FIT Challenger Chelsea Saylor said it is hard to be in the public eye when she isn’t losing weight, but she plans to complete the six-month program anyway.
“This is all for me a learning experience. I mean each week I am focusing on something,” Saylor said, as she grabbed a tissue and started to cry.
One week she focused on portion control, then calorie counting and she recently cut out pasta and soda from her diet.
“I know that I haven’t lost anything and I feel disappointed in myself because I had this great opportunity and I didn’t seize it with everything.”
Saylor said she feels like she has let down FIT Challenge organizers, the readership and her family, in particular her brother who lives in Japan.
“He was so excited and then he reads that I haven’t lost anything,” Saylor said.
She also thinks people are staring at her and judging her, which has made it hard to remain in the FIT Challenge.
However, she knows she represents what a lot of people are going through, so she doesn’t want to quit.
Saylor started the FIT Challenge in July with Curves, but decided to go out on her own in September. She remains about 282 pounds.
Her boyfriend, Greg Raugh, has been supportive the whole time, although his new trucking job puts him on the road for days at a time. This was hard on Saylor in the beginning and affected her attitude toward the FIT Challenge.
Now she is capitalizing on the time he is gone.
“He isn’t at home wanting to do stuff like go out to eat,” she said, laughing.
One of Saylor’s favorite physical activities is a Port Clinton-based fitness boot camp called On Point Wellness founded by Mike Lento.
“Chelsea is an amazing person,” Lento said. “What everyone needs to remember is that she made the decision to get healthy, and that’s exactly what she is doing. She is making a consistent effort to maintain her progress. We at On Point are an inclusive group of individuals that want everyone to succeed. Chelsea is a great addition to what we are doing.”
Saylor tries to go to On Point every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday.
“I love going to boot camp,” she said. “Those people are so unbelievably positive.”
Recently, Saylor ran 1.2 miles in the same amount of time she previously ran 0.96 miles.
Two of the guys who had already completed the race came back to run with her. Saylor had just finished what she calls “wagging,” a form or walking and running, when she decided, “Screw it, I will run it.”
“They guys ran behind me. It felt so good. When I got home that night, I felt awesome. I felt so much better than I did when I woke up.”
Despite her lack of success, Saylor intends to keep trying to lose weight in December.
“I keep pushing myself. I am not letting myself give up.”
She was proud of the willpower she exhibited on Thanksgiving.
“I only had one plate of food, and I don’t mean I had one plate of food with a mountain of food on it. The biggest helping I had was green beans,” she said. “I am making better choices. I am not stuffing myself. I am keeping myself in the zone where I am still comfortable and I don’t feel like I have to do undo my pants.”
Although the FIT Challenge hasn’t been what she had hoped, she is optimistic.
“This is helping me focus on what I need to change and showing me that it isn’t going to happen overnight or in six months. It will take time. It took time to put it on; it will take time to take it off.”