Low Country Shrinkdown--Part III - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

02/28/06

Low Country Shrinkdown--Part III

More than 1,200 people in Beaufort County are shrinking. It has been an eventful eight weeks. And it's all a part of the Low Country Shrinkdown challenge. This past Friday was the last weigh-in, and both of the ladies we've been following did great. Not only did they shed some pounds, but they say they've improved their lives.

For years, both Linda Funk and Melody Annis have battled their weight, but after eight weeks on the Low Country Shrinkdown, they say they're learning what it takes to win the battle.

"I've learned more than I ever thought I would," said Funk. "I was really glad for it because all the information was very current and up to date."

Since the beginning, Funk has taken that information and run with it. She began eating healthier and exercising regularly. In fact, two weeks ago she ran for the first time in 25 years--a huge accomplishment, considering she's also battling Parkinson's disease.

Although her goal was to lose one to two pounds a week, she told us her main goal was to help her and her family get healthier. And she's done that. For instance, she's added a salad bar to the family's Sunday dinners instead of heavy breads.

"She's been making sure everyone is following in her steps," said Danielle Thompson, Funk's daughter. "She's doing a great job."

Annis has also made some major accomplishments these past two months. She's stuck to her 1,200 calorie diet and walks regularly. "I am so excited I did the Shrinkdown, because I didn't know if I should do it at first and I decided I needed the push," she told us.

And with that little push, she made a lot of changes at home and at work. In the office, she helped turn their Fat Friday feasts into Fit Fridays, with a smorgasbord of healthy foods. And through this process, she's amazed herself. "I knew I wanted to [stick with it], it was just a matter of if I could. And I've proven to myself I can, so I'm happy with myself and my results."

This week, Annis lost another two pounds. That makes 21 pounds total. She's already down three pant sizes and plans to keep going. "My Shrinkdown is not over. I'm going to keep going."

To help her keep going, she and her coworkers have put a scale at work so they can weigh in weekly. "We're having so much success that we want to make sure we keep having that success while we all reach the goals we want to reach," Annis said.

Linda Funk lost another two pounds this week too, shrinking her down nine pounds and quite a few inches. "Fourteen inches," she said. "That's a lot of inches and I'm going to keep going. I'm going to keep going. I've never felt this good."

And both ladies say they're proud of their results.

"It just makes you feel great about things," said Funk. "You have a better outlook. I'm not in that rut anymore. I'm at a point I never thought I'd be at."

And for Annis, the results were even worth being tracked on TV. "At first I was a little wary about it. I thought, 'Oh my gosh, everyone in all these counties are going to know how much I weigh,' but you know what? It's okay because maybe that has helped someone else."

We do want to say a special thanks to both Linda and Melody for letting us follow them.

Over the course of the eight weeks, Beaufort County has lost just under 4,000 pounds. Although the last weigh-in is over, the official grand finale is this coming Thursday evening at the YMCA in Beaufort.

Reported by: Jaime Dailey, jdailey@wtoc.com

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