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Never Knew They Were Running Marathons

jesus juarez,   Martin Middle School
Physical Activity Participation
Never Knew They Were Running Marathons
At the onset of the school year, we brought up the idea of running marathons to our students. The shock on their faces seemed real and they couldn't believe we were suggesting such an arduous task so early in the year. What we didn't tell them was that they would actually be doing this over the entire year and would start as a slow process. Initially, the students would only run or walk 4 laps around our homemade track. After a month, they began to steadily increase their mileage. Slowly but surely the students began to realize that the marathon could actually be achieved over time. What once started as only a mile or two per week has morphed into running/jogging/walking multiple miles per day in our program. Once the students realized that their goals had been met they felt a great deal of accomplishment, which was priceless.

How did you accomplish your goals?

Increasing the time that the students would run was paramount and we started slowly and progressed to a higher number throughout the months.

What challenges did you face and how did you overcome them?

The challenge stemmed from students thinking they would be unable to complete the marathon distance, but once it was explained, they believed and actually went beyond their previously thought limits.

What improvements have you seen at your school?

Students have much more energy and seem to be in better moods overall.