Recently, our Houston Podiatry practice had the honor of co-sponsoring the School Marathon at Robert M Beren Academy. To complete their marathon, each day, the students ran one mile (under the supervision of a teacher) until they had logged the complete 26.2!
This project was near and dear to my heart for a few different reasons. First off, this is the school my children go to (and my wife was the faculty superviser of the program!)
But secondly, and more importantly, I love the idea of giving kids an early passion for running. As someone who came to this sport later in life (I completed my first half-marathon just a few years ago) I've come to love the feeling of running a race--not to mention the health benefits that come with training! I'm sure I could have started my journey to wellness much sooner if I'd gotten an earlier start on running.
I know that some people are concerned about years and years of running, fearing that kids bodies' may be hurt by the impact of the sport, but here's the great thing: when you start running in an early training program like a school marathon, you train in short bursts (something I recommend for beginners of all ages) and under the watchful eye of an experienced coach. Not too many runners can begin their relationship with the sport while being carefully monitored for missteps or training mistakes that could lead to pain or injury!
For all these reasons (and a bunch more I'm sure I'm forgetting) I congratulate the students at RMBA on achieving their running goals, and I urge you to consider finding a similar program for your student athlete!