LOVE COUNTY, OK -- Love county officials have been competing in a statewide health competition for the past few months and last week, they found out they've won!
Court clerk, Shelly Russell, and deputy, Cody Black, were just two of 31 employees of the Love County courthouse and the sheriff's office who took part in the statewide "gridiron" competition.
They were up against hundreds of employees of 26 other counties in a challenge to get fit and improve their lifestyles.
"Get us as healthy as we can, try to shed some pounds, and all around live a better life," says Black.
"Healthier bodies, more hydrated, less workers compensation claims, less health problems, different things like that," said Russell.
Russell and a few other teammates accepted a $10,000 check from the Oklahoma Association of County Commissioners last Thursday in Norman, on behalf of the Love county participants.
The money will be divided between the employees who took part.
"They did what they called a gridiron contest and on this grid iron contest, it was for four months, equaled to like four quarters, and each quarter you had to go by the criteria and once the criteria was done you received points," said Russell.
Russell says the 31 employees who took part lost a total of 216 pounds.
But to them, it wasn't about numbers.
"For a lot of us, it was a lifestyle change. It wasn't just getting up and getting motivated, getting up and exercising, it was really a lifestyle change," said Russell.
Russell says encouraging each other each day is what made their team successful.
"'Okay, who's going to go walk. Are you going to walk? Or are you going to do this?'...And it made it so nice. We're planning to do this more. I mean, this is going to be something for Love county from now on," said Russell.
"It's awesome to know that we came in first place. It says a whole lot for us and that we work as a team and I think that better benefits us for the future; that we can all pull together and get something accomplished," said Black.