Runners have an opportunity to put an end to obesity. Maybe you are thinking, “Yes, I know. I run so I won’t be fat.” There is more to be responsible for than our own health when we lace up our shoes (or slip into our minimal shoes). We have a chance to be an example for the childhood obesity epidemic sweeping our nation.
Because running is a solo sport, it can be difficult to realize how we can impact someone else’s fitness level. Running isn’t a team effort, therefore the wins and losses are often credited to how much personal motivation has been put into training. What we should come to understand is that by setting examples, including others, or becoming mentors, the running community has the power to inspire the next generation to be aware of the importance of a healthy lifestyle.
You don’t have to turn your training runs into running camp to make a difference. Just remember that being a part of a running community means that you have access to people that understand your passion to move and thrive toward living a healthy lifestyle. Maybe on race days the kids can ride their bikes through the route after the runners are finished. Many races have even added a fun run just for kids, which is great! Maybe the kids that do the fun runs can swap numbers and form a fitness club or pair up with another run buddy.
There are lots of ideas that can be generated from one sole runner. Be as bold about sharing those ideas as you are every time you line up to run a race. There’s a generation of smart, tech-savvy kids on the horizon – let’s make sure they know how to move more than a mouse. ~trvw