New York Road Runners Teams Up with Partnership for a Healthier America to Encourage the Next Generation of Runners

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New York Road Runners will dedicate $7 million over the next five years towards expanding its youth-focused Mighty Milers program.

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Mighty Milers Celebrate National Running Day 2013

Our vision is to make running a part of every child’s school day.

The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), which works with the private sector and PHA Honorary Chair First Lady Michelle Obama to solve the nation’s childhood obesity crisis, and New York Road Runners (NYRR) came together today to announce a multiyear commitment to increase access to physical activity opportunities for kids across the nation. Over the next five years, NYRR will invest $7 million in its Mighty Milers program and distribute its coaching and fitness resources for free, teaching and inspiring more than 500,000 kids to run. The new investment will continue NYRR’s focus on reaching students in underserved neighborhoods.

“Currently, only about half of children in the United States receive the recommended 60 minutes of physical activity a day,” said PHA CEO Lawrence A. Soler. “Ending the physical inactivity crisis is an important part of reversing the childhood obesity epidemic. With commitments like the one New York Road Runners has made today, we move one step closer in the fight to end childhood obesity.”

Mighty Milers, NYRR’s national, school- and community-based K-8 running program, motivates children of all fitness levels to run or walk regularly and reach their personal distance goals. Over the next five years, through an investment of $7 million dollars, NYRR will expand the number of participating schools by 20 percent and increase the number of student participants by at least 25 percent. In addition, NYRR will disseminate its free digital teaching resource, Running Start, to at least 2,500 schools, arming them with the tools necessary to keep their students active.

“Our vision is to make running a part of every child’s school day,” said Mary Wittenberg, President and CEO of New York Road Runners. “For more than a decade we’ve brought the health and fitness benefits of running to schools in NYC and across the country. We’re excited to join with PHA to grow Mighty Milers and support more teachers and students through our ground-breaking educational resources and professional development. ”

About the Partnership for a Healthier America
The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) is devoted to working with the private sector to ensure the health of our nation’s youth by solving the childhood obesity crisis. In 2010, PHA was created in conjunction with – but independent from – First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! effort. PHA is a nonpartisan nonprofit organization that is led by some of the nation’s most respected health and childhood obesity experts. PHA brings together public, private and nonprofit leaders to broker meaningful commitments and develop strategies to end childhood obesity. Most important, PHA ensures that commitments made are commitments kept by working with unbiased third parties to monitor and publicly report on the progress our partners are making. For more information about PHA, please visit and follow PHA on Twitter @PHAnews.

About NYRR    
New York Road Runners was founded in 1958 when a small group of passionate runners vowed to bring running to the people. Over the past 55 years, NYRR has grown from a local running club to the world’s premier community running organization. NYRR’s mission is to empower everyone, of all ages and abilities—beginners and competitive athletes, the young and the elderly, adult professionals and underserved schoolchildren—to improve their health and well-being through the power of running and fitness.

NYRR’s races, community events, instruction and training resources, and youth programs give hundreds of thousands of people each year the motivation, know-how, and opportunity to start running and keep running for life. NYRR’s premier event, the famed ING New York City Marathon, attracts the world’s top pro runners and committed amateurs alike while also raising millions of dollars annually for charity and driving economic impact for the City. But NYRR is equally committed to the runners of tomorrow, passionately providing youth fitness programs that educate and inspire more than 100,000 kids in underserved communities in New York City, all 50 states, and around the world.

Headquartered in New York City, NYRR implements a unique nonprofit model that teams contributed and earned income to make all its efforts possible. To learn more, please visit

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Laura Paulus

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