Pound For Pound Challenge Benefits Food Bank

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HILLSIDE – Biggest Loser finalist Amanda Arlauskas will kick off the Community FoodBank of New Jersey’s efforts in the Pound for Pound Challenge on Thursday, Feb. 18, from 5-7 p.m. (31 Evans Terminal, Hillside).  Arlauskas lost more than 85 pounds on the show last fall, which saw her finish third in the December finale.

Arlauskas, a Butler native, will tell her inspiring story, give health and fitness tips, and lead challenge contestants on a fitness walk inside the FoodBank.  The event is open to the public and will feature a variety of info stations, nutritious food samples and the opportunity to sign up for the challenge and support the Community FoodBank of New Jersey.

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NBC’s The Biggest Loser, General Mills, Subway, 24 Hour Fitness, Walgreen’s and Feeding America are partnering on the Pound For Pound Challenge, a program that encourages residents in the state and Americans across the country to lose weight nationally to help provide hunger relief locally. For a second year, for every pound of weight participants pledge to lose, a pound of groceries will be delivered to a local food bank. To date, more than 50,000 pounds have been pledged in the Community FoodBank of New Jersey’s service area, placing it in the top 20 nationally.

Recent data has shown a sharp 45% rise in need for emergency food in New Jersey. Nationwide, more than 49 million Americans struggled to get enough to eat at some point in 2008, the highest total in 14 years, making it the ideal time to get involved in the fight against hunger.

“It is tragic that so many people in New Jersey don’t have regular access to food,” said Lindsey Vogel, Nutrition Education Coordinator and Pound for Pound Challenge Organizer.  “At these rates, we all likely know someone affected by hunger and can help them in a big way by simply participating in the Pound For Pound Challenge.”

To join the challenge, people are encouraged to attend Thursday’s event – get nutrition tips and signup on the spot – or visit www.PFPChallenge.com or www.BiggestLoser.com and enter their weight loss goals. For every pound of weight participants pledge to lose, the Pound For Pound Challenge will donate 14 cents to Feeding America – enough to deliver one pound of groceries to a local food bank – up to a maximum donation of $800,000.

To wake up Americans to the hunger issue, General Mills recently committed to donate 49 million bowls of Big G cereal made with whole grain to Feeding America for delivery to local food banks. General Mills CEO Ken Powell, NBC’s The Biggest Loser’s Bob Harper and Feeding America president and CEO Vicki B. Escarra travelled across the country to rally Americans to join the cause.

“I’m so inspired by the commitment I’ve already seen from Americans to help those who struggle to put food on the table,” said Bob Harper, trainer, NBC’s The Biggest Loser. “More than 1 million pounds have already been pledged to the Pound For Pound Challenge, and that momentum will only continue as we highlight the program on our show.”

On www.PFPChallenge.com, dieters also can get helpful meal and weight loss tips from Yoplait, MultiGrain Cheerios, Larabar, Muir Glen, Eat Better America, Subway and 24 Hour Fitness.

“24 Hour Fitness is committed to helping people achieve their workout and weight-loss goals,” said Tony Wells, Chief Marketing Officer of 24 Hour Fitness. “There is no better motivation to stay dedicated to a healthy lifestyle than to join the Pound For Pound Challenge.”


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