Loss leaders: Shape-Up Showdown is a big success; 23 participants lose 173 lbs.

the enthusiastic and tireless participants in the recently completed shape-Up showdown, a pilot program that was a smashing success and is set to return next year.

Six weeks after starting the pilot weight loss challenge program, Winthrop Shape-Up Showdown, with 24 program participants, through the efforts of founders Michael Miccichi, Alyssa Foley, Michelle Bishop and with Marc Wallerce of the Winthrop Maket Place as an Advisor, has recorded its first success in town.

On Sunday, November 29, 23 participants successfully completed the program, participated in their final weigh-in at the Point Shirley Association building and recorded a total of 172 pounds lost by the entire group.

“It was a wonderful event,” said Bishop, one of the Shape-Up Showdown’s founders. “Over 40 people were on hand at our official home base, the Point Shirley Association building, to celebrate our participants weight loss and the atmosphere was festive and full of decorations, music and excitement.”

The Shape-Up Showdown Winthrop Challenge included a six-week competition style challenge with comprehensive programming that included personal fitness training, basic nutrition counseling, Zumba classes and a “Hike with Mike” walking and hiking program.

“Our mission with this program is to provide a staff of volunteers that are 100 percent committed to providing a safe, supportive and caring atmosphere for individuals to achieve their goals,” added Bishop. “Each professional volunteer is dedicated to sharing their time and expertise with each participant and the Winthrop community as a whole.”

The final weigh-in event included three categories for judging winners: highest percentage of weight loss (with prizes for first through fourth); most inches lost (prizes for first through third); and most pounds lost (prizes for first and second).

Additionally, over $3,000 in prizes were won by the participants, including gifts from 13 sponsors.

Based on the success of the pilot program, Bishop and her co-founders announced that a second Winthrop Shape-Up Showdown Challenge is now being organized to begin in May 2011. The six-week program will cost $175 per person and the founders of the program have promised that the next cycle will be “even bigger and better” with better prizes and more opportunities for local business networking.

The winners in each category, along with the sponsor of their prize were as follows.

In the highest percentage weight loss category were: 1st place Kathy Whittaker with 9.66 percent weight loss and the Grand Prize of the Hilton Hotel Fitness Getaway; 2nd place Holly Schlicting with 8.95 percent weight loss and a Brooks Dental Whitening System; 3rd place Barbara Adler with 7.94 percent weight loss and a Rumors Hair Design package; and 4th place Marsha Anastas with 7.28 percent weight loss and a Mally’s Hair Expressions package.

In the Most Inches Lost category were: 1st place Barbara Adler and a gift from Harmonious Living; 2nd place Holly Schlicting and a gift from a Epidermis Inc.; and Cindy Driscoll and a gift from salon Luxo.

In the Most Pounds lost category were: 1st place Barbara Adler with 20 pounds and a $25 Winthrop Dollars Gift Certificate; and 2nd place Holly Schlicting with 17 pounds and a $25 Winthrop Dollars Gift Certificate.

The professional team if trainers included Alyssa Foley, ACE certified trainer and CPR/AED certified; Tracy Carlsen ACE certified trainer and CPR certified; Susan Giarrantani Ace certified trainer and nutritional specialist; and Natalie Bono Bayersdorfer, certified Zumba instructor and CPR certified.

Major sponsors for this program included the Winthrop Marketplace, Hilton Hotel and Brooks Dental. Other sponsors were Frito Lay, Diana Aliberti-Mary Kay, Epidermis Inc., Mally’s Hair Expressions, Rumors Hair Design, Salon Luxo, Harmonious Living, Kasbah Restaurant, the Winthrop Playmakers and the Winthrop School of Performing Arts.

The Shape-Up Showdown also wanted to acknowledge the support of The Point Shirley Association, The Winthrop Sun Transcript, Sean Foley of Foley Electric, WCAT-TV and host Ron Vecchia, the Winthrop Chamber of Commerce and Christine Carr Photography.

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