Lean in '15 Crowns Winners

By Michelle Lounsbury, PES

Sunday, March 1 concluded our 8-week Lean in '15 Challenge. So how did everyone do? Collectively, the group of 20 participants lost more than 100 pounds...simply amazing! More important than the pounds lost is what members learned about themselves throughout this challenge.

Our Olympic champion, Tara Mounsey said, "I feel the best I have felt in 10 years. Clean eating has changed my life."

Jeidy Fernandez said, "My goal for this challenge was to lose weight and learn healthy options. I realized my 'healthy snacks' all contained sugar. Besides the food aspect, the weekly challenges helped me realize my strengths and weaknesses. It was great to have other people to talk to and motivate each other to stay on track!"

And what did winners Sue and Elaine have to say?

Sue Bator, who captured second place by earning the most amount of points during this challenge, said, "Before Lean in '15, I never realized how much added sugar was in food. I loved the weekly challenges - sometimes you have to push yourself, and if you do you'll see results. Before this started I never would have thought I could do rope climbs, but when I did I was ecstatic! I also loved the online banter and support. I feel like this challenge created more of a community. I'm looking forward to continuing this healthier lifestyle to see what other challenges I can overcome in the future. I feel great!"

Last but certainly not least, I am thrilled to announce our top winner and the "biggest loser" of this challenge -- losing more than 20 pounds -- the one and only Elaine Donahue. "This challenge was exactly what I needed," Elaine said. "I am feeling better than I have in a long time. Reading labels and cutting out sugar has changed the way I look at food, especially with Type 2 Diabetes prevalent in my family. Being a competitive person, I love a challenge...especially one against myself."