The ING New York City Marathon is this Sunday, and runners across the city are gearing-up for the 26.2 mile run. This year there were 125,000 applicants to the race, which is offering a prize of $600,000. There are expected to be about two million spectators and a massive amount of media coverage.
Many celebrities are seizing upon the event to promote healthy lifestyles and other worth-while causes. There are over 190 charities involved in ING’s New York City Marathon charity program, “A Million Dollars a Mile,” which aims to earn (you guessed it) $26.2 million.
Today Show star Al Rocker is one of the notable participants, and will be running his first full-marathon. “Almost everybody’s bucket list includes running the ING New York City Marathon,” said Roker. “Just the thought of being able to start this race gives me goose bumps. As does the fear that the weather might turn ugly. On the other hand, if it does that might help improve my time as I try to outrun an angry mob of soggy and cold runners!”
Other celebrity runners:
- Andy Baldwin, of The Bachelor
- Sarah Darling, Broadway star
- Jared Fogle, Subway spokesperson
- Ethan Zohn, Survivor: Africa champion
- Ryan Sutter, of The Bachelorette
- Keir Dillon, professional snowboarder
- Veronica Webb, model/actress
- Bobby Flay, chef/television personality
- Tricia Byrnes, U.S. Olympian/professional snowboarder
- Kirk Acevedo, actor
- Robin Quivers, radio personality, The Howard Stern Show
Another inspiring runner to participate in the Marathon is Edison Pena, on of the Chilean miners who was rescued after being trapped underground for two months. He earned an invitation to watch the race after the story of how he ran in the tunnels to keep himself fit and his spirits up. “He demonstrated how running can play an important role in our physical and emotional well-being under any circumstances,” said New York Road Runners President Mary Wittenberg. “On behalf of the entire City of New York, we are honored to have him join us for this year’s race.”