OUR Fit Factor competition kicked off this Monday as eight overweight readers started their intensive 12-week fitness training programme.
As part of our Great North Fitness Revolution campaign, The Journal and Real Radio will be following the progress of The Active 8 every week as they battle to lose weight. Whoever makes most progress and is deemed the most inspirational contestant will win a holiday to Dubai with flights from Newcastle, courtesy of Emirates, and hotel accommodation at the Hilton Jumeirah Residences.
Fitness instructor David Fairlamb took the group – who range from 14 stone 10lbs to 28 stone – for their first session on Monday.
He said: “A lot of them thought they wouldn’t actually be able to run for a few weeks but all of them were running within the first 10 to 15 minutes at a walking pace on a soft surface, which gave them a massive boost.
“Two hadn’t done any exercise for over 20 years and many hadn’t exercised since school so it was a real baptism of fire for them. It was quite a structured session, all about getting them used to their bodies moving again, checking their posture and that they’re doing things correctly.
“The group have gelled really well and all gave as much as they could. It just proves that just because you’re overweight doesn’t mean you can’t exercise. Your body can do a lot more than you actually think. It’s mind over matter and believing you can achieve.”
On Wednesday evening the group took part in a more intense resistance training session.
“Their legs were a bit sore from the first session so we did core work on the stomach and back, as well as giving them some ideas for things to try at home,” added David.
Tonight they be meeting Run Geordie Run charity champ Mark Allison, who last year raised more than £100,000 for The Children’s Foundation and St Benedict’s Hospice when he ran from Los Angeles to New York in just 100 days.
He’ll be talking to them about the importance of mental attitude and inspiring them with his own personal weight loss story before taking them for a jog. Mark Allison is also on Real Radio Breakfast with Gary and Lisa at 8.30am today.
David Fairlamb has lots planned for the Active 8 over the next few weeks including a Pilates class, cardio tennis and a lesson in nutrition from Dr Amelia Lake and her colleagues who’ll be taking them round a supermarket and giving them lots of useful advice.