Princeton Health News

Registration for Kids Marathon Now Open

April 6, 2017
Kids Marathon—running start
Registration is now open for the Princeton HealthCare System (PHCS) Kids Marathon, an annual event designed to help young people incorporate physical activity into their daily lives.

Kids Marathoners earn miles by attending any of these free programs:

*Grow Your Own Veggie Garden
April 30, 1 p.m.
Perennial Favorites Garden Center, Hamilton

May 5, 4 p.m.
Blooms at Belle Mead Garden Center, Belle Mead

May 15, 4 p.m.
Corner Copia, Hightstown

*Eat & Run: Cooking and Exercise for Kids
May 3, 5:30 p.m.
Hamilton Area YMCA, John K. Rafferty Branch

Kids Zumba
May 8, 4:30 p.m.
West Windsor Library

*Kids Can Cook
May 30, 6 p.m.
Princeton Fitness & Wellness Center

* Programs presented thanks to the generous support of Scott and Tracy Sipprelle and Novo Nordisk

Preschoolers through 8th graders are invited to join the fun. The marathoners strive to run, walk or roll 25 miles over a 10-week period from April to early June.

Any physical activity can count toward the total: sports, gym class, walking to school or even household chores. Marathoners can also earn miles by attending kid-friendly healthy living programs offered by PHCS Community Education & Outreach. (See inset, left.)

Kids earn incentives for achieving milestones at 5, 10, 13.1, 20 and 25 miles.

On Sunday, June 11, participants will come together to finish the final 1.2 miles of their marathon during a fun run that will be held at Educational Testing Service, 660 Rosedale Road, Princeton.

Parents can get more information or register their children by visiting

The cost is $25, with proceeds supporting PHCS programs to promote wellness and prevent obesity and chronic disease among children.

If cost is an issue, parents may contact Debbie Millar, Director, PHCS Community Education & Outreach, at 609-897-8982 or to see if their children are eligible for a free scholarship.

The Kids Marathon is presented by PHCS Community Education & Outreach in partnership with Princeton Fitness & Wellness Center. Thousands of young people have participated in the Kids Marathon since it was initiated in 2009 to raise awareness of the dangers of childhood obesity and promote regular physical activity for all children.

The percentage of children with obesity in the United States has more than tripled since the 1970s, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Children and adolescents with obesity face greater risk of bone and joint problems, sleep apnea and social and psychological issues. They also tend to have obesity as adults, making them more susceptible to heart disease, type 2 diabetes and several types of cancer. Research shows that type 2 diabetes is a growing problem among teens as well.

Physical Activity and the Health of Young People

Benefits of Regular Physical Activity

  • Helps build and maintain healthy bones and muscles.
  • Helps reduce the risk of developing obesity and chronic diseases, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and colon cancer.
  • Reduces feelings of depression and anxiety and promotes psychological well-being.
  • May help improve students' academic performance, including:
    • Academic achievement and grades.
    • Academic behavior, such as time on task.
    • Factors that influence academic achievement, such as concentration and attentiveness in the classroom.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

About Princeton HealthCare System
Princeton HealthCare System is a comprehensive, integrated healthcare system that strives to anticipate and serve the lifelong needs of central New Jersey residents, including acute care hospital services through University Medical Center of Princeton, behavioral healthcare through Princeton House Behavioral Health, rehabilitation, home care, hospice care, ambulatory surgery, a primary and specialty medical practice, and fitness and wellness services. For more information, visit

Andy Williams, 609-252-8785

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