Magic Valley Weight Loss Challenge Offers Bigger Rewards


By Aimee Burnett

Twin Falls, Idaho (KMVT-TV / KTWT-TV) The 2013 Magic Valley Weight Loss Challenge has several new additions this year.

The official weigh-in took place Saturday at the Twin Falls YMCA.

"Who in here has a family history of largeness?" asked Bear Bangs, 2011 Magic Valley Weight Loss Winner.

Bangs is now a spokesman for the annual event.

An estimated 400 people have signed up for this year's challenge.

That's almost twice as many as last year.

"Last year on average the people lost about 25 pounds. Our winner though lost over 100 pounds,” said Gary Ettenger, CEO, Twin Falls YMCA.

And, it's a good thing because this year's participants have a big goal to attain.

"The goal for the Magic Valley is to lose 10, 000 pounds," said Ettenger.

One of the changes this year, the person who loses the largest percentage of body fat, at the end of the six month challenge, will win $10,000.

That’s $4,000 more than years past.

Back in 2011, Bangs walked away with first place.

"I lost 112.5 pounds. Always have to put that half pound in there," said Bangs.

This year Bangs is taking an active role in the event by using his experience to motivate others.

"I would say the biggest motivator for me was just a matter of if I give up now, it's easy to give up tomorrow and it's going to be easier to give up the next day," said Bangs.

In the last two years his life has changed dramatically.

"Just being able to walk up a flight of stairs and not be out of breath, being able to not only touch my toes, but actually see my toes without having to lean over now," said Bangs.

Bangs will be teaching a series of inspirational workshops as part of this year's challenge.

"Working with Kurt's Pharmacy the YMCA has put together twenty–five different programs and activities,” said Ettenger.

Providing support and guidance to those who are in it to win that battle of the bulge.

You have until January 12th to weigh–in and join the challenge.

It's $75 to sign up, but there is financial aid available to those eligible.

The fee includes all of the workout events and inspiration workshops.

For more information contact the Twin Falls YMCA.

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