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Teacher: Katie Mulloy who teaches at Ronald Reagan Elementary School in New Berlin, WI. Katie Mulloy can be contacted at

Name of Best Practice: Marathon Fitness Challenge

Rationale/Purpose of Event: To encourage physical activity outside of the school day for students and their families. This helps to "bridge the gap" for physical education and home activity and try to merge the two concepts together.

Suggested Grade Level: PRE-K, K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12

Materials Needed: Marathon Fitness Challenge mile tracking sheet, Marathon Fitness Challenge Certificate

Marathon Fitness Challenge

The Marathon Fitness Challenge is a fitness challenge to help students increase their physical activity outside of the school day through walking and/or running. Students are challenged to walk/run outside or on a treadmill and track their mileage for a predetermined amount of time (I suggest about 6 weeks). The goal is to walk/run a marathon - 26.2 miles in that duration of time. Students are able to turn in their mileage forms anytime during that 6 weeks up until the last day.

I encourage families to participate together and provide different resources for them to use to help them along the way. For example, I provide a website/app that can track mileage, a website that offers some local walking/running trails, and a website that offers different local activities for adults/children which is mostly centered around physical activity and organized runs/walks (5K, 10K, etc).

I offer a prize to those that complete the challenge as well as a Completion Certificate for added incentive to participate.

Marathon Fitness Challenge Write Up and Tracking Sheet

Bulletin Board


Change the mileage - Half Marathon, Ultra Marathon, etc. Make it a triathlon to encourage swimming and biking if students show interest in that. Make it your own and listen to the feedback from your students.

Teaching Suggestions/Tips:

I explain this during my class to my students for an introduction. I also email the classroom teachers, administration, and families to fill them in on the challenge details so that everyone is aware of how to participate if they so choose. I post the challenge sheet on my school webpage and attach it to the emails. I create a bulletin board (see picture) on the outside of my gym doors to advertise what is happening as well.

Adaptations for Students with Disabilities:

The challenge is fairly easy to differentiate for students that have disabilities. The mileage can be adapted to fit individual needs as well as students in wheelchairs.

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Posted on PEC: 5/9/2016 and has received 6 votes.

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Previous Comments:

George Llewellyn

I will be trying this idea out. Thanks for the idea Katie. I may try having a picture of a route where the pupils can move themselves along the further they get. Do you make it optional or do you do it with classes?

billy ray

I like the idea, sounds like a good time

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