Dedication, diet and a workout routine paid off in a big way for Rebecca Privitera of Cabot when she won the Weight loss challenge sponsored by Team Beachbody, a national fitness company. The effort brought her home with a check for $100,000.
Privitera’s qualifier for the contest is the 220 pounds she lost in her three-year weight-loss quest.
"I think I stopped breathing," Privitera recalled of hearing her called out as the top winner.
The results of the competition were determined by votes cast on the Team Beachbody Website for each of the competitors.
"There were 31,000 people who signed up for the Challenge," Privitera said in a telephone interview.
The announcement was made during the Team Beachbody Summit, a convention-style meeting sponsored by the company, Privitera said. "There were like 12,000 people there for it," she said.
What happens next?
"Well, I am holding at 220 pounds lost. I’m happy. I feel good," she remarked.
She is considering using the money to pay for going back to school, "My husband and I are still talking about what to do."
But, Privitera said, more than ever she has the desire to help women who are struggling with their weight. "I want to continue being there for those who need it," she said.
She does not feel like a celebrity, "I am still the girl next door. That’s the way I was brought up," Privitera said.
There are no "American Idol" style obligations or tours, though there could be calls for her in some promotional events, she said. "They will call if there is somewhere I can fit in for them."
But now when the phone goes off at 4:30 a.m., and her husband asks, "who could that be texting at this hour?" "I say, ‘someone who needs help, and I answer it,’" Privitera said.