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YMCA Kids Marathon

<span style="font-family: Arial;"><font face="Arial"><font size="1">Marathon runners often train for months in order to complete the rigorous task, but it doesn't have to be that way.</span><font size="1"> </font><p><font size="1">The Bay View YMCA figured out a way to challenge your family to run that distance, one mile at a time.</font></p></font></font>

Kids may not know why they're exercising, but they do know that jumping, skipping and running is fun a little bit at a time.

The Bay View YMCA is taking advantage of that next month with its Kids Marathon.

Families sign-up to jump, skip or run the whole distance at their own pace.

Kim Smith is a Program Coordinator. "It's hard enough for an adult to do 26.2 miles in one shot and its really unrealistic for their growing bodies to do it all in one shot. But at the same time, by spacing it out over 5 weeks we are giving them a big goal to accomplish as they start their summer vacations, keeping them healthy and active along the way."

The marathon is for kids ages 5-12 and their families.

It begins on June 7, and ends on July 12.

Families cover the marathon distance however they choose, whenever they choose.

Once a week they reconvene at the YMCA for some tips at a training clinic

Smith described what they learn. "How to stay safe while they're running, where it's safe to run, what to wear, we're also giving them some nutritional topics. How to stay hydrated, what's a healthy snack, what's not a healthy snack."

The program started in 2005 with just 12 kids.

Last year, over 250 kids and 150 adults took part.

Smith says any family can sign up, whether they're a member of the Y or not.

"I'm obviously not gonna let my daughter run 26.2 miles on her own, so it really does get the whole family involved. The older brothers and sisters tag along, the little ones tag along, Mom and Dad. We've even had stories where the whole neighborhood gets together and has a walking group or a running group after dinner, so it gets everyone together and gets you up and moving".

To find out more about the YMCA's Kids Marathon, click here.

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