Battling Back Against Obesity: ING KiDS ROCK Nashville Returns

Apr 26, 2013 11:45 AM ET
  • More than 7,000 local kids participate in youth fitness program
  • Olympians Rod Dixon and Jim Ryun to encourage, inspire a love of running
  • One mile fun run takes place Sunday, April 28 at LP Field
Press Release

Nashville, Tenn., April 26, 2013 /3BL Media/ – A lifetime of healthy choices is ahead for more than 7,000 children, who will discover that fitness can be fun at the start line of ING KiDS ROCK Nashville. The non-timed, non-competitive event takes place this Sunday, April 28, at 2:00 p.m. at LP Field.

After weeks of training, children in grades K-7 will run the “final mile” in their race to become ING KiDS ROCK marathoners. Race day is the culmination of a school-based running program designed to tackle childhood obesity through prevention.

“As the official charity of ING KiDS ROCK, the ING Run For Something Better® program is helping get kids on the road to adopting healthier lifestyles through exercise and healthy eating,” said Rhonda Mims, president of the ING Foundation and senior vice president, ING U.S. Office of Corporate Responsibility. “This initiative is a fun way for kids to achieve a sense of accomplishment for their discipline leading up to the event, and we hope they continue running for years to come.”

The ING Run For Something Better training program guides children as they accumulate 25.2 miles (one mile shy of a marathon) at their own pace at home, during recess or at school. The mileage is tracked by a teacher, parent or facilitator. On race day, each child receives a medal and T-shirt as they cross the finish line of their final mile — completing their first “marathon.”

Coming out to cheer on the participants will be kids fitness advocate Rod Dixon, an Olympic medalist and marathon champion. Jim Ryun, Olympic medalist, world-record holder and former congressman will also cheer on the kids as they cross the finish line.

“A love of physical fitness starts early and sets kids up for success in life on many levels,” said Dixon. “Running is about Expression and Excitement— it should be about having fun, getting outside and learning that being healthy feels great. At ING KiDS ROCK, we encourage an environment where kids cross the finish line with smiles on their faces and everyone is a winner.”

ING KiDS ROCK is aligned with First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” initiative, as well as the President’s Challenge, which encourages youth fitness. Runners can earn President’s Challenge rewards for staying active and tracking their progress with other kids nationwide. ING KiDS ROCK Nashville takes place in conjunction with the St. Jude Country Music Marathon & 1/2 Marathon on Saturday, April 27. For more information, please visit

About ING U.S.
ING U.S. constitutes the U.S.-based retirement, investment and insurance businesses of Netherlands-based ING Group N.V. (NYSE: ING).  Through the ING U.S. family of companies, we serve the financial needs of approximately 13 million individual and institutional customers with a comprehensive array of products and services, including retirement plans, IRA rollovers and transfers, stable value, institutional investment management, mutual funds, alternative investments, life insurance, employee benefits, fixed and indexed annuities and financial planning.  Our dedicated workforce of more than 7,000 employees is focused on ING U.S.’s mission to make a secure financial future possible—one person, one family and one institution at a time.  For more information, visit

About ING Run For Something Better
ING KiDS ROCK is supported by ING Run For Something Better®, which helps fund school-based running programs across America. As part of ING U.S.’s commitment to education, the program advocates curbing childhood obesity through prevention — teaching kids early on about the benefits of physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle. Nationally, ING U.S. has committed more than $4 million to grants and school-based running programs through ING Run For Something Better. Since 2006, the 501(c)(3) organization has raised an additional $1.7 million through its “Orange Laces” campaign. For every $10 in donations, supporters receive a pair of orange shoelaces, symbolizing their “ties” to youth fitness. All net proceeds go to ING Run For Something Better fitness programs. For more information about ING Run For Something Better, go to

About ING KiDS ROCK Nashville
ING KiDS ROCK Nashville is a cumulative marathon program capped by a non-competitive, non-timed one-mile fun run for kids grades K-7. As participants in the ING KiDS ROCK program, young athletes become marathon finishers by completing 25.2 miles of a marathon at their own pace with guidance from parents or teachers. The event aims to motivate children to live a healthy lifestyle. They can learn early on that running can be fun and goals can be attainable. On Sunday, April 28, all participants will meet to run one mile together. Each participant will run or walk one mile, cross the finish line and receive a finisher’s medal and goodies to commemorate the accomplishment. More information is available at:

Press inquiries:
Phil Margolis                                  
ING U.S.                                                         
Office: 860-580-2676                
Cell: 860-805-7642

Kim Dettwiller
Competitor Group
Cell: 615-330-5656

Dan Cruz
Competitor Group, Inc.   
Cell: (619) 925-7671