fit to be gold challenge: Eddie Singleton



Age: 60


STARTING WEIGHT: 274.6 pounds

TRAINER: Kenya "The Beast" Harvey

WHY PARTICIPATE? "I'm 60. I've done a lot of exercising in my life, like kickboxing and so forth. I've just gotten a little bit lax on the training routine. I thought this would be a good motivational factor to get me jump started again."

HAVE YOU TRIED TO LOSE WEIGHT IN THE PAST? "Not really. I've done some running in the past, and the kickboxing and things of that sort, sort of kept my weight down. But after you reach a certain age it seems like it doesn't want to shed as easily as it used to."

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE? "My biggest challenge is I'm a snacker at night. I own my own business, so when I get home in the evening time and everything's quiet I like to snack. I've changed the routine a bit. I haven't completely conquered it -- I have my lapses. Most of the time, if I stay active, then normally it's not a problem. If I sit there watching TV or something it's a problem. One of the ways I combat it is a protein shake that's very low-calorie."

IS IT HARD TO STAY MOTIVATED? "No. I enjoy working out."

HOW WILL YOUR LIFE CHANGE AFTER THE COMPETITION? "I don't know if it will change a lot. I think I'll probably just be a little bit more relaxed, energetic. A lot of times when I get home from work I'm just ready to call it a day versus going out and doing some things around the yard. So being energized might be the biggest thing."

HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR TRAINER? "Kenny's a good guy. He keeps me moving. I enjoy training with him. He's a lot of fun. He comes from a boxing background, I have a kickboxing background, so we sort of mesh together pretty good."

FAVORITE FOOD: "Peanut butter and jelly. That's my midnight snack."

THE DIET: "For me, it bothered me a little bit. I thought I would have a hard time winning the competition because I'm overweight, but I'm still fairly muscular, so I didn't think I'd be able to shed as much weight or percentage of weight as some people. But I wanted to shed it in a reasonable manner. I've watched my diet, I've tried to keep from eating as much as I used to eat, smaller portions. So I'm trying to do it that way. Just like I regularly eat, but make it a lot more reasonable portions."

Work on the core

Aging tends to reduce flexibility and balance. A yoga class or a functional core class is good for that and for cross-training. Working the core muscles, particularly muscles in the midsection and back, can improve posture and help avoid injury.

Sources: Jeff Poole, exercise specialist, University Hospital Heart & Vascular Institute; and Dr. Gary Pierce, exercise physiologist, Georgia Prevention Institute at GHSU