New York Road Runners marked the sixth annual National Running Day on Wednesday (4) with celebratory activities across the five boroughs for New Yorkers of all ages and abilities, including group runs and walks, water stops in parks, giveaways, and their largest youth running event of the year – the Mighty Milers Fun Run.
Mighty Milers is an all-encompassing initiative introduced by the NYRR designed to get children of all abilities active and healthy, and yesterday's Fun Run was the flagship National Running Day event in New York.
Nearly 1300 Mighty Milers from New York City public schools throughout the five boroughs took over Icahn Stadium in a year-end celebration of running. Activities included 400m and 800m runs, in-field games, relay races, an obstacle course, and more. It was a day filled with sunshine, smiles, and many miles.
Orlando Cordero, one of the coordinators of the Mighty Milers project on Wednesday, explained how the event has had a palpable impact in encouraging children who shied away from sports to get involved and give it a go.
“It’s helped with a lot of kids who had asthma or were scared to run or be athletic at all because they feel like they can’t because of their asthma,” said Orlando. “The programme helped them realise ‘I can run and I’m not limited.’ It opened up more opportunities for them to be more active.”
“Today is a great day just to celebrate their efforts all year,” he added.
This sentiment was shared by fellow event coordinator Elaine Gill, who said: “The children enjoy running. They really want those medals and they are really enthusiastic about it.
“They put in their miles, they work really hard, and it really encourages them to run and continue to run.”
NYRR also hosted a number of other special activities throughout New York City, empowering kids, seniors, beginners, and longtime runners alike to embrace running as a positive social experience and spread the word about the power and benefits of running.
Further highlights included a Breakfast Run on the Upper East Side, morning senior walk in Harlem, and water stops and giveaways in Brooklyn and Astoria.
With help from organisers for worldrunning.com