Saturday, April 3, 2010

FitCity: The SUBWAY Fun Run with Jared

Find me today at Fity City- it's the blog on yesterday's SUBWAY Fun Run with Jared! Please click over and visit me there and leave a comment... it was a powerful experience for me and it's got me really excited for upcoming events, for making more healthy choices, for finding more ways to get fit!!


Jared Fogle gained fame a decade ago when he lost 245 lb by drastically changing his eating and exercise habits.  He started “The Subway Diet” and walked- a lot.  For a year, he stuck to a diet of low fat subs from Subway twice a day.  

Since then, he has worked for Subway to promote healthy food choices at Subway.  He has started The Jared Foundation- focusing on fighting and preventing childhood obesity.  Jared is currently training to run the ING NYC Marathon

Friday morning, FitCity Mom Blogger Amy and I met up at the Broad Ripple Subway to participate in the SUBWAY Fun Run with Jared.  It was a 2 mile run/walk on a stretch of The Monon Trail.  1 mile out, 1 mile back. 

I have to admit that I was nervous.  This was my first time participating in any kind of group event or really running around other people.  I was definitely outside of my comfort zone.  I was so glad to have Amy and her friend, Christy, to run and walk with.  There were about 150+ participants of varying levels of fitness. 

I was also impressed with the variety of footwear.  I even found someone wearing the same shoes I was wearing!  And there was 1 barefoot runner- he was very good.

I had a moment before the Run started to talk with Jared.  FitCity and The Jared Foundation have very similar goals.  Jared is passionate about fighting childhood obesity.  FitCity is focused on keeping families moving and making healthier food choices.  We had a lot in common through the purpose of our organizations.  I asked him what he thought the most important thing is that a parent can do to fight obesity in their kids.  I have to agree with him- Education and Prevention.  Jared said that it’s really important to educate kids about healthy choices and to have healthy options available.  More than that, parents need to educate themselves so that we know how to guide our children in making healthy choices.  Part of the plan laid out by The Jared Foundation includes partnership with parents- educating parents on at-risk behaviors of obesity and also helping busy families who eat meals out make better food choices in restaurants.  Jared also talked about the importance of being health educated before having kids- or as early in their lives as possible- so that a strong foundation of health is present from the start.

And he is a super nice guy.  Very friendly and not intimidating and it would be great to see him working with kids regularly.  I have great hope that The Jared Foundation can really reach out to kids and families through schools and other organizations (like FitCity) to spread the message and program.

And then there was that whole running thing.  2 miles. 

Having a running buddy was great.  We didn’t run together the entire time but we did stay close enough to pass each other back and forth and Amy and Christy were there as my cheering section as I crossed the finish line.  I am definitely proud of myself- but I am so proud of Amy!  She has made great strides in her health the past few months and I really admire her for it.  She is a huge part of my own inspiration and motivation to get fit.

I ran and walked the 2 miles in about 35 minutes.  I wasn’t last to finish.  I was at the back of the pack- and that was fine with me.  I ran when I could and I walked when I needed to recover.  I didn’t worry about how long I’d been running or what distance I’d run and then walked.  I just moved.  I ran and I walked until I was done.  A quote I heard recently was “Pain is temporary. Accomplishment doesn’t fade.”  I had pain and soreness.  But I pushed through.  And now I have an accomplishment that, just 6 weeks ago, I couldn’t have imagined completing.

As I ran and walked, I noticed the other people participating.  There were older women who were very fit.  There were young men and women.  There were some young men who seemed to be from a local high school.  There was a woman who seemed to be as new to all of it as I was and she had a very fit friend with her.  I was very impressed and touched- the very fit friend stayed by the other woman’s side.  She adjusted her pace so that she basically skipped beside her friend and stayed with her the entire time.  There were families- moms and dads and kids of almost all ages- from babies in jogging strollers to kids who looked to be around 10 – 12 years old.  There were thin people and overweight people.  There were people who walked and people who ran.  One of the strong runners did the 2 miles and then ran it a second time- and was giving smiles and waves of encouragement to those of us at the back of the pack. 

The main thing I took away from it was that all of these different shapes and colors and ages… we were all out there moving.  We were all people who have dedicated time and effort to being fit.  It felt incredible to be one of those people.  I also appreciated the sponsporship of Subway- they provided us gift cards and I know my family will use them.  Subway is one of my favorite places to take the kids because I can feed them healthier choices that they like and it’s easy for me to make healthier eating choices, too.

The more I make healthy choices for me, the more I make healthy choices for my family.  My kids and husband were at the Subway Fun Run yesterday to cheer me on.  My kids know I did a lot of walking this morning- I found a way to walk a total of 2.75 miles to run an errand and have breakfast with a friend.  My kids see me choosing healthier options in restaurants and choosing healthier places to eat.  Like Jared said, the best way to prevent and fight childhood obesity (and, therefore, adult obesity) is education of parents and kids.  I am educating myself and my kids about healthy choices.  More than that, I’m educating them through modeling of the behaviors and choices that I talk about.

What healthy choices have you made lately- for you?  For your kids?  What are you doing to educate yourself about food or exercise?  Have you participated in a Fun Run or 5K or other event before?  What do you gain from the experience?  How fun would it be to have  a Fit City Indianapolis Fun Run someday?  What do you think are the most important things we (as parents, as a community) can do to help children make healthier choices?