Due to an exciting new fitness program called the Morning Mile, the Alachua County school system is enjoying a major boom to students’ health and fitness habits this year. Morning Mile is a before-school walking/running program that allows students to start each day getting fit with friends, burn off some youthful energy in a fun and productive way and feel more prepared to sit and learn once the official school day has begun. Since the start of the 2010-11 school year, 11 public elementary schools have implemented this program – and six private schools have done the same. The result: students at these schools have run more than 40,000 miles! Our students look forward to participating in this program each day, and since it’s so simple to run, our staff looks forward to it as well.
With P.E. classes offered only once a week, the Morning Mile has allowed our students to pursue fitness at school every day of the week with zero added cost to our budget. We’re thrilled to have worked with the folks from Fitzness International and AvMed Health Plans, who were responsible for equipping our schools with Morning Mile Starter Kits and providing guidelines on how to operate the program. With childhood obesity a sad epidemic in our country, the Morning Mile has been a welcome contribution to our school system. With budgets tight, the Morning Mile is a brilliant way to ensure school children have the opportunity to earn healthy bodies, which in turn, enhances their ability to learn.
W. Daniel Boyd, Jr.