The obesity epidemic is weighing down on today’s youth. Now, a state-wide competition is challenging students and community members to make a change, and head down a more healthy path. Here in the desert, two cities are battling to become the fittest of them all.
Valley students are ready for a challenge, a race toward fitness, health and a stronger community.
There’s a little friendly competition going on between Palms Springs and Coachella, as they begin the 2009 Governor’s Fitness Challenge.
The challenge encourages the two city’s residents to exercise 30-60 minutes at least 3 days a week. They can choose any activity they want, and which ever city works harder, will win.
“We are very confident that Coachella and the schools in Coachella will perform well,” says Coachella Mayor, Eduardo Garcia.
“The challenge is on. We’ll see how it all turns out in 30 days,” says Palm Springs Mayor, Steve Pougnet.
More than 30 thousand Californians will compete for thirty days. While individuals strength their minds and bodies, schools move closer to big rewards. The top three schools win a 100 thousand dollar fitness center and eleven regional winners get 5 thousand dollars.
“We know how hard the budget cuts are in this state,” says Pougnet. ” Any opportunity to get money for fitness is a huge, huge deal.”
Although both Palm Springs and Coachella hope to get the money and the title, in this challenge everyone is a winner.
“If you learn at a young age how to exercise and how great you feel afterwards, you carry it on for the rest of your life,” says Jake Steinfeld, Chairman of the Governor’s Fitness Challenge.