Oct. 17, 2013
MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin senior wide receiver Jared Abbrederis knows the importance of healthy eating and nutrition.
The 6-foot-2, 190-pound Abbrederis says he relies on healthy eating to keep him at the top of his game, which generally means catching passes in the end zone.
“What you put in your body is what you’re going to get out of it,” Abbrederis said. “You’re not going to have the energy to excel at your sport if you’re not eating right. If you eat nutritious food, you’re going to be a lot more successful.”
Beginning in October, Abbrederis and his fellow UW student-athletes are sharing that message with schools across Dane County in conjunction with UW Athletics’ new WiscFit program that aims to encourage healthy eating and exercise habits amongst youth in grades five through seven.
UW student-athletes will visit classrooms to speak with students about the importance of healthy eating and exercise and engage with them in an exercise-based activity. They will also assist the classroom in setting attainable goals for the year -- two benchmark goals and one ultimate goal. When a classroom reaches its goal, UW Athletics will reward it with a visit from Bucky Badger and certificates of achievement.
“Setting small, achievable goals is an important part of achieving your overall goals,” Abbrederis said. “It will be fun to help the students celebrate when they achieve their goals.”
|“It will be fun to help the students celebrate when they achieve their goals,” Abbrederis said.
The WiscFit program is a component of UW Athletics’ Badgers Give Back community outreach program that was unveiled in September 2012.
“We want the involvement of our student-athletes to be impactful, both for them and the community. As a department, we want to serve as a resource for the community,” said Kayla Gross, UW Athletics’ community relations coordinator. “WiscFit is a perfect example of us utilizing our specialty -- health and nutrition -- to address a social need. It’s something we’re excited about.”
UW student-athletes are excited about the program as well. Beyond the opportunity to influence local youth, the Badgers can also see the program as an chance to better prepare themselves for careers in health or exercise-related fields.
“As a dietetics major, the WiscFit program fits right in with what I want to do in the future,” said Katie Delaney, a junior on the women’s swimming and diving team. “The program will help me get more hands-on experience teaching kids about nutrition and helping them set tangible goals for eating better and being more active.”
For more information on the WiscFit program, contact Gross at firstname.lastname@example.org.