Photo by Michael Johnson
Fit Club 24/7's Biggest Loser winners were (left to right) Mark Scoville, Linda Richards and Charles Lewis. Richards finished first dropping 24.1 percent, Scoville was second (13.69% and Lewis was third (9.8%).
Richards defends ‘Biggest Loser’ title
GENESEO – Fit Club 24/7’s Second Annual Biggest Loser Contest just wrapped up, and York’s Linda Richards is now a two-time champion.
“(Winning again) was pretty cool,” said Richards, who lost a commanding 24.1% of her body weight. “I didn’t think I was going to be able to do it, but I am such a competitive person.”
Rounding out the group of winners was Geneseo’s Mark Scoville (13.69%) and Charlie Lewis (9.8%), who finished second and third respectively.
Richards said that winning the contest the first time was the key to sticking to her workouts that led her to the second victory.
“Winning was actually easier the second time,” she said. “I already had the momentum and all the lifestyle changes from the first time. This time seemed more natural because it’s part of my lifestyle now. Before, I had to get used to getting in the routine of going to the gym, and now, I am not fighting that mental battle anymore.”
Richards claimed that she and her husband Devin had set goals beyond winning the competition and that extra motivation helped her repeat the crown.
“Last year, our goal was to run the Oak Tree Half Marathon,” Richards said. “This year, we wanted to ride in the Tour de Cure. It gave us something to train for instead of just going to the gym. It helped to have a goal beyond just weight loss.”
The Tour de Cure is a 100-mile long bike ride sponsored by the American Diabetes Association and Richards did complete the task in June.
Now that she stands a two-time Biggest Loser champion, Richards has big plans of how she plans to keep the pounds off.
“Having entered the competition and being able to win twice has led me to getting my certification to become a personal trainer and nutritionist,” Richards said.
This aspiration was “definitely” inspired by her weight loss and dieting efforts.
“It was such a learning experience,” said Richards. “I’ve lost 150 pounds since I joined the gym. It changed my entire life. People ask me how did I do it and I want to help other people lose weight, too.”
Because of the success of the Biggest Loser Contest, Fit Club 24/7 has decided to make this an annual event.
The start of the contest hosted 28 competitors, and 15 people stuck it out for the entire 16 week program.
“The staff here at the Fit Club feel that all of the competitors are winners even if they didn’t win one of the grand prizes,” said Fit Club 24/7 owner Mary Ann Reitano. “They made a commitment to do something to be healthier, something for themselves and for many, this was the start of a continuing journey of weight loss.”
Look for more details on the Third Annual Biggest Loser Contest soon.