Week one has finally come and the 9th season of Fort Wayne’s Smallest Winner is officially on. All of the contestants’ questions, concerns, and fears can now be answered as they no longer wonder what the 15 weeks will be like but rather they start experiencing it and discovering what to expect.

Monday evening finds the contestants entering into their first official weigh-in.  This weigh-in gives them their starting point from which they will journey through their season of loss. There are two hard things about this weigh-in.  The first is getting up in front of everyone and taking off your shirt for the weigh-in while the photographer is taking pictures.  How often we have hidden behind our clothing, but now it is time to reveal the truth about ourselves.


That is where the second hard thing comes in, hearing the weight.  The weight isn’t just recorded it is announced for all to hear.  Everyone hears how much weight you are carrying; you can’t hide it to yourself.  Through that hardship though there is also hope.  The alumni are there cheering and encouraging the contestants on.  They have been through it and know what the contestants are feeling.  The alumni share words of encouragement to help the contestants through the evening.  The greatest is the truth, “This is the last time you will hear those numbers.” From now on as they follow the directions of the program their weight will be going down, so tonight they can say goodbye to the high numbers.

After their weigh-in they have their first nutrition class with Bev and learn important lessons on portion sizes.  “You mean that is a portion size, not what I have been eating!” The reality of portion control that our society tries to avoid, is met head on in their first nutrition training.

Tuesday morning comes and Spiece is invaded with Smallest Winner shirts as contestants, alumni, and staff all gather in the gym to start training.

fwsw week1

Contestants are to line up by their teams on one basketball court and the alumni are to form lines on the other. The workout on paper seems so easy but each contestant has kept moving and at the final gathering for prayer know they have indeed completed their first FWSW workout.

As they gather on Wednesday they finally see Amber the trainer for the day.  She is a tiny sprite lady, that means it should be an easy fun workout, right? Wrong.  Amber is a powder key of energy ready to get the contestants moving and keep them moving.  She moves them from one routine to another with the other trainers going around to make sure the contestants are doing everything right.  She starts counting down from 10 to 1 as to when the contestants can rest, then someone drops their arms and the count goes back up.  Who realized how hard it is to keep twirling your arms straight out from your side.  The alumni are there though, stepping up and encouraging the contestants that they can do it.  Before you know it their first Amber day is over.

Pool day comes and the contestants learn that it is anything but a day at the beach.  They
have to warm up by walking in two circles causing tidal type resistance to their motion.  Eventually they get divided into three groups to do three sets of workouts in the pool.  The pool day ends with everyone grabbing a spot on the wall and doing timed wall kicks.  They soon discover that you can get a very exhausting workout in the pool.

fwsw pool-workout

Friday brings them back to EJ.  Once again they go through the stretching and marching drills.  More detail attention is given to make sure they are doing everything right.  Also some more intensive work is given for them to do.  Team spirit starts being shown as one team all go back out to continue the marching into their last team member crosses the line.

This week they also experienced their run clubs.  There are two clubs for them to choose to do on either Wednesday or Thursday evening.  Both groups had the same bad luck with weather so each one had to invade Spiece to do their walks on the indoor track.  They walked for 30 minutes to start getting their legs and body use to moving steadily for a period of time.

Saturday morning brought them all together for their first run club that was able to be outside. They gathered at 7 am while it was still dark to stretch and then do their first timed mile.  As they did their mile the sun came up which was very fitting.  This mile run ended the first week of the program which was the sunrise of the new life awaiting them.  There were smiles and laughter along the mile route as each contestant went out and crossed that finish line.  They ended their first week knowing they had accomplished something great.

Week one is now in the books and the contestants of these season have shown that they have what it takes to work through the program to turn their lives around for the better.

“Training with others and witnessing their accomplishments motivates and inspires me. I’ve recommended 3RRC to runners of all abilities. The employees are not only experts, but are friendly and patient in making sure customers are matched with the best products for their running objectives.”

Mike Slaubaugh


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