Sunday, November 2, 2014

Joining the Biggest Loser

I'm not sure how it happened, but it did. I got an email invitation to attend the grand opening of the Biggest Loser Resort on Amelia Island. For Free! As a fan of the show what else could I do? I grabbed my running partner and we drove there for the festivities!

All I can say is thank goodness for Siri. Would you believe that my Garmin GPS, Google Maps and good old Rand McNally all couldn't find our destination? Siri came through with minutes to spare. Once there, we were treated to an opening informational session about the Biggest Loser resorts. It sounds like it would be a great way to kick start improving your health. We then went to some breakout sessions. There were workouts, yoga and nutrition classes.

We chose the workout first. WOW!! I was sore for days after just a 20 minute session. It was a partner workout where we alternated full body exercises: sprints and pushups, slides and situps, frog jumps and squats, and lunges and burpees. Yes, I was shaking and definitely realized how much I need to work some other muscles.

The next session we chose was a nutrition class. It was very informative. Some things I had heard or read before like, eat on a lunch plate instead of a dinner plate and be very aware of portion sizes on containers. Some other advice was new: don't try to do it all at once - make small changes. Aim for good, healthy choices 90% of each week. When ordering at a restaurant it's okay to ask them to mix and match different things on the menu even if it doesn't come as a meal. It's also okay to ask them to pack half before it goes on the plate.

Next, lunch was provided. It was a delicious buffet with grilled chicken or salmon as the protein. There were all the makings of a very healthy salad, along with some grilled flatbread and baked potatoes. We were also given samples of a yellow tomato gazpacho - it was spicy!

After lunch we waited to win our raffle prizes. There were workout DVD's, cookbooks and gift baskets. The two grand prizes were eagerly anticipated: two tickets to The Biggest Loser season finale, and a week's stay at the Amelia Island resort. Alas, we did not win. BUT, get this - a husband and wife each won one of the prizes! Amazing coincidence.

Following the presentation we were able to meet Jessie Pavelka. I think I'd be working hard if he were my trainer!
When were were finished at the convention center, we were able to go tour the facilities. The Biggest Loser Resort is not brand new. Instead, they have taken over a portion of the Omni Hotel's Amelia Island Plantation. Some of the areas were refurbished and they look great. We were some of the first to try out the equipment.

When we got the confirmation, we had the opportunity to stay overnight. Of course, if we were doing this we were doing this all the way. So, we stayed in one of the villas that the participants actually use. They were located nearby the gym and kind of secluded from the main resort. 

We had a great night just wandering around, but splurged on a delicious dinner (and dessert). We were good though, and newly inspired. We woke up early the next morning and completed our scheduled six-mile run on a gorgeous path around the property. We followed it up with a nutritious breakfast with a magnificent view before heading home after our Biggest Loser adventure.