Space Coast Countdown to Fitness Promotes Healthy Living
By Space Coast Daily // November 17, 2019
Organized by the Running Zone Foundation
The annual Space Coast Countdown to Fitness program is set to get the Brevard county’s elementary and middle school children active.
The fitness program will see the children cover a distance of 26.2 miles over the course of 10 weeks from February 22 to May 2. The participating children will receive prizes for each five miles they complete.
They will also all run the final mile of the marathon together at the end of which they will receive a finisher medal.
Organized by the Running Zone Foundation, the challenge aims to get kids into the habit of regular exercise.
Over the period of the program, the children will be encouraged by their commander (or leading teacher, parent or volunteer who has gone through the registration process) to run at school, sports practice, or near their home, keeping track of the distance they have completed.
It is also worth investing in a fitness tracker watch to motivate your child to keep track of their daily progress.
“We want kids to be inspired to run but most importantly, we want them to be healthy, smart, and develop a lifelong habit of taking care of themselves,” said Don and Denise Piercy, the founders of the Running Zone.
Teams of under 15 students will all receive Space Coast Countdown to Fitness T-shirts and a banner to be hung at the participating school.
The school with the highest percentage of students involved in the program will also receive a cash prize. Registration for the Countdown to Fitness program is open from December 17 to February 1. Final Mile registration runs from April 1 to April 28.
The Final Mile run will be held on May 2, 2020, at the Viera High School. Parents are welcome to run the Final Mile with their children.
Obesity rates in the United States have risen significantly over the past 20 years and are continuing to increase. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention obesity in children is a huge problem in the country.
Approximately 18 percent of children and adolescents between the ages of 2 and 19 (or around 13.7 million) children in the United States are obese.
The statistics are even more disturbing for Brevard, where 40.3 percent of children have been classified as overweight.
Physical activity has a huge number of benefits for children. Kids who spend long amounts of time in front of the television or computer screen run a higher risk of being obese, and developing heart disease, as well as high cholesterol and blood pressure.
According to the American Heart Association, children above the age of two should be involved in at least an hour of physical activity each day to optimize their physical and mental well-being.