COLUMBUS, Ohio -- A local group of African American men are beating the odds of heart disease by running and staying active together.
“Black Men Run” is a national movement to encourage health and wellness among African America men.
The numbers don't lie.
Heart disease is the number one cause of death for African American men.
Statistics show 44.4% of black men, age 20 and older, have cardiovascular diseases.
With each stride, a local group is changing this alarming trend.
“There's a large community of runners out here," one runner said. "You never have to run by yourself. We could all be fit together.”
They meet every Saturday at 10 a.m. at Blacklick Woods Metro Park.
“We are a healthy brotherhood," Maclin Williams said. "We're more than a run club, we are an organization to promote health and wellness in the black community.”
They encourage other men to get active.
Williams brought the idea to Columbus in 2016 and said there are many benefits to getting in on this movement.
Running on a regular basis not only benefits you physically but also mentally.
“I have unleashed, unburdened my soul on them a lot of times for stuff I've gone through with work, family and they've been right there listening,” Williams said. “If you're gonna run with somebody for an hour, you gonna say something.”
Research shows that exercise can help boost your confidence, relieve stress and eliminate depression.
Their reasons for running may vary but they share a common goal: to encourage each other to get healthier and live longer.
The Columbus chapter of black men run is one of more than 50 across the country.
For more information on the initiative, click here.