Award-winning musician, actress and activist Alicia Keys announced on Tuesday that she is running the New York City Marathon.
Keys will be supporting the non-profit Keep a Child Alive, which she co-founded to help get life-saving HIV medication to African children and families who would not otherwise have access to it. In a blog post on Refinery 29, Keys wrote that Keep a Child Alive has helped grassroots programs in Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, Uganda and India.
“This is what inspires me when my body begins to tire,” she wrote. “My training is nothing compared to the challenging journey these families face every day.”
This will be Keys’ second marathon. She ran a marathon in 2007 in Greece, but this one will be special to her because she’s a native of New York City.
“I thought about all the times I rode a train through the boroughs or drove through the boroughs, and it occurred to me that I’ve never run through the five boroughs. So why not?” she wrote on Refinery 29.
Keys has been a major star in the music scene since her debut in 2001, recording such hits as “Fallin”, “If I Ain’t Got You”, “You Don’t Know My Name”, “No One” and “Girl on Fire.” And perhaps more relevant to her upcoming race, she collaborated with Jay-Z on “Empire State of Mind,” a hip-hop ode to New York City, and released an R&B sequel of her own, “Empire State of Mind (Part II) Broken Down.”
Keys, 34, is the mother of two young children with her husband, hip-hop artist Swizz Beatz. Her youngest was born in December, and Keys often trains pushing him in a stroller.
The New York City Marathon is on Nov. 1.