November 7, 2017

Athletes Conquer Marathons for Children’s Health

It’s been an exciting few weeks for Team Healthier Generation, with more than 20 athletes participating in the Marine Corps Marathon, Marine Corps 10K and the TCS NYC Marathon.

To kick off our fall season, the team came together in Washington D.C. and Arlington, VA in late October. Led by Celebrity Team Captain, Anja Garcia, 14 of our team members showed support for those in the line of duty, while leading the way for children’s health throughout Marine Corps Marathon(MCM) weekend.

As Team Healthier Generation’s Official Celebrity Fitness Coach, Anja Garcia visited a local elementary school, where students shared what they have learned through the support of the Healthy Schools Program. From a school garden tour to seeing a kindergarten class share their favorite classroom physical activity break, Anja and Alliance representatives experienced the impact of our mission first-hand. The highlight of this school visit was inviting approximately 40 students to take part in a kid’s fitness workshop, led by Anja Garcia.

Throughout the MCM event weekend, our athletes had the opportunity to connect and prepare for race day through a partnership with Arlington’s Coaching-Training and Injury Center (ArCTIC). The team had runners crossing the finish line of their first ever 10K and marathoners cruising to their fifth finish — along with a few PR’s! We congratulate all who participated and supported this team of healthy role models.

Next up, 8 team members came together in New York City during the first weekend of November to conquer the world-famous 26.2 miles of the TCS New York City Marathon.

With runners venturing to the “Big Apple” from Connecticut, Virginia, Kentucky, New Jersey, New York and Italy, the team brought a powerful energy and voice to the importance of creating healthier environments for kids. Our well-experienced marathoners offered encouragement and insight to team members who were getting ready for their first ever marathon distance race.

Despite the overcast skies on marathon Sunday, the energy was electric and the inspiration palpable as each runner inched closer to crossing the finish line and achieving their goals.

For Erin, joining Team Healthier Generation for the New York City Marathon elevated her journey to the finish line beyond her usual race experience.

After having some time to let her achievement sink in, Erin said, "I am able to reflect on what an amazing day yesterday was for me. Yes, my body is physically sore, but my heart is so happy. Running the NYC marathon for charity brought on a whole new meaning to 26.2 miles."

After witnessing the resilience of the New York City community, along with history being made when Shalane Flanagan achieved a first place, gold medal finish — the first American female to do so in 40 years — Team Healthier Generation Manager, Cassie, said her “Inspiration bucket was overflowing.”

Marathon runner, Erin, agreed when she shared, "If there is ever a doubt in humanity, attend a marathon. The uplifting feeling you get from the human to human support is so simple and pure.

The collective efforts of these athletes have raised nearly $25,000 to support the Alliance for a Healthier Generation. These funds will help provide kids with equal access to the resources they need to develop healthy, lifelong habits. The impact will be seen in making sure elementary schools have at least 20 minutes of recess a day, providing fruits and vegetables in school cafeterias, supporting healthy out-of-school time and much more, all across the country.

Please join us in congratulating these athletes and their supporters for serving as healthy role models, pursuing and conquering athletic challenges and inspiring their communities along the way.

We are honored to have such passionate change-makers represent Team Healthier Generation and join us in paving the way for a healthier generation.