"Did you know that working off a bottle of soda or fruit juice takes about 50 minutes of running?"
That question, unfortunately, had a significant influence among inner city teens in their decision not to choose a sugar-sweetened beverage, according to a recent study.
Of course, I’m happy when anyone, especially teenagers, turns down a soda or other sweetened drink. But I’m not happy that these test subjects had a negative view of running, which they considered a disincentive.
You can read about the study, Reduction in Purchases of Sugar-sweetened Beverages Among Low-income Black Adolescents After Exposure to Caloric Information, here.
Findings such as these suggest more of us should consider roles as running mentors to young runners, as I have written about before. The following two groups come to mind, but you don't necessarily need to be part of an organization to teach someone about the joys of running.
Girls on the Run is a mentoring program that encourages girls ages 8 to 13 to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles through running.
Running Rocks is Running USA’s resource center for youth running and fitness programs throughout the country where you can learn about joining or starting a mentoring program for runners.
As Bart Yasso of Runner’s World says in my book, “Accept the role of a mentor to a slower runner or a new runner or someone who doesn’t think he or she can walk around the block, let alone finish a 5K.”