Just typing those words leaves me... amazed? in awe? inspired? ... exhausted?
Yes, even thought of running each day, let alone running a marathon each day, exhausts me, yet that's what Colin Harris of Take Me Outside (TMO) has been doing each day since January 2011. And he's taken on this extraordinary challenge with the purest of intentions: To encourage the youth of today to get outside.
As he runs his way across the country, Colin is making appearances in schools and communities to spread the organization's message and to introduce to students, teachers and parents alike the Take Me Outside Challenge. The challenge is simple: spend more time outside, be active and connect with nature. By encouraging outdoor active play, outdoor learning and active transportation, TMO is inspiring communities to cultivate healthier and happier youth. As TMO reports, "For the first time in our history, today's generation of Canadian children have a shorter predicted life span than their parents' generation. Rates of obesity and [Type 2] diabetes are reaching epidemic proportions. Children and youth are spending more sedentary time indoors in front of screens and they are losing their connection with the outdoors and their communities." A scary statistic, indeed.
To be honest, when I first sat down to write this blog post, the word 'skeptical' had crept its way into my list of adjectives describing my thoughts on the cross-country quest. I mean, you have to be one committed, dedicated and passionate individual to be able to muster the mental (and physical) toughness that would be necessary to pull yourself from bed each morning and embark on another marathon. But committed, dedicated and passionate are exactly what Colin Harris is.
Today, Colin crossed over the Alberta border and entered into the mountains of British Columbia. The last province on his cross-country journey.
Congratulations to Colin and TMO for your incredible accomplishments.
Even more, thank you for your commitment to outdoor and experiential education and to the difference you are making for today's youth.
To learn more about Take Me Outside: TMO Website www.takemeoutside.ca TMO Facebook Page www.facebook.com/takemeoutside TMO Twitter www.twitter.com/tmoproject
To support Colin and theTake Me Outside Project: Donate or Purchase a "Ask Your Teacher to Take You Outside" Tshirt