‘Loser Challenge’ Changing Lives

‘Loser Challenge’ Changing Lives


MJCCA's Deanna Bustillos has found the center's "Biggest Loser Challenge" a life-changing event. PHOTO / MJCCA
MJCCA’s Deanna Bustillos has found the center’s “Biggest Loser Challenge” a life-changing event. PHOTO / MJCCA

“I can’t believe how much more energy I have now!  I sleep better and don’t have any tired periods in my workday,” says Deanna Bustillos, a swim instructor at the Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta (MJCCA).

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The MJCCA and The Biggest Loser have partnered in The Biggest Loser Challenge, a program for adults who would like to make a positive lifestyle change and become fitter and healthier under the coaching of a professional trainer.

Bustillos has been, successfully, participating in the MJCCA’s Biggest Loser Challenge, having lost 48 pounds, 25 inches, and 26.8 percent of her body fat in six months.

Bustillos states, “Near the end of the first Biggest Loser session, I tried to cut back on my carbs to lose that extra weight for the last weigh in. That was a bad idea. My energy dropped dramatically. My eating habits are under control now. I didn’t need any special secret for quick weight loss or any diet pills. I know it sounds simple, but I can still eat anything I want but in moderation.  If I don’t have the time or energy for a workout on a specific day, I make sure my food choices are on point and I do not cheat.”

During these sessions at the MJCCA, a Biggest Loser Professional will equip participants, like Bustillos, with expert training on proper workout routines, nutrition, and weight management. This nine-week program includes two sessions per week. Each session consists of a 30-minute workout and a 15- minute educational session. The program also includes:

  • Tracking your diet and exercise progress to see how your activity and food habits impact your ability to reach your goals;
  • Assessing your exercise and food habits with the help of a Certified Professional Trainer;
  • Setting personalized goals based on your height and weight, so you won’t be left hungry;
  • Making better food and exercise choices with tons of recipes, meal ideas, exercise demonstrations, and more.

Bustillos explains, “I’ve also realized that a few bad days of eating and/or not getting the proper exercise doesn’t have to ruin me.  I can just hop right back on and pick up where I left off. It’s okay if I have the whole piece of cheesecake.  The next day, I just need to get myself back on the mental track knowing I can do it.  When I’m in the right state of mind, I can have a sliver of that slice of cheesecake.

“Family support is also very important in this journey.  Though my partner hasn’t quite jumped on the band wagon with full force, she has supported my journey and has lost 20 pounds. It does feel good when people give you props for looking better and congratulating you on your weight loss journey.”

More Info

Fall Challenge: August 19-October 17, 2013; and Winter Challenge: October 21–December 19, 2013. Fees for the 9-week program: MJCCA Member: $236, Non-Member: $265. Open to the community. Contact Laura Johnson at (678) 812-4024 or laura.johnson@atlantajcc.org


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