Ryan Reynolds, Teri Hatcher and Drew Carey: Celebrity marathon runners to beat
Karla Bruning is the host of On The Run, a TV and web show...
ORLANDO, January 12, 2013 — Ryan Reynolds, Teri Hatcher, Drew Carey are just like us, only they have cooler jobs. That pay more. That have them drinking expensive champaign at exclusive parties.
Since celebrities are merely people who happen to be famous, it makes sense that some of them would happen to be runners, even marathoners and triathletes among them. Oprah Winfrey, Ryan Reynolds, Teri Hatcher, Drew Carey. The list of famous folks who have tackled 26.2 or 13.1 miles or swim, bike, runs is plentiful and includes actors, singers, models, politicians, chefs, writers, and other notable folk.
But it seems that regular runners can’t get enough of celebrity runners. Spotting a celebrity on the street or at a restaurant is enough to thrill many fans for a lifetime. But running with them? It takes celeb spotting to a whole new level.
And races increasingly advertise the celebrities they have on their roster to entice and inspire runners.
Take the upcoming 20th Anniversary Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend presented by Cigna, which includes a half-marathon on Saturday, January 12 and marathon on Sunday, January 13 near Orlando, Florida.
The race’s organizer, runDisney, brought comedian and The Price Is Right host Drew Carey and singer and Dancing With The Stars vet Joey Fatone out to greet fans at the Walt Disney World Marathon Meet Up event for about 100 runDisney Twitter followers.
Carey was scheduled to run this weekend but pulled out Wednesday due to knee problems. Fatone will be running the Goofy Race and a Half Challenge, which includes running a half-marathon on Saturday and marathon on Sunday. ESPN host Colin Cowherd will also be running this weekend.
The Walt Disney World Marathon isn’t the only race to tout its celebrity entrants. The ING New York City Marathon regularly publicizes their Who’s Who of Hollywood, usually to promote charity partners or race sponsors.
And the Marine Corps Marathon even maintains a page dedicated to all of their famous finishers including Al Gore and Oprah.
For race directors and celebrity runners, it’s a symbiotic relationship. Race organizers get a famous face to help promote their event, and celebrities get another platform to promote their charity, sponsor, brand or message.
Case in point: Actor Sean Astin, a Disney race veteran, promotes his Run3rd Twitter campaign, which encourages people to dedicate their runs to a loved one, cause or idea, through his running endeavors. Model Christy Turlington Burns was slated to run the canceled 2012 ING New York City Marathon on behalf of her charity, Every Mother Counts, which aims to reduce maternal mortality worldwide. Actress Valerie Bertinelli ran the Boston Marathon for the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The list goes on.
Other celebrities use their fame to promote healthy living, like Drew Carey who lost 92 pounds over the course of one year back in 2010 through diet and exercise. He became a runner in the process.
“I plan on doing it the rest of my life. I didn’t start running to say, ‘Oh I want to run amarathon or a half-marathon,’ and check it off my list and then eat pizza the rest of my life. I started so that I can incorporate it into a healthy lifestyle,” Carey said at the Walt Disney World Marathon Meet Up. “My goal was to be fit and healthy enough to live to see my kid graduate high school, college. ‘Cause the way I was going it was never going to happen. I figured I’d be dead in 10 years. Honestly, I was really unhealthy.”
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