Bet Big, Get Small: Online diet wager helps to shed pounds

Treena Brannock walks at Riverfront Park to help her with her Healthy Wage weight loss challenge.

COLUMBIA (WACH)-There's a popular approach to weight loss that's taking the nation by storm.

Challengers put up dollars hoping to put off the pounds. Treena Brannock is taking a healthy wage challenge and is determined to cash in.

"I've got to do it for myself," says Brannock who's had enough, trying diet after diet with little results.

"I've tried different things, I've lost weight I've gained weight," expresses Brannock.

She decided to make a change in her weightloss journey.

"I get healthy, I get slimmer, feel better about myself and over all," declares Brannock "I will win some money at the end."

Brannock learned about Healthy Wage through her employer.

Its one of many online programs where you pledge money, set a weight loss goal, if you reach your goal you win your money back and more.

"It gave a kind of different incentive."

A recent study shows that people who use money as motivation are five times more likely to reach their goal weight.

Brannock, however, didn't stop with just her company challenge.

"[I] joined the challenge, got on the team and actually challenged myself too on a separate wager to lose so many pounds by a certain date."

In just a few weeks, Brannock has already lost several pounds, far from her goal but its an exciting start

"Because I am changing my lifestyle. I'm trying yoga for the first time, I'm trying to get out and do more walking, get more exercise."

So how realistic is it for Brannock and hundreds of others to reach their goal?

Healthy Wage creators say about one third of pepole actually reach their goal and win the money.

"Ultimately I want my health, my blood work, everything to come back better, get off some of the medicine I'm on. Do the things with my nieces and nephews and my brothers and sisters that I have been missing lately. Those are my goals overall."

To Brannock the fewer pounds and extra cash are just an added perk, its really more about walking into a healthier path ahead.

Healthy Wage uses a special formula based on a participants body mass index (BMI) to determine just how much money they'll win.

Its absolutely free to sign up, the only cost is the bet you make.

The winnings come from corporate clients who pay into the program and from those who unfortunately fall short of their goals.

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