People in York, Ala., are weighing in for the 2010 version of its annual 'Scale Back Alabama' campaign at the York Health Clinic. The statewide competition helped residents lose over 400,000 pounds in 2009.
Six hundred of those pounds were lost by four-person teams in York. This year, participants look to shed even more.
"We've been doing a lot of cardio. But we have five areas we're going to work on, our wings, our muffin, our pouch, our thighs, and buttocks," said coordinator Anita Larkin.
Cardio classes will be taught in the Health center. Teams will decide on diet techniques, and the competition will officially be underway this Friday.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama and Barber Dairies are sponsoring this event and plan to give out cash prizes after ten weeks of exercise and cutting back.
"I'm going to try and lose ten pounds but I would like to lose about thirty," said participant Claudine Bell.
Teams in which each member loses ten pounds will be eligible for a drawing for cash prizes, ranging from $250 to $1,000. The biggest local losers will win a store credit from local businesses.
"Any time somebody can try to do something to help somebody lose weight and get healthier, I think that's a good thing," said coordinator Vivian Johnson. "And I believe our businesses want that to happen."
"I thought it was an excellent idea that she's doing something, participating in doing something to help with the health of our local residents here and just thought that, anything I could do to help out would be an add," said Bell.
The prizes offered by local stores and a team environment help locals stay inspired over the ten weeks, not to mention, feeling and looking healthier as well.
There is still time to join the effort. Four-person teams must take part in a weigh-in at a designated site by Friday. There are sites in Sumter and Choctaw counties. For more information, check out the campaign's Web site. A link is provided below.
Alabama has the second highest obesity rate in the nation. Mississippi has the highest. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says 31.4% of Alabama's residents are considered obese. In Mississippi, the rate is 32.8%.