Richard Simmons On Capitol Hill
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[Richard Simmons On Capitol Hill]
[Chairman:] Source: LYBIO.net
First is Richard Simmons, who needs little introduction, but is a national leading fitness expert and advocate who has helped millions of overweight men and women lose close to 3 million pounds by adopting sensible, balanced eating programs and exercise regimens that are energetic, fun, and motivating.
Mr. Simmons has prevailed over his own weight problems as a child and has helped tailor fitness workouts for all Americans including the physically challenged and older Americans.
[Milton Teagle Simmons (born July 12, 1948):]
Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. My name is
Richard Simmons, and I never took a P.E. class in my life.
I was overweight. I was short. I was lethargic.
It wasn’t on before? Can I start over? [Laughter.]
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Chairman MILLER. Take two. [Laughter.]
Mr. SIMMONS. Good morning, ladies and gentlemen. My name is Richard Simmons, and I never took a P.E. class in my life. I was overweight, a little lethargic, a little short. At St. Louis Cathedral School in New Orleans, it was all sports. And I was not a jock. I spent my elementary school, my high school, and my college sitting on the benches watching everyone play sports. And to get back at them, while they were playing sports, I ate
their lunch. [Laughter.]
I was 268 pounds. I tried a lot of ways to lose weight, including taking laxatives, throwing up, starving, because I never took P.E. I was 23 years old. When I took my first exercise class, I was bitten by the sweat bug.
Twenty-five years ago, I opened up—excuse me—36 years ago, I opened my exercise studio up in Los Angeles, and there I began my pilgrimage to help people overweight, out of shape, 200 pounds, 400 pounds, 800 pounds.
And I have dedicated all these years to giving them some support and some self-esteem. Five years ago, my mail shifted dramatically. I get thousands of e-mails a day. But when the No Child Left Behind Act came about, I got lots of letters from parents and children saying my kid is overweight. My kid is going to the doctors. My kid has high cholesterol.
So what I did was I went to shows like the ‘Today Show,’ ‘Ellen,’ ‘David Letterman,’ ‘Howard Stern,’ and I put a four-page questionnaire on Richard Simmons.com, and 60,000 people filled out that questionnaire. And I learned what was happening in the schools in the United States of America.
[Richard Simmons:] Source: L Y B I O . N E T
I took a trip to Washington to meet Congressman Wamp and Congressman Kind. I told them my ideas. I began another campaign on my Web site asking people to write their congressmen and presidential candidates in order to let everyone know how important this is.
And here I stand with a vision today. Everyone is not a jock. Everyone cannot play sports. Everyone cannot run. But everyone can be fit. It is not important if you are a jock. It is important that you have your health. And your children right now do not have it.
I have a vision. I know of a very economical way to bring fitness to every child in every school in the United States of America. There are hundreds of thousands of certified fitness instructors who travel around and teach classes. I want to head and be part of this committee to train teachers to go into the school system and teach the three things that we all need.
We all need cardio. We all need strength training. And we all need stretching. Every school that I have been in, I put the kids’ music on. I get them going. They feel great. And as Congressman Wamp and Congressman Kind said, when you are feeling great about yourself, when you have self-esteem
and self-respect for yourself, there is nothing you can’t do.
I am not 268 pounds any more, and I am still not a jock. But I am fit. And I have dedicated my life to this. And I am hoping that the committee today will know there is no other way to do this. Our children will get more sick. And there is a statistic that says our children today will not live as long as their parents. What have we done? What have we done to the kids of the United States of America? This is wrong.
And I will dedicate the rest of my life and, Chairperson George Miller, I just may run for office to help this really get through and not have one kid feel lousy about himself because he can’t throw a ball. One kid who cannot run a mile, he cannot be made fun of. We have to support him and what he can do.
Every child can dance. Every child can dance. I have seen it. I travel 200 days a year, and I see what happens when the music goes on—their music, not mine—when the music goes on, they feel so good about themselves they go back in that school room and they learn. I do not want any child in America to have my childhood because it was taken away from me because I just wasn’t good enough. Well, I am good enough now, and I have devoted—I am 60 years old now. And I have devoted my life to this, and I will devote my life to this to the day I die. And I hope that one day every kid gets to feel the self-esteem and self-respect that I have. God bless you all, and God bless the children of America.
[Richard Simmons:] Source: L Y B I O . N E T
Thank you very much. [Applause.]
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Richard Simmons On Capitol Hill. We all need cardio. We all need strength training. And we all need stretching. Complete Full Transcript, Dialogue, Remarks, Saying, Quotes, Words And Text.