01/11/2012 07:47 EST | Updated 03/12/2012 05:12 EDT

Naheed Nenshi Ready To Take On Rob Ford In Fitness Fight


Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi says he's ready to take on Toronto Mayor Rob Ford in a battle of the bulge.

Ford and his brother, Coun. Doug Ford, said they will launch a public weight-loss campaign next week in Toronto and want other mayors — including Nenshi — to join them. The Ford brothers plan to do a weigh-in and then diet and exercise to reduce their waistlines.

Coun. Ford was quoted as saying the first mayor they will target is their friend in Calgary — because he has a little beef on the front of him.

Nenshi said he wouldn't mind taking part in the challenge, but hasn’t heard directly from either of the Fords.

“I think I've got to see something official from Mayor Ford and some stakes before it becomes a real challenge but you know, it's a good thing to do,” said Nenshi.

His office has already started its own New Year's weight-loss challenge.

“I really am a huge proponent of sport and recreation, as everyone knows, and one of the worst things about this last year is that I haven't really been able to take care of myself so, as a matter of fact, we have started a little fitness challenge in my own office this year for starting off 2012.”

Nenshi said he hasn't gained or lost any weight since becoming mayor, but concedes his schedule doesn't allow him to get to the gym as much as he used to.

“One thing that always surprises folks is that before I started this job, I was actually a bit of a gym rat and in fact took pretty good care of myself and this job hasn't been great for that, so it's important that we all — no matter how busy we are — we make time for good health.”