President’s Challenge Program Partners with the Medtronic TC Kids Marathon to Promote the Presidential Active Lifestyle AwardThe Presidential Active Lifestyle Award (PALA) is part of the President’s Challenge Physical Activity and Fitness Awards Program, which is a program of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. The President’s Council, along with First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative launched the “Million PALA Challenge” on September 14, 2010, with the goal of encouraging one million Americans, both youth and adults, to achieve the PALA by September 2011.

Medtronic TC Kids Marathon provides a fun and effective way for teachers and parents to encourage kids to exercise by providing a free, flexible and practical online training program. It includes 12-week, 8-week and 4-week options, and is recommended for kids in grades K-8. Programs are geared to varied levels of fitness and can be customized for either the classroom environment or for running at home. Free incentives are available to encourage and motivate participants to meet their goals.

“The premise of the Medtronic TC Kids Marathon is the sooner we can instill healthy lifestyles in our kids, the better health they will have later in life,” explains Virginia Brophy Achman, Executive Director of Twin Cities In Motion. “A major contributor to a healthy lifestyle is getting regular exercise. We are very pleased to join our efforts with those of the President’s Council in support of First Lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! initiative.”

To earn the PALA, kids need to be active for 60 minutes a day, at least five days a week, for six out of eight weeks. “Participating in the 12-week or 8-week Medtronic TC Kids Marathon training program meets these requirements,” Brophy Achman explained.

At the end of a training cycle, a parent or teacher can enter the youth’s training information into the training log on the Medtronic TC Kids Marathon website. Those eligible for a PALA will receive a certificate of recognition signed by the Council co-chairs Drew Brees and Dominique Dawes or other awards of recognition from the President’s Challenge.

Last year over 3800 kids participated in the Medtronic TC Kids Marathon program and its three culminating events