|Public Affairs - Press Release|
Shape Up & Ship Out participants ready for bon voyage
Rodie Cunningham and Lula Harris have shaped up and now they are ready to ship out.
Cunningham and Harris were the winners—make that top losers—in the Shape Up & Ship Out contest sponsored by Mississippi University for Women’s Office of Recreation and Fitness and the graduate program in health education’s Commit To Be Fit program.
Both women garnered a $500 gift certificate toward a cruise for losing approximately 40 pounds as a team during the eight-week competition.
According to Cunningham, administrative assistant in the Office of Finance and Administration, their secret for success included exercise and healthier food choices.
“I am thrilled,” she said. “Our hard work paid off.”
Harris, who provides custodial services in residence life, added, “I am so excited and look forward to the actual cruise.”
Office of Public Affairs staff members Edmond McDavis III and Anika Mitchell Perkins each won $500 gift certificates toward a cruise in a drawing for teams that participated in the fitness portion of the program.
MUW students Robert Anderson and Janey Walker won $50 Walmart shopping cards given by the Office of Recreation and Fitness. Anderson won for the most weight loss by an individual, losing 23.5 pounds, and Walker had the most individual workouts.
More than 200 participants signed up for the program, according to Milly MacDonell, executive director of recreation and fitness. Sixty-one individuals completed the program based on the requirements.
“Unfortunately some team members dropped off and this amounted to 16 teams eligible for the cruises. This is a fairly typical rate of recidivism for exercise programs or any significant change in behavioral patterns.”
The two-person teams were required to work out three times a week at MUW’s Fitness Center or through health and kinesiology and recreation classes. In addition to working out, bi-weekly weigh-ins and attendance to three educational sessions were required.
As for the weight loss participants, 56 weighed in and 48 lost a total of 248.5 pounds. Nine gained a total of 14 pounds.
MacDonell said she was pleased with the program, noting that it was the first of its kind at MUW.
“I think many of the individuals will continue to exercise and have seen the benefit of making exercise become a priority in their daily lives.”
MacDonell recognized recreation and fitness business and facilities coordinator Betsy Spencer, health education graduate student Josephine Tate and student workers in the Fitness Center and "Bubble" for their efforts.
She also thanked the MUW Foundation for its sponsorship.
“The cruises would not have been possible without its generous support.”
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