Jared Fogle, the man who famously lost weight with exercise and Subway sandwiches, spends about 100 days per year traveling to elementary schools around the country to deliver his message about being healthy.
“Since the kids know me from TV, hopefully the message will have a little more meaning to them,” said Fogle, who began gaining excessive weight in third grade.
On Wednesday, the 34-year-old spoke at Spokane’s Holmes Elementary School. Fogle was kicking off an “I Pledge” campaign that encourages kids as well as people in the Spokane community to “eat better, exercise more and live a healthier lifestyle.”
“Unfortunately, more and more kids are going down the same path that I did. And it’s no wonder why…with all the sedentary activities,” said Fogle, who confessed to the children he used to sit for hours playing video games, watching television and surfing the Internet.
At his heaviest, Fogle weighed 425 pounds. Being that heavy meant he was unable to fit in a movie seat, his college desks were too small and even walking was a challenge.
Fogle carries the pants he wore – a 60-inch waist. When he shows them, the children chuckle and gasp.
“When I was your age, if someone had come up to me and said I was going to wear 60-inch pants, I would have said ‘no way,’ ” Fogle said.
Fogle was 20 when he embarked on the Subway diet – two sandwiches per day plus Baked Lays potato chips and Diet Coke. Within three months he lost 100 pounds. After a year he had lost 245 pounds. As Fogle dropped the weight, he began walking 30 minutes a day.
“I lost one of you in a month,” he told the kids. Eating a balanced diet and exercising makes all the difference, he said.
Mitchell Hiems, a Holmes sixth-grader, said, “It’s amazing that he could do that.”
Fifth-grader Charlie Gooch plans to take Fogle’s advice. “I plan to quit playing video games for a long time,” he said. Fogle “was very inspiring to some kids. I think it’s cool he turned his life around. It will help a lot of kids – like me.”