White House Council on Sports, Nutrition and Fitness talks to News 8

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Getting in-shape as we emerge from COVID pandemic

ROCHESTER, NY & WASHINGTON, D.C. (WROC) — May is National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, and as we come out of the COVID pandemic, a member of the President’s Council on Sports, Nutrition, and Fitness — Rob Wilkins — told News 8 now is the time to get moving.

For three years, Wilkins has been helping to create a healthier America on a national stage. He says the more we move, the more we can inspire others. In 2018, Wilkins was appointed by then-President Donald Trump to serve on the Council. He has since stayed on for the Biden administration. 

“If you dream big, things can happen. Why not you? Why not me?” he says.

An Air Force veteran and bodybuilder, Wilkins was a shoo-in for the position. With May being National Physical Fitness and Sports month, Wilkins is saying it’s never too late to, “Workout, be fit, eat right. Do these things and help your quality of life,” he says.

Especially as we start to emerge from COVID lockdowns and being more sedentary. He says to start small and build from there, even if it’s just walking an extra block a day. Go to the gym when you feel ready and, “don’t go out there and hurt yourself your first time back. You can’t pick up where you left off,” he says.

Wilkins with former Surgeon General Jerome Adams

The more you move he says, the more inspired you’ll become. “The more you move, the longer you live,” says Doctor Holly Russell at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Dr. Russell is a family medicine physician and director of clinical and community-based programs at the Center for Community Health & Prevention. She says getting fit helps mental health adding, “physical activity decreases depression, anxiety…it can help you sleep better.”

Eating right is another part of the equation. Wilkins says think lean meats, fruits, and veggies. “The more colorful your plate, the better off you’ll be,” he says.

Wilkins says everyone is different and finding what works for you is key. But however you can, get moving. “Living a life of vigor is important for all of us,” he says.

Wilkins also says to eat more. And no, he doesn’t mean big portions. But small, smart meals throughout the day to keep fueled and mind sharp. 

To read President Biden’s proclamation on National Physical Fitness and Sports month, click here.

Wilkins with Dr. Oz
Wilkins with Mark Wahlberg

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