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Living Healthy

Posted Feb 16, 2011

On Wednesday, Knowshon Moreno spoke to a group of student reporters about eating healthy and exercising before fielding their questions as part of the Fuel Up to Play 60 program.

DENVER -- On Wednesday, Knowshon Moreno faced the tough questions.

What was your diet like as a kid? How fast can you run a mile? How many calories do you lose at football practice? What is your favorite vegetable and fruit?

"You never really think about those things," Moreno smiled. "There were definitely some good questions and questions that I still need to kind of figure out."

Standing at the podium in the INVESCO Field at Mile High media room, student reporters asked the running back questions as part of the Western Dairy Association and Denver Broncos' Fuel Up to Play 60 program.

Fuel Up to Play 60 is a nationwide, in-school program that encourages children to get active and play for at least 60 minutes a day, alongside a healthy diet that helps them fuel up with nutrient-rich foods like low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains.

Thirty-two students and their advisors from 16 schools within the Douglas County, Greeley-Evans, Jefferson County, Thompson, Poudre, Denver Public Schools and Pueblo City Schools Districts were on hand to find out more about Moreno's eating and exercise habits.

The student reporters were sent some tips to prepare for the press conference that included looking the subject in the eye when asking questions, listening carefully to his answers, taking notes throughout the session and thanking the subject for his time at the end.

"They did a real good job today," Moreno said. "They almost stumped me a couple times, but I had to bounce back. It was a great job from them today."

In addition to Moreno, students heard from Western Dairy Association CEO Cindy Haren as well as Scott Pickert, a dairy farmer from Berthoud, Colo.

After the press conference, the students got the chance to meet with representatives from various media outlets, ranging from 850 KOA to a Denver Broncos media relations manager, who doled out advice on how to ask the right questions and put the information in a story.

The next step in the process is for each student reporter to write a story about what they learned. The students will then publish their report at their school, whether that means telling the story at an assembly, writing for the school newspaper, appearing on camera or posting it to a website. From there, the stories will be sent to Western Dairy and each student has a chance to win two tickets to a Broncos home game.

"What you do and what you say really does matter," Haren told the crowd. "What you're doing today and the stories that you take back to your schools are really incredibly important. Your leadership is helping spread the word about healthy eating and being physically active, and that's really important."

The Fuel Up to Play 60 program -- which was launched in 2009 by the National Dairy Council and the NFL in collaboration with the United States Department of Agriculture -- is involved with more than 70,000 schools across the country and 1,200 schools in Colorado. Western Dairy's goal is to get 1 million students engaged in the program in Colorado, Montana and Wyoming by the end of the 2011 school year.

"I'm a huge believer in it," Moreno said of the program. "In my profession, I couldn't do the things I do without eating the right things and just getting out there and exercising."

Wednesday wasn't the first time Moreno has been involved in the campaign. Last summer, he spent a day working with Western Dairy on a photo shoot, commercial and autograph session. He also recorded announcements that were used locally as well as across the country in schools to help motivate students to stay active.

"Just stay active and have fun doing it," he said of his message. "It's good for your body, it's good for your health. Why not start now?"

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