Cleveland says its Phat to be Fit

Cleveland wants to get rid of muffin tops, saddle bags and beer bellies.

To do so, the city is partnering with 4 area hospitals (Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals-Case, MetroHealth and Sisters of Charity Hospital System) to promote its Healthy Cleveland campaign, launched in Feb 2011. In addition, Cleveland Councilman Joe Cimperman has proposed legislation to: 1) ban smoking in public places 2) prevent restaurants from serving food containing trans-fats.

I see both sides of the debate.

a) we need to reverse our fat stats (per government reports, a vast majority of Americans are overweight, 34% are obese – scary!)
b) unhealthier citizens = higher health insurance, cost, etc
c) most of us don’t read the nutrition labels or know the ingredients of the food we eat (refined grains, high-fructose corn syrup, what?)
d) Cleveland was the 77th Fattest City in America, per men’s health – gross!

a) Let people smoke if they like and eat what they want.
b) Allow businesses to prepare and serve food without involvement from the government, trans fats or not.

If I could testify to a few things:
Cleveland is Overweight. I’ve traveled quite a bit and after being in another country or city for some time, one of the first things I’ve noticed upon landing in CLE is our bigger waistlines. It was not something I looked for but rather too noticeable to ignore. Cold weather may have a play but is it really an excuse? We have places to work out indoors – they are called gyms.
Letting myself go. I have been guilty of it and during those times, I felt unattractive, unconfident and it affected my life outside of my health. I’m not where I want to be yet but since committing to CrossFit Cle and yoga, it has made a positive impact on all aspects of my life. I’ve made new friends through these activities, become more disciplined and responsible, feel better when dressing for the weekend, and increasing my endorphins equals a happier me!
Transfats – didn’t really know what they were before and I still have more to learn. But here’s a helpful link from the FDA. When grocery shopping, placing more fruits and veggies in my shopping cart is definitely helping my skinny jeans.
Setting goals and making progress. When I first started CrossFit Cle, I couldn’t even do a a true push-up. I had to kneel and could barely get through 5. Last week, I did completed 54 ‘real’ push-ups as part of a workout.
We’re not that young or in school anymore so we don’t get test grades, compete in sports or get a gauge on how we’re doing in areas of our lives. Achievement brings awareness and helps liven things up.

So with Cleveland launching the health campaign, here are some ideas I came up with (Please feel free to submit other ideas via Comments below and answer the polls!):
– Sponsor or promote events in the parks for families to get outside
– Analyze what school cafeterias are serving students
– Provide CSA credits for low income families
– Don’t cut P.E out of our schools curriculum
– Biggest loser program?
– Hold the campaign accountable, establish goals and monitor progress towards those goals (too many times, we’re bombarded with initiatives, plans and efforts but whatever happens to them?)
– Make it safe for people to walk in their neighborhoods
– Reinforce how much fruits and veggies we should eat per day
– Promote a 21 day cleanse program – Inquire with the Cleveland Food Bank if there is a greater need for healthier foods donations
– Host a website to:
– Interview and document people’s weight loss transformations
– Publish Cleveland health stats
– Interview certified trainers from yoga studios, Zumba classes, boot camp so people have more knowledge of their options
– Run programs in the Cleveland gov to support weight loss
– Provide free fruits in Cleveland city offices

– And I really like these info bits from Men’s health
– You have to give Texas legislators credit: They’re trying to fight the state’s weight problem with a bill requiring chain restaurants to list nutrition information, including calorie counts, on their menus. Yale University researchers recently found that this dietary disclosure prompted people to order meals with nearly 15 percent fewer calories. “People may have ordered less because many of the numbers are shocking, with most appetizers containing half a day’s worth of calories,” says study author Christina Roberto, M.S. Go to to see if your politicians are pushing for greater nutritional transparency.
– It may not feel like “exercise,” but walking does burn calories; plus, the only gear you need is a pedometer, a notepad, and a pen. In a recent British study, men who wore pedometers and then wrote down their total steps at the end of each day walked 11 percent more than those who didn’t put pen to paper. “Recording your steps motivates you to beat your level of activity from the previous day,” says study coauthor Stacy Clemes, Ph.D.

And if this hasn’t convinced you, then this will for sure (CrossFit Athlete of the Month – Bizzle)

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1 Response to Cleveland says its Phat to be Fit

  1. Pingback: Lacking Direction | The Importance of Being Cleveland

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