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Madison elementary is ‘scaling back’

Published 10:57pm Sunday, January 27, 2013

Madison Elementary School has registered as a Scale Back Alabama School.


Twenty employees have registered and are dedicating 10 weeks to lose 10 pounds and learn about living a healthier lifestyle. Bolstered by camaraderie and accountability, five four-member teams at Madison elementary are vying to lose the most weight.

Assistant Principal Dr. Georgina Nelson is coordinating the effort and has been involved with Scale Back Alabama since its inception.

“I wanted to encourage our employees who were committed to becoming more healthy. Additionally, it highlights the importance … to our students,” Nelson said. “If we reach our goal, we’ll have collectively lost 200 pounds.”

A statewide campaign, Scale Back Alabama annually promotes weight loss and exercise. The contest is free. Individuals completing the contest and losing at least 10 pounds will be eligible for cash prize drawings.

Schools with five or more teams are eligible as a Scale Back School and entered in a separate prize drawing for school nutrition or physical education supplies.

Sixth-grade teacher Shannon Lilienthal wants to lose 40 pounds. “I’m doing a low-calorie diet. My exercise is walking daily and chasing my two-year-old,” Lilienthal said.

School nurse Linda Haney already “had begun a study, Bod for God, at my church that focuses on scripture and making positive lifestyle changes. Being a part of the team here at Madison helps by having yet another form of accountability and encouragement.”

Haney is eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, drinking plenty of water and avoiding complex carbohydrates.

“I appreciate the motivation and encouragement. Goals seem realistic and attainable,” instructional aid Angie Jones said. “Sometimes, it’s hard to maintain healthy eating when you are doing so alone.”

Nelson hopes to take off about 15 pounds. “Most importantly, I need to return to a more active lifestyle. Prior to having my twins 19 months ago, I was training for and entering 5Ks. I have let that slide since they were born. I’m planning on doing the Couch to 5K plan again,” she said.

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