The “It takes 3 to shift a stone (3 mates, 3 months, 3 million steps)” weight loss competition was launched in February 2017. Teams of three people have been encouraged to aim for a sensible weight loss to achieve a healthy BMI through the support of friends, family and team members, with the goal of losing one stone each over three months. The team who, after one year, have lost and maintained the highest weight loss will win vouchers.
38 teams, 114 people in total, from the Butt to Barra signed up and 65 of them attended the three month weigh-in. The combined weight loss of all 65 people is a fantastic 604 lbs – which is just over 43 stone. This is an incredible achievement by all who are taking part. Nearly half of them have lost 5% of their weight, reducing their risk to develop heart disease, diabetes and some cancers.
Pictured is Mission Slimpossible, the team who lost the most combined weight at the three month mark – made up of Marion Macleod, Sarah Morrison and Donella Brown. Between them they have lost a total of 65 lbs. In second place was ‘Scots Weigh Hay’. The ‘Disappearing Dames’ made up of Janette Sutton, Kirsty Macleod and Kathleen Macleod, came in third place with a combined weight loss of 47 lbs.
The leading team commented, “It was a long three months, but worth it in the end! ‘It takes 3’ definitely gave us a kick start and it really helped being part of a team as we didn’t want to let each other down, and we encouraged each other through the hard times. It also helped us focus on what we ate, our lifestyle and on exercising more.
“We all intend to continue with our weight loss and the ‘Walk 500 Miles Step Challenge’ is certainly getting us off the sofa just now.”
To help motivate the participants, a new telehealth text messaging service, known as Florence, was used. In the past NHS Western Isles has used the system to, for example, remind patients of health appointments.
During this competition Florence was used to send motivational text messages and useful links, as well as giving participants the opportunity to text in their weekly weight and track their overall weight loss in the competition. All of the entrants who gave feedback reported that they liked using Florence. Most of the teams commented that participating in a team, changing their diet, increasing their exercise and weekly weighing also helped them to lose weight.
We will have to wait until February 2018 to see who the overall winners will be – and wonder how many stones will be lost from the Western Isles by then?