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Fit Mom Sets a Healthy Example for her Biggest (and Littlest) Fans

Running the Tinkerbell Half Marathon

As her feet pounded the pavement, step after step, mile after mile, Joy Ferrante wasn't worried about finishing the Tinker Bell Half Marathon. She knew she had trained well but more importantly, she knew that people were counting on her – particularly two small people, aged 6 and 9, who were waiting for her with home-made signs and sticky, hot hugs at the finish line.

In the months preceding the race, Bryce and Sierra had watched their mom lace up her sneakers and head out for her training runs day after day. On race day, as they watched costumed runners snake their way through Disneyland Park from the sidelines, they saw their mom's fierce determination as she pounded the pavement toward her hard-earned goal: the finish line.

Joy ferrante.jpgWatching Joy train for the race inspired her family to join her in the pursuit of a healthier lifestyle. "My daughter told me that she was proud of me for doing this," said Joy. Over the fourth of July weekend, her family participated in a joint walk/run in Calabasas, California where Joy ran the 4-mile race and then completed the 2-mile walk with her family.

As a mom, Joy knows that protecting children's health is critically important. "When kids don't treat their bodies well, their brains can't work and they are more likely to get sick," she said.

It was this knowledge that inspired Joy to train for and complete the Tinker Bell Half Marathon, her first race with the Alliance for a Healthier Generation's Team Healthier Generation. Team Healthier Generation empowers individuals of all fitness levels to compete in an event of their choosing or select from a menu of world-renowned, sold-out fitness events, while raising money to support the Alliance's mission to reduce the prevalence of childhood obesity nationwide.

Joy isn't an elite runner. And a decade had passed since she ran her last half marathon, but she was looking for a new challenge, and the idea of pushing her physical limits while also supporting a cause that was close to her heart seemed almost too good to be true. "There were moments [during the race] where I was almost brought to tears because I was so happy. It's such a positive experience," she said

Joy's pace is not slowing down anytime soon: She and her family enjoy taking their dog for long walks, hiking together on the weekend, and Joy and her husband will run a 10K race in Santa Monica in August.

Join Joy on Team Healthier Generation


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