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Michelle Obama, Jimmy Fallon Celebrate 3rd Anniversary of Let's Move!

By guest blogger Gina Cairney

What do you get when you combine First Lady Michelle Obama, Jimmy Fallon, and an enthusiasm for healthy living?

A race around the White House.

And possibly one of the most awkward demonstrations of mom-dancing you'll ever witness.

On Wednesday, Mrs. Obama will kick off a two-day nationwide tour to celebrate the third anniversary of her Let's Move! initiative, which launched on Feb. 9, 2010, to improve the health of the country's children.

The tour will include a visit by the first lady to Clinton, Miss., Wednesday, where she'll be joining TV personality and cooking show host Rachel Ray to highlight healthy lunches being served at schools across the country.

The tour will continue Thursday in Chicago, the Obama's hometown, to emphasize the importance of bringing physical activity back to schools. Then the first lady will end her tour in Springfield, Mo., to look at what changes Walmart has made to make healthier foods more affordable.

Since the program started, more families now have access to information that will help them make healthier choices, according to the Let's Move! blog, and provide young people with more opportunities to engage in physical activity.

The first lady's initiative to prevent childhood obesity and emphasize healthy eating is perhaps one of the most comprehensive attempts at cultivating healthy habits at a young age.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention approximates that 17 percent of children in the United States between 2 and 19 years old, and more than a third of adults, are obese.

One report suggests that if the obesity rate isn't addressed soon, some states could see a 60 percent obesity rate by 2030.

But there's hope that the crisis can be headed off.

Various studies have shown the benefits of physical activity, not only on children's health but their academic performance as well, pointing to the critical importance of incorporating recess at school, or getting children to participate in some kind of physical activity outside school time.

If children don't want to participate in competitive sports, modest weight loss and better health can be achieved through physical activity programs, self-monitoring, and parental help.

Even dancing, like, say, the "Interlude Dance", or yes, the Harlem Shake could be a modest enough physical exertion to promote some kind of health benefit.

Get your dance pants on and shake it.

Want all the latest K-12 sports news? Follow @SchooledInSport on Twitter.

Video: Jimmy Fallon takes on First Lady Michelle Obama in five small competitions around the White House to promote Let's Move!

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