Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and Councillor Doug Ford entered the Cut the Waist Challenge. The brothers, alongside former Ontario Progressive Conservative Party leader John Tory, urged the rest of the city to step up to the challenge.
Toronto Mayor Rob Ford once called himself “300 pounds of fun.” He has also been criticized and mocked by his opponents for being overweight. During the municipal election campaign and since entering office, Ford has generally been self-deprecating of his weight.
Soon to be 225 lbs of fun?
On Monday morning, Ford and his brother, Councillor Doug Ford, officially launched “Mayor Ford’s Cut The Waist Challenge.” In front of dozens of members of the media and public, the Ford brothers weighed in.
Prior to the weigh-in, each brother patted the other down outside of the Mayor’s Office to ensure they were not carrying any extra objects and additional weight, such as pineapples. The brothers made a bet and Ford said he trusted his brother with taxpayers’ money, but “I don’t trust him with my money.”
Alongside former Ontario PC leader John Tory, who introduced everyone and the challenge and noted that he is a “recovering politician and recovering fatty,” the mayor measured his weight on an antique scale and he stands at 5’10” and 329 lbs.
The mayor continued to mistakenly say that he was 229 lbs, which prompted Tory to correct him. His brother mocked him and said, “When you were in grade school you were 229.”
City Councillor Dough Ford patting down his brother, Mayor Rob Ford, before the weigh-in.
Councillor Ford also checked his weight. The rookie councillor stands at 5’11” and 275 lbs. Both brothers vowed to lose 50 lbs by June 18. However, the mayor stated that he may continue to lose weight after the challenge because his ultimate goal is 225 lbs.
“I look forward to rising up to the challenge and making a healthy change in my life,” said Ford. “As you all know, over the past year I’ve worked hard to cut the waste here at City Hall. Now I’d invite all Toronto to join me in cutting a different type of waist. I hope that everyone can join me in making a healthy choice and lose weight.”
When asked why he is starting the weight-loss challenge now, the mayor said he and his brother decided that now was the time.
“It’s the heaviest I’ve ever been,” explained the mayor. “Doug and I went down to Florida and we just discussed it. I’ve got young children and this is not healthy, you can’t be running the city, you can’t be doing all this at 330 pounds, you guys know it, I know it.”
Former Ontario PC leader John Tory looks on Toronto Mayor Rob Ford speaking to reporters at a media event.
Noting that he likes ice cream late at night, Ford said that he has to cut that out and exercise. He wants to exercise more and eat healthier. In a sign of change, there is a bowl of a dozen or so apples on the desk of the Mayor’s Office reception area.
The Fords will conduct a public weigh-in every Monday for the next six months at 9:30 a.m. The mayor urged the rest of the city to participate because he knows Torontonians can lose weight faster than any other North American city.
Councillors Gary Crawford and Frances Nunziata also tipped the scales following the media event.
Cut The Waist Challenge Facts
According to a media release from Councillor Ford’s office:
City Councillor Doug Ford checks his weight in front of the Mayor's Office.
- The Mayor’s Office will not be collecting donations for any charities. People wishing to make donations can make one to one of their choosing.
- No tax dollars will be used to organize this initiative.
- There is no cost to join this effort. Furthermore, residents interesting in participating can measure their weight on the scale and can share their weight loss stories.
- No one has to publicly announce their total weight.
For more information about this initiative and updates, please visit the challenge’s website: CutTheWaist.ca.