Theme park cast member stories: Walt Disney World's ultimate weight-loss plan
Published: January 4, 2010 at 11:04 AM
The Tom Sawyer Island Plan.
Step one - drive (or fly) to the Walt Disney World Casting Center. (You can use the west coast version of this plan by going to Disneyland's casting center, but you won't sweat off nearly as much weight working in Anaheim as you will working the summer in Orlando.)
Step two - apply for and get a job driving the Tom Sawyer Island rafts. (Having freckles can be a big advantage here. Apparently, Disney casting reps really want to find the people most likely to fry in the sun.)
Step three - spend six to eight hours a day, standing up, driving shadeless rafts and walking up and down the paths on Tom Sawyer Island. Moving the raft tiller will work the upper body, providing your strength training, while walking the island gives you lower-body and cardio workouts.
Step three - continue work into the summer, when Orlando's heat and humidity turn each shift into a six-to-eight-hour sauna, complementing your workout. (Bonus: If you can score an old-school polyester double-knit TSI costume, you'll sweat like a high school wrestler in a rubber suit, trying to make weight.)
Step four - take your fitness to the next level by extending to work the roll-out crew for Parade Audience Control. Clipping parade route ropes together provides a high-tension resistance workout, while rolling the parade rope from a 40-lb. spool strapped to your chest is the ultimate in Disney attractions weight training.
(Advanced students who find that the Tom Sawyer Island Plan no longer delivers desired results may choose at this time to transfer to entertainment and don a full-body character suit. Ideally one with a ginormous, heavy head. This not only doubles the sauna effect, but also develops your balance and ESP, as you attempt to identify little kids who'll pull your tail, before they actually do.)
After just three months on this plan, you'll often find yourself in the Disney cast cafeteria, scarfing down a 5,000-calorie basket of nachos... while still losing weight.
Some folks might try to sell you on the Haunted Mansion Plan, with its miles and miles of walking the load and unload belts. And while that plan is a great choice for people who want a long-distance cardio workout, the Mansion's indoor setting will rob you of the outdoor sauna effect. In addition, you won't get the same upper body work as you will wrestling the TSI rafts.
Unfortunately, Disney has discontinued its sadistic "Mike Fink Keelboats Plan," which provided all the benefits of the Tom Sawyer Island Plan, while forcing you to balance on a rickety keelboat while also spieling - doubling the cardio work and forcing you into in a yoga-like level of breath control.
See your Disney casting rep to sign up today! ;-)