Over 30 percent of children ages six to 11 are overweight, 15 percent are obese, and three out of five children ages nine to 13 don't participate in sports or other coached physical activities outside of school. These overweight and unfit children are more likely to remain unhealthy in adulthood and have an increased risk for developing life-threatening medical conditions such as Type II diabetes and heart disease.
In 2007, AMAA and the ARA joined forces to combat the growing epidemic of overweight youth in the United States. Children as young as kindergartners and up through middle school are the target age groups as they are the most vulnerable to non-healthy lifestyle choices.
A grassroots campaign was initiated in local communities and schools to encourage more kids to run. The mile distance was chosen as the good starting or kickstarter point. Training plans and an Operations Guide for segmented age groups or classes in elementary and middle school were developed and distributed. We wanted to keep it simple to execute. AMAA and ARA tied everything into a culminating mile event, the NATIONAL RUN A MILE DAYS.
The NATIONAL RUN A MILE DAYS YOUTH FUND was set up to raise money to provide training plans, posters, flyers, and an Operation Guide for teachers and schools. Select schools and communities receive “MILER” t-shirts. With each mile, AMAA and ARA are striving to "Get Kids Fit, One Step at a Time." To learn more go to www.runamile.org.
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American Running Association
4405 East-West Highway
Suite 405, Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: 800-776-2732 x 13 or x 12