CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The man who started the Cooper River Bridge Run has spearheaded a new initiative to make Charleston a healthier community. Dr. Marcus Newberry and a committee, Mayor Joe Riley, area schools and hospitals are all partnered up for the "Lighten Up Charleston" campaign.
"With health you do it with other people. It's been shown that people who do this in groups do better," Newberry said.
"The mission of 'Lighten Up Charleston' is to reduce obesity by promoting healthy eating and physical activity," Riley said.
Schools and hospitals will encourage people to exercise regularly and choose healthy foods and cook them at home.
The city hopes that after one year, the community as a whole can lose 100,000 pounds. The city is pushing people to use the website lightenupcharleston.org to track their weight loss progress.
"Anybody that wants to join, we welcome them. The whole idea is to try to motivate the whole city to get up and get moving. Any program people need help with, we'll be glad to help them," Newberry said.
Newberry says he started a similar community wide weight loss initiative in Greenville, which he says was very successful and he is hoping to see the same success here.
The community wide weigh in results will be revealed in a year. Riley hopes to make the Lighten Up Charleston health fair an annual event coinciding with the bridge run.