared that I was going to die at a young age and she didn’t want that for me, she wanted us to live a long, happy and healthy life together. It’s just my mom, her and I; and she didn’t want to live her life without me. I knew I really had to do something but still didn’t quite have the motivation to step into the gym, not just yet, but at least I was thinking about it.
Finally in January, 2011, I made the decision that my entire life was waiting on me to make, I took my first step to a healthier lifestyle and walked into Fitness Forum at LifePlex. I wasn’t sure this was for me but with the coaxing of my brother-in-law I gave it a shot, I had nothing to lose but weight, did I? The first workout was horrible, I thought for sure it was going to kill me but I felt so good after that first workout that I joined that night. The atmosphere at the gym was more than I expected, I was actually comfortable working out and I enjoyed it. I began going with my family and worked my way from three days a week to four and from 30 minutes to more than an hour a day. Saturday mornings were the ‘weigh in’ day and each week everyone was excited to see what I had lost. We had our own ‘biggest loser’ happening in front of everyone’s eyes.
Don’t get me wrong, the workouts were tough and there were days that I really wondered if I would be able to do it but I always accomplished it!
I ran my first 5K with my sister and brother in-law Labor Day weekend and finished in 34 minutes. This was something I never thought I could do, and I always hated to run! If someone would have told me in January that in September, I would run in a 5K, I would have laughed at them. I now work out three days at the gym for one-and-a-half or two hours and run 3.1 miles every Saturday morning — and I actually enjoy the run.
As of today I have lost a total of 182 pounds. I haven’t reached my goal yet but I am within an arms length right now and know that this is a lifestyle change that will carry with me for the rest of my life.
So, for all of you doubters out there saying, ‘I can’t work out, everyone will stare at me; I will never reach my goal; I will never lose weight; I just can’t do it’ — I say, ‘Yes you can! You can do whatever you put your mind to, there is always a way and you can and will find it.’
I started out at a weight no one wants to get to so if I can do it, then anyone can. This path hasn’t been easy but it’s been worth every bit of pain, strain, sweat and hard work, to accomplish it.
If my dad were here today he would be so proud of what I have accomplished and relieved to know that I will not have the health problems he had to struggle with because I have made a lifestyle change to be healthier. If there is anything good that can come from watching my dad pass away then this would have to be it. If it weren’t for me having to see the health problems he fought through everyday and have to watch him pass away at 63, then I can’t say that I would be where I am today.”