Weight loss program begins 8th season

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) Twenty-six contestants embark on a 15-week weight loss journey starting Sunday. Fort Wayne’s Smallest Winner kicks off with its season 8 orientation in the afternoon.

This year, the theme is called “the Year of the Snowman,” named after a snowman’s shape– the number 8, which is the average amount of weight people loose each week. In season 7, participants lost more than 1,000 pounds.

Co-founder of Smallest Winner Rick Walters said more than 100 people applied to be a part of the program and 26 people were chosen to be part of this season.

One of the contestants from season 7, Julie Pedreza joined News Channel 15 on First News Sunday to talk about her experience with the program. She’s lost 60 pounds since starting Fort Wayne’s Smallest Winner last year.

“It was scary in the beginning, definitely very nerve-racking…. But as you get in it, you get more comfortable. Fort Wayne’s Smallest Winner is like a family,” Pedreza said.

Watch the video above to hear more about her weight loss experience and what the season 8 contestants will face as they work hard to shed the pounds and in the end complete a half-marathon.

The season finale is on July 11.

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