Free and fun challenge inspires kids to get outside and running

There’s no doubt that it’s been a long, tough year for everyone. And while there may be light at the end of the tunnel, right now, kids in many parts of Canada are still unable to participate in the team sports or physical activities that they love.

What we could all use now is a little inspiration. And this month, we’ve got it, thanks to a Canadian track star and a 14-year-old Montrealer.

A recent CP24 article reported that Canada’s Andre De Grasse and teen Jesse Briscoe have started up an initiative that invites and encourages Canadian kids coast-to-coast to join the RACE WITH ME! Virtual Challenge.

Briscoe said he was tired of sitting at home playing video games after his team sports were cancelled due to the pandemic, so he and his dad reached out to De Grasse. Luckily, De Grasse was up for the task of inspiring kids to get active and to hopefully find joy in getting outside and moving again. As a result, the virtual racing challenge was brought to life. 

Here’s how to participate in the RACE WITH ME! Virtual Challenge:

  • From May 1 to June 25, go to your local 400m track and run one lap as fast as you can. 
  • Then go back weekly to improve your time. It’s that simple! 
  • Siblings and/or parents can record times and capture photos and videos to be shared online.

Registration is free, although any donations will go to youth mental health initiatives such as Kids Help Phone.

The beauty in this challenge is that running is something we can all safely do, by ourselves or together as a family. If you’ve got a pair of running shoes and some time to get out there, you can take part. 

But if running isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other ways to get active outside during the pandemic, while also gearing up for the excitement of the Olympic games. 

For more inspiration, check out #RaceWithMeCanada on Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok.


Read more about kids and running:

The benefits of running a mile a day

Running: How to teach kids to sprint correctly

Running with kids: The right way at the right time

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