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22 SCHOOLS across Sunderland joined forces at Silksworth Sports Complex on Thursday 11 October all in the name of fun, thanks to the running initiative GO Run For Fun.

Over 1,400 children between the ages of 5 and 11 years old took part in the event and were joined by British marathon champion Aly Dixon, who spurred on the children ahead of their 2km run.

Aly said: “I love to see kids being active and enjoying themselves. I believe it’s really important to show them that the two do go hand in hand and that being fit and active isn’t all about winning, it’s about enjoying yourself with friends.

“My advice to children about staying active would be to try a variety of sports and activities, and don’t focus too much on one sport. Being active and fit doesn’t have to be organised sport; it can be walking the dog, playing tag in the street or schoolyard. Remember you don’t have to be the best and win everything; you just have to have fun and try your best.”

Aly spoke about when her interest in running started: “Because my dad was a marathon runner, I was brought up surrounded by running. I would run for fun as he raced but my real interest didn’t start until I got to secondary school and I joined the local club aged 11. I was nowhere near the best but I loved to run and I loved the freedom it gave me. I made some great friends who are still my friends today.

“Running has had a huge impact on my life, and I’ve been lucky enough to turn what started as a hobby into my career. I’ve got to travel the world doing what I love, seeing some amazing places and meeting some amazing people. Without running I wouldn’t be the person I am now. It has helped to improve my self-esteem, my confidence and made me a stronger person. I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.”

GO Run For Fun has been working with primary schools and councils across the UK to help encourage children to get active and become more aware of the fun involved in sport and activity.

The programme is supported by INEOS, a multinational company headquartered in London, with health and fitness at the heart of its ethos.

INEOS Chairman and CEO, Jim Ratcliffe, is deeply passionate about running. He said: “It has never been more important to support young people in leading healthier, more active lives.

“GO Run for Fun and The Daily Mile have been making a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of hundreds of thousands of children in the UK and beyond for the last four years. We are very proud to support these two initiatives and everyone who runs in them.”

To find out more about GO Run For Fun, visit or stay up to date on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.



The GO Run For Fun campaign is delivered by the GO Run For Fun Foundation in partnership with Nova International, organisers of the Great Run series. Find out more about Great Runs here.


Tegan Denwood / Rebecca Connolly at O Communications

Tel: 0191 232 5690

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