It’s a new month…and it’s not just any ol’ month—it’s May! At Family Care Network, May is one of our favorite months. Why? Because every day in May (all 31 one of ‘em) we get to two celebrate two important National Awareness Campaigns—National Foster Care and National Physical Fitness and Sports Month. You may think that these two campaigns really have very little to do with each other. But guess what? You’d be wrong. Because this May, FCNI is hosting its 12th Annual Miracle Miles for Kids 10K Walk/Run. It’s the proverbial cherry on top of our awareness month cake—through this event, we get to honor the foster children, youth and families we serve by encouraging our community to come together to Run for a Reason on May 9th!
To start off this month of celebration, let’s turn our attention to National Physical fitness and Sports Month…and every one’s favorite subject: exercise. I know, I know, you’ve got stuff to do and none of it requires a sweat band. We get it. Saying no to exercise is easy, right? Cutting out all excuses to not exercise seems more difficult. The good news? Casting your excuses aside for a healthier choice can be done. Getting your body to move out the door is challenging for sure. But the payout, just like anything challenging, is worth it. Hands down, exercise is one of the most positive things you can do for your health and wellbeing.
Probably the most common excuse in this fast-paced busy world we live in is that we just don’t have the time. But here is actual truth: Exercise does not mean “run on a treadmill for four hours and be miserable.” Exercise is anything that elevates your heart rate and takes your body outside of its normal comfort zone. This can be achieved without taking up your whole day and it doesn’t have to include going into the often scary or intimidating place called “the gym.”
Plus, physical activity is good for everyone’s health, and people of all ages and body types can be physically active. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Agency, here are just a few of the benefits to physical activity:
For children and adolescents, physical activity can improve muscular fitness and bone and heart health. Youth need 60 minutes of physical activity each day where they live, learn and play. Additionally, regular activity provides cognitive health benefits as well. Put simply, active kids do better.
For adults, physical activity can lower risk for heart disease, type-two diabetes and some types of cancer.
For older adults, physical activity can lower the risk of falls and improve cognitive functioning (like learning and judgment skills).
So, now that you know the benefits of physical exercise, you’re ready to stop making excuses, right? Need more inspiration? We thought so.
In 2010, Hank Wethington ran his first Miracle Miles for Kids. Hank had never run a race before and was carrying more weight than he thought was healthy. Here’s how Hank described his first race experience:
“My first MM4K race was big. It was the first race I had ever done. I had begun training through the ‘Couch to 5K’ program and before I even finished it, I heard about MM4K and signed up. I asked a friend of mine to help me adjust my training so I could finish the 10K. We came up with a plan to run four minutes and walk one minute. I took it really slow, ran and talked with a friend I hadn’t seen in years. I crossed the finish line and then scarfed down that free burger!”
Since this first run, Hank has completed triathlons, half marathons and many other races in between. And this May 9th he’ll be running his 6th MM4K! Hank wants to get people of all ages and experiences to give MM4K try. He says, “Remember it’s not a race, it’s a fun run. Just do it. Get out there and run it. Six miles isn’t very long. Get your friends and families involved and have fun with it!”
Over the last 12 years, MM4K has grown into a healthy activity for family and friends to do together and has become a platform for individuals to achieve their fitness goals. People of all ages and fitness levels see this as not only a positive experience for them, but it is also a way for them to support the children, youth and families served by FCNI.
Hank continues his encouragement by stating, “First off, it’s a race but it’s what FCNI does that keeps me coming back. I grew up as a foster kid and supporting these kids brings me back year after year. I always block off the day for MM4K.”
We love our community and the many “Hanks” out there. We love that MM4K inspires you to not only support the work being done by FCNI but also give you a reason to lace up your running shoes and hit the beach. We invite the rest of you to kick start your new attitude about exercise by joining us at MM4K on May 9th. You can walk it. You can run. You can even sprint it!
We promise it will be fun. You’ll feel proud of what you have achieved, while also running to improve the lives of children, youth and families in need served by FCNI! It really is a win-win. So…Let’s get moving!
Your can register for Miracle Miles @ mm4k.com until 11:59PM May 5th, or join us at the beach on May 9th for walk-up registration.