The trim Cahill told senators Oklahoma needs to put healthy choices in their school lunch program and make physical education mandatory.
Cahill, who once weighed 439 pounds, said the Biggest Loser television show gave him a “second chance” at life, and Oklahoma children deserve the same.
Cahill, of Broken Arrow, lost 239 pounds in seven months on NBC’s reality television program. To date, Cahill has lost more weight than any other contestant on the show. Cahill, a land surveyor, lost 55.58 percent of his original weight while on the show, going from 430 pounds to 191 pounds.
Cahill said he’s been speaking to groups after his time on the television show. While it’s always great to get applause, he says his greatest joy is walking up to the stage.
“That’s when I get overwhelmed,” Cahill told the senators and a chamber filled with home schooled children and their families who spent the day at the Capitol.
“For 17 years that was a painful thing to do,” Cahill said. “I avoided getting up as much as possible — it hurt.”
Cahill, who is planning to run his second marathon, said when he gave up on his dreams of being a musician, his disappointment turned into pounds.
“People always say, ‘How did you get that way?’” Cahill said. “Very slowly. I gave up on my dreams and unachieved goals. ”
Cahill said his time on the television program reminded him to challenge himself to achieve his goals.
“I was a lost cause, a sinking ship, until I learned to love myself again and make my health a priority,” Cahill said.
Oklahoma is the 49th most unhealthy state in the country and over 31 percent of Oklahomans are obese, according to the United Health Foundation.
Click here to hear Cahill’s full speech in the Senate.