I am sponsoring 30 children to run in the inaugural Cowtown Marathon C.A.L.F. 5K. They will run 3.1 miles on September 27th in Trinity Park down the street from my office.
I am doing this to again thank this wonderful city for the privilege of practicing law here for the last 30 years.
I have mentioned here before that I have become passionate about exercising as I have gotten older and want others -- especially our children -- to become physically fit.
It is shocking that 61 percent of Texans are overweight or obese. And obesity in Texas children has reached crisis proportions, with more than than 35 percent of them being overweight or obese.
This number has doubled over the last 20 years -- and it continues to rise.
Why should we care if our kids are overweight? Because studies show that they wil suffer far more from cardiovascular disease, strokes, hypertension, high blood pressure, Type 2 (adult) diabetes, gallbladder disease, asthma, cancers, depression, and many other serious physical and mental problems.
A child who is obese by age 12 has more than a 75 percent chance of becoming an obese adult. And their kids will presumably be as well.
I joined the C.A.L.F. (Children's Activities for Life and Fitness) Council when it started last year. Our mission is to educate and equip Fort Worth area students for lifelong health and fitness. We have sponsored children in other races, given them running shoes, and worked with PE teachers in the FWISD.
I hope that a lot of the children at the Rufino Menoza Elementary School that I adopted six years ago will run the CALF 5K race.
For more information about the C.A.L.F. Council or to sign up for the race, click here.
Addendum from New York Times columnist September 22,2010:
"From the very opening session of this year's World Economic Forum here in Tianjin, our Chinese hosts did not hesitate to do some comparing. China's CCTV aired a skit showing four children -- one wearing the Chinese flag, another the American, another the Indian, and another the Brazilian -- getting ready to run a race. Before they take off, the American child, "Anthony," boasts that he will win "because I always win," and he jumps out to a big lead. But soon Anthony doubles over with cramps. "Now is our chance to overtake him for the first time!" shouts the Chinese child. "What's wrong with Anthony?" asks another. "He is overweight and flabby," says another child. "He ate too many hamburgers."
That is how they see us."