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Minister issues challenge to fitness showdown

Hon David Cunliffe
Minister of Health

4 April 2008 Media Statement

Minister issues challenge to fitness showdown

Health Minister David Cunliffe has challenged the Director General of Health, Stephen McKernan to a fitness showdown.

Mr Cunliffe, patron of Suburbs Rugby Club in his New Lynn electorate, has recruited the Club’s patron of pain, Leo Falaniko, to help him shed the pounds, get fit, and obliterate his opponent.

“Both of us are sadly middle-aged, appallingly unfit, and in obvious need of continuous improvement. We’re both expecting great amounts of sympathy from our spouses especially when it comes to resisting those Friday night takeaways.”

Mr Cunliffe, who turns 45 this month, and Stephen McKernan (46) will agree on a number of indicators to measure current fitness levels. These will be repeated in four months time to determine the winner.

“We’ll be using indicators like weight, body mass, oxygen saturation, resting pulse and blood pressure and any other humiliating tests I can come up with.

“I currently weigh in at around 90 kilos. I’m using this challenge to get down to my ‘ideal’ weight of 85 kilos and most importantly maintain it over the coming months and years with good diet and regular exercise.

“Stephen is rumoured to be considering a half marathon later in the year. I’m refusing to let him get one up on me and will be taking suggestions for an equally gruelling event I can take part in.”

The challenge begins at 11.45am today at Les Mills Gym in New Lynn where Mr Cunliffe will undergo a number of fitness tests.


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