Kids ran, walked, rolled through Charleston Youth Marathon

Callie Gillam was one of the kids that participated in the Charleston Youth Marathon (Rebecca Lamb/WCIV)

By Sonya

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- It's going to be an active weekend in the Lowcountry with the Charleston Marathon and Half Marathon on Saturday, but on Friday it was all about the younger runners.

Kids were racing down part of Burke's campus Friday afternoon as part of the Charleston Youth Marathon.

They ranged in age from 7 to 17 and had to run 25 miles prior to the event. They completed the last 1.2 miles Friday afternoon.

"I love the fact that we were setting healthy habits for kids," said Mike Campbell, volunteer director of the Charleston Youth Marathon. "I lost 150 pounds a couple years ago and through my journey I learned how bad childhood obesity is and wanted to find a simple way for kids to start setting healthy habits in life."

The race is for athletes of all levels-- some will run, some will walk, and some will push through in other ways, like Callie Gillam.

This is the third year that she has participated. It's something in which Callie Gillam's school, Pattison's Academy, has gotten involved and that's where she logged her 25 miles.

"Every morning at school they go on walks around the school," said Joey Gillam. "They'll use bikes or walkers or whatever is appropriate for the child, but they are all into keeping them moving and active."

For Callie Gillam's parents, it's important that she get out and get involved.

"That is what it's all about for special needs children, you know, getting them out and getting them involved," said Joey Gillam. "It's awesome that they can go out and participate just like well-bodied runners can and there will be other kids there so they are no different. They get to participate. It's a good time."

And today it wasn't about who finished first or who finished last, it was about getting active and being healthy.

Some of the kids registered individually while others got involved through their school. Howe Hall Arts Infused Magnet and Whitesides Elementary both had around 100 kids each taking part in the race.