ABU DHABI - Four-time American track legend Michael Johnson has urged all UAE residents to participate in next month’s ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon, with the eight-time world champion and four-time Olympic gold medallist hoping the December 17 event will attract a new record of 20,000 competitors.
Johnson, known for his support of a healthy lifestyle and promoting the benefits of exercise for physical and mental health, stressed the importance of participating in what promises to be a wonderful regional event with international participation. Regardless of physical fitness, the opportunity to exercise and enjoy a special moment among thousands of likeminded people should not be missed, he said.
“Be a part of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon this year,” Johnson said. “The wonderful thing about it is that while it constitutes a challenge against others, it also represents a challenge with yourself. So do not miss the opportunity to participate in this special race from its beginning to its end.
"I realize that establishing a sporty lifestyle with regular exercises on a daily basis is difficult, but training with people makes things easier and makes the motivation mutual between the members of the group.”
Johnson last month participated in the Congress of the International Association of Physical Activity and Health in Abu Dhabi. It was the first conference of its kind in the region devoted to the issues of physical and mental health, as well as societal well-being for residents of the UAE capital.
The legendary runner, who won Olympic gold at Barcelona ‘92, Atlanta ‘96, and Sydney 2000, participated in the "One Billion Step Challenge", which was held in cooperation between the Ministry of Health and Prevention, the Department of Community Development, the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, and the fitness app Step.
The organizing committee expects a record number of participants this year and recently unveiled its new-look 42.2 km track, which starts at the ADNOC Headquarters before passing through a number of well-known landmarks across the city.