Janesville46.5°

Weight-loss challenge raises food for the hungry

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ROCHELLE B. BIRKELO
May 14, 2010
— Adam Strunz’s loss is other people’s gain.

The 29-year-old Janesville man set a goal of getting healthier mentally and physically while helping others in his community.


Strunz, who is youth and family pastor at Footville Church of Christ, accomplished his goal by participating in the Million Pound Challenge.


For every pound of weight lost by a person in the challenge, the Princeton Club and other corporate sponsors buy 10 pounds of food, up to 1 million pounds, for Second Harvest.


Since the challenge kicked off at the beginning of the year, 5,868 people and 333 teams have pledged to lose enough weight to raise more than 1.5 million pounds of food. To date, weight loss and exercise achievements have resulted in 464,731 pounds of food to benefit food pantries, said Anna Nelson external relations manager of Second Harvest Foodbank of Southern Wisconsin, Madison.


Second Harvest distributes food to more than 400 programs, food pantries, shelters and meal sites in 16 counties.


The challenge continues through May 31.


Strunz started Feb. 12, weighing 213 pounds. His goal was to lose 20 pounds, enough weight so 200 pounds of food would be donated to ECHO, the charity of his choice. Strunz lives near ECHO, where he also volunteers.


“I want to have a positive impact and be able to donate to the community. This is a way to do that,’’ he said.


He’s now 31 pounds lighter.


“I feel a lot different—more energetic, more confident,’’ he said.


Strunz, who is married with a 2-year-old daughter and another child on the way, said he needed to start taking care of his body so he could serve others better.


“One of my goals was to be more effective in my job,’’ he said.


Strunz joined the local YMCA, where he religiously works out for 90 minutes six days a week. Three days are devoted to cardiovascular exercise, and the other days focus on strength training. He changed his diet to incorporate six small meals a day.


“It’s been a blessing,” Strunz said.


“I feel more effective at everything I do.”



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