First Place: The Fat and the Furious
The Fat and the Furious team were co-workers who all shared a common goal of knowing they could lose some weight. A couple of the members had already done HealthyWage before so they believed in it and encouraged the other members to join them in the competition.
While they met at the beginning to discuss their plans and regularly kept in touch since they saw each other every day, they did use individual diet and exercise strategies that fit their needs, preferences, and lifestyles. While some did lots of exercise, other restricted their food choices and used apps to count calories. Motivation included a little ribbing, support, advice and healthy competition among the team members to reach their weight loss percentage target.
As it turned out, every person maxed out on the percentage to lose, meeting their goals prior to the holidays to make sure they stayed that way. Now, the team members feel like they are developing healthy habits, opting to go to the gym at lunch instead of eat out. They also focused on regular diet and exercise rather than turning to fad diets to lose the weight quickly only to have it creep back on later. Some still want to lose more weight so they are already looking at the HealthyWage individual challenges to keep them on track with these new goals.
“It is a great thing to have a team to motivate you, create a competition, and make you accountable. The contest and the support group are two great motivators that helped all of us lose weight.”
Second Place: Skinny on the Inside
Team Skinny on the Inside consisted of a mother and daughter brought together with their teammates thanks to HealthyWage matchmakers to create a team who was committed to losing weight and hopefully winning a top spot in the competition.
For team member Lisa, who was considered morbidly obese, losing weight was vital to saving her life and her daughter wanted to ensure her mom was around as long as possible. After the two had been abandoned by their own team, they were excited to work virtually with their other team members on strategies that would help them lose the weight. The team members all learned that results came from applying themselves to the task at hand. That meant stepping up the exercise regimen by becoming diligent at daily exercise as well as decreased carbs while increasing lean proteins. Working with each other definitely helped all the team members to stay on track.
They all knew they were responsible to each other. And, despite the distance, which did create some communication and teamwork barriers, overall they were committed to helping each other succeed. For the members, the HealthyWage competition gave them a way to set short-term goals and meet them rather than focusing on their entire weight loss goals, which were overwhelming to some members. Beyond helping to break down the task of weight loss, all the members felt that the financial incentive was huge because it provided positive reinforcement and helped incentivize many team members who felt like they could really use the money. The team members will tell you that they loved the experience and many plan to join other HealthyWage challenges to help with the additional weight they want to lose.
Third Place: Team Loser
Team Loser is far from losers except if you look at it from the perspective of how much weight they lost. Then you could say that they are really Team Winners. The team came together when work colleagues told each other about HealthyWage and then added a friend from outside the workplace to round out the team. When it came to their strategy, they each had their own plan for how they would lose the weight. At first, some focused on restrictive strategies in terms of calories and tried juicing, but they soon realized that these tactics only left them hungry and frustrated. When talking to other team members who were focused on cardio, such as jogging and cycling as well as a modified paleo diet of lean proteins, no carbs, and fruits and vegetables, they adopted the same strategy.
Since four of them worked in the same building, they regularly ran into each other and talked about their progress. They also hiked together when they had time. One team member created a spreadsheet for them so they could track what they had lost and where they should be each week during the competition. The fact that HealthyWage rewarded second and third place finishers also gave them more of an incentive because it was mentally helpful to know that they had a greater chance with more financial rewards. Additionally, they regularly talked via email for further motivation.
While one team member maxed out on the percentage lost, many others came close, illustrating their commitment to their team members. They feel great not to mention the weight loss inspired others to sign on with one team member, forming a new team for an upcoming HealthyWage team competition.
“Financial motivation was the key for us. A doctor could tell us we were going to die from not losing weight, and we wouldn’t change. Tell us we could each win $2,000 and we were completely focused on it. The program helped us and fueled our competitive spirits to win.”