Simonton Employees Lose Nearly 1,500 Pounds

October 18, 2010

More than 300 Simonton Windows employees collectively lost 1,470 pounds during the six-week Simonton Summer Challenge. More than 150  teams of two employees each from the manufacturer's facilities in West Virginia, Illinois, Oklahoma and California competed, with the winning team, “Tons of Fun,” losing a combined 49 pounds by cutting out cheeseburgers, embracing exercising and eating healthy foods.

“I’m terrible about late night snacking, so this challenge really pushed me to change my eating habits,” says Jon Cunningham, a buyer in Simonton's purchasing department. “Every day my teammate Marshall Nicholas and I would walk two miles at lunchtime and I’d eat chicken and salad. Then at night I’d exercise and walk again.

“I love cheeseburgers and used to eat them every day for lunch. Now that I’ve dropped about 25 pounds, I’ve said farewell to burgers and embraced the good eating habits I learned during the challenge.”

Cunningham, who at 37 weighs 188 pounds, is dedicated to keeping his weight below 190. Other winning Simonton teams, such as “Thin 2 Win” and “Fat Blasters,” also benefited from the focus on healthy living habits during the contest.

“We launched this six-week challenge to educate our employees nationwide about weight, body fat and body mass indexes,” says Loren Mundstock, a Simonton wellness coach. “This effort has helped prepare everyone for the Bravo Wellness Screening coming up for employees in the near future. The winning combination for every participant was education, information and better life choices.”

All nine Simonton facilities across the United States work directly with professional coaches from Wellness Coaches USA.  Coaches help individual employees to address various lifestyle issues, including nutrition, exercise, diet and weight loss, medication noncompliance, tobacco cessation and chronic health conditions. The company sees these activities as an investment in its employees and their families that can result in healthier lifestyles and decreased medical bills, officials note.

In addition to the individual coaches, Simonton also provides a results-based wellness incentives program for its employees. Bravo Wellness, LLC monitors the blood pressure, body mass index, tobacco use and cholesterol of its employees.

Winning team members across the country in the Simonton Summer Challenge included:

  • Ellenboro, W. Va.:  First Place to “Soul Brothers” team of Bill Burnside and Brian Richeson.  Second Place to “Novel Approach” team of Tom Boulet and Ron Brilliant.
  • Harrisville, W. Va.: First Place to “Gunslingers” team of Forrest Smith and Troy Simmons
  • Pennsboro, W. Va.: First Place to “Thin 2 Win” team of Steve Eddy and Susie Gregg. Second Place to “M&M” team of Cathy Mercer and Jamie Moore.
  • SimEx, St. Mary’s, W. Va.: First Place to “FBC” team of Charles Bayer and Josh Martin. Second Place to “Bruce’s Buddies” team of Robert Kimball and John Ratliff.
  • Corporate Offices, Parkersburg, W. Va.: First Place to “Tons of Fun” team of Jon Cunningham and Marshall Nicholas. Second Place to “Slug Bugs” team of Carol Cunningham and Kim Kelley.
  • Paris, Ill.: First Place to “Fat Blasters” team of Patrick Potter and John Comstock. Second Place to “Pink Ladies” team of Amber Brown and Sue Cox.
  • McAlester, Okla.: First Place to “Baby Got Back” team of Jana Banta and Sara Cable. Second Place to “The Tempers” team of Eric McNaughton and Virgil McAfee.
  • Vacaville, Calif.: First Place to “Double Trouble” team of Jim Jimminez and Rick Thacker Second Place to “The Sawyers” team of Maria De La Cruz and Teresa Santana.

The vinyl window manufacturer also reports that its Paris, Ill., wins the award for "lightest" facility, with a total loss of 308 pounds during the challenge. “The enthusiastic participation and involvement by employees across the country has prompted us to think about doing another competition in early 2011,” says Mundstock. “In the meantime, everyone can set personal goals and ‘buddy up’ with a partner to lose weight, eat healthier and embrace improved living habits.”