PHCS Kids Marathon Offers Fun, Fitness

Jan 29, 2015

Children in grades K through 8 are invited to join the fun in the 7th annual Princeton HealthCare System (PHCS) Kids Marathon. Participants will begin marathon-related activities on their own in April and come together on June 27 for a 1.2-mile fun run.

The marathon, hosted by PHCS Community Education & Outreach and Princeton Fitness & Wellness Center, offers a fun, interactive way for children to incorporate physical activity in their daily lives.

Parental permission is required. To sign up, visit The cost is $25, and proceeds benefit PHCS programs that work to promote wellness and prevent obesity and chronic disease in children.

Participants will strive to walk, run or roll a total of 25 miles—an average of 2.5 miles per week—over a 10-week period from April to June. Click here to download a log sheet to track your progress. Any physical activity can count toward the total, including sports, gym class, walking to school or even household chores.

Along the way, kids will earn incentives for completed milestones at 5, 10, 13.1, 20 and 25 miles.

On June 27, the mini-marathoners will finish the final 1.2 miles on the grounds of Educational Testing Service (ETS), 660 Rosedale Road, Princeton. The June 27 event will include activities for the whole family, including music, face painting, crafts, vendors and refreshments.

More than 2,500 children have participated in the Kids Marathon since it was initiated by PHCS in 2009 as a way to raise awareness of the dangers of childhood obesity and promote physical activity for all children.

Obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents over the past 30 years, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk of bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological issues. They also tend to be obese as adults and, therefore, are more at risk for adult health problems such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, osteoarthritis and several types of cancer.

According to the CDC, regular physical activity helps children and adolescents to improve strength and endurance, build healthy bones and muscles, reduce anxiety and stress, increase self-esteem, control their weight and improve blood pressure and cholesterol levels. It may also help improve academic performance, research shows.

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