We choose to focus on health because it is the key to living a successful, fulfilling life. And yet, the United States has been experiencing a health and obesity epidemic for decades. Currently, 7 out of 10 deaths in the U.S. are caused by chronic diseases which could have likely been avoided with relatively simple health and fitness habits.
Some reports have stated that this generation may actually have a lower life expectancy than their parents due to the health crisis. Additionally, we’re passing these poor habits on to our children. Since 1980, childhood obesity rates have tripled. Obesity is the direct cause, but it’s a result of a disregard for overall health practices.
What’s the difference between HEALTH and OBESITY?
Health is how you feel. How happy you are. How confident you are. How fulfilled you are. How hard your heart has to work.
Obesity is the measurement of fat on your body.
Obesity is the result of a lack of healthy practices. By focusing on health and promoting a positive body image, The Spark Foundation helps teach you, and elementary students, how to feel like you’re getting the most out of life. A decrease in obesity is simply a side effect.
Your heart rate is a measurement of how many times your heart is beating per minute. Checking your heart rate at rest, during exercise, or immediately after exercise can give you an idea of your overall health. Generally, the faster your heart rate slows after vigorous exercise, the healthier you are. Spark embraces the understanding that every body is different, which is why we use the heart rate as the standard of measurement in our running clubs. There are values to tracking obesity, but where health is concerned we like to set goals on a per body basis.
How does The Spark Foundation tackle the health crisis?
From the ground up.
Through community racing events that appeal to broad audiences and diverse levels of running experience. Through our outreach programming and collaborations with partner organizations. Through direct giving and grantmaking in support of health and fitness education in our schools.