Updated: Jul 13, 2018
On the first day of Fit Girls, we discussed the importance of safety and feeling secure in our space. We talked about physical safety while running, but we also talked about feeling safe emotionally. We talked about being kind to one another and supporting and sharing compassion with one another while at Fit Girls. I always tell the girls, “Kindness goes a long way.” We actually communicate a happy thought (happy thoughts are distributed every session) that reads “kindness is contagious, pass it on”. I really think that we try to model kindness in a way that encourages girls to be supportive of one another while running. Many times, I will say to the girls, “find a new friend and run with that person” or while playing the compliment game I will say,” write something nice that inspires you about that person on their page”. I watched these girls this fall and spring cheer each other on as we played relay games. It did not matter who win a group, the support was there for each member. In Fit Girls, modeling kindness helps the girls achieve a greater self-confidence. Our volunteers mentor and inspire these girls to be kind. As part of this, we also talked about self- caring; taking care of ourselves; and modeling kindness not only to others, but also yourself. It goes along with our purpose of promoting a healthy and active lifestyle for young girls including regular exercise for the body, the mind and the heart. Our girls hear about making healthy choices which shows how we care about our bodies, minds and hearts. Seeing the girls cheer on Fit Girl "friends and acquaintances" at the recent 5K made me realize, we must be doing something right. These girls shared their enthusiasm and excitement with each other. The girls who finished the run sooner, met the girls still running near the finish line and shared high fives. It was such a pleasure to watch. These girls really know that kindness matters.