All expectations surpassed

Josie O'Dowd, Castlemaine, contestant in the BTS fitness Nations weight loss challenge with family Martina Boylan and Dorothy Boylan
Josie O'Dowd, Castlemaine, contestant in the BTS fitness Nations weight loss challenge with family Martina Boylan and Dorothy Boylan

Last Friday saw a culmination of eight weeks come to a close with what was to be a family and friends 'Reveal'.

It was Friday at 9.30am when the contestants arrived at BTS Fitness Club for their final weigh-in and measurements, swiftly followed by their final workout.

As the contestants entered the physio room where I was waiting nervously to assess them and I suppose really it was an assessment of myself as well. Did all my planning and nutritional meal plans work? We all doubt ourselves no matter how good we are at something, it's normal I suppose.

All the contestants were very nervous also and so they should have been as this was their moment of truth. Contestants entered the room one by one, where they all made a direct line for the weighing scales but I wanted to measure their Body Fat and Inch measure them first and then weigh them in.

The final weigh-in was completed and it was time for me to go away and crunch the numbers. No rest for the wicked as they say, and the contestants started their final session with myself and one of my trainers, Garrett. Garrett is a boxing expert and an all-round fantastic guy and trainer, and he really pushed the contestants in this session. When this session was over, as the contestants thought it was, I had one last final challenge for them. The group had to flip a 300lb tyre 60 metres, six times. This tyre was the equivalent of the total weight lost by the group.

Remember this was an eight-week process of exercising and eating healthy, for them, their family and friends. Transform one life and change many others. Any journey that is easy is normally too good to be true, so why not challenge yourself to be better, stronger, fitter and more healthy.

The only way of changing and taking control of your own lives is to start something new - join a gym, get professional and specific advice and personalized workout plans for you to make the changes you want and be who you want to be.

The contestants went for a group lunch to round off their journey still not knowing who lost what and who won what. This was going to be revealed at 8.30pm at the Final Reveal. All the contestants were due back at 3.30pm for make overs - hair, shaves, make-up, nails, etc in Gemma Knightly's private hair and beauty college. The gang arrived back to me around 6.30 / 7pm for the final run through of how we would be presenting them. I was only expecting a few family and friends to show for this finale, but to my surprise cars started filling the car park outside from 7.45pm onwards, and were still arriving at 8.30pm. I was gob smacked and stuck for words when hordes of people start making their way towards the doors of the club. It was a fitting end to a tough but worthwhile eight week journey.

We informed the crowd of over 250 people where they will be for the reveal. The crowd were divided into two groups, one group in each open plan fitness studio upstairs. The contestants had no idea of the crowd outside waiting to see the new and improved contestants. We had the camera crew setup upstairs in direct line with the stairs where our contestants took the final walk of their old lives into their new lives with their families and friends.

The contestants were Patrick O'Shea - lost 60lbs; Josie O'Dowd - lost 49lbs; Jane Lomasney - lost 32lbs; Caroline Leahy lost 30lbs; Eilis Casey - lost 31.5lbs; Caroline Mallen - lost 27lbs; David Brick lost 40lbs.

Overall the group lost 308.5lbs, which is an astonishing achievement and has never been done in any weight loss program to date.

A special thanks to all the members of BTS Fitness club for supporting and accommodating us for the eight weeks of filming. Now the attention turns back to our members and attracting new members to BTS Fitness club at the best value in town.

Thanks also to The Kerryman for their amazing support the readers showed up in their hundreds. I was gob smacked with the turn out by the people of Tralee to show their support to eight wonderful contestants.

From myself Niall Hobbert, until we meet again stay healthy and join us at BTS Fitness for the best of everything.


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