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Kevin Hart Hopes His Love for Running Inspires Others: ‘I Think It Becomes Contagious’

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Kevin Hart Runners World 1
Art Streiber for Runner's World

Kevin Hart’s passion for running has led him to set up spontaneous 5K races around the country – but despite the fact that he runs 2 to 3 miles a day, he does not consider himself an athlete.

“I want to bridge the gap between what we consider a pro athlete and that person that doesn’t consider themselves to be an athlete at all,” the comedian, 37, tells Runner’s World in the magazine’s 50th Anniversary issue, on newsstands on October 18. “I’m not an athlete.”

Hart hopes the fact that he is not a professional athlete inspires others to get active by leading by example.

Kevin Hart Runners World 2
Art Streiber for Runner’s World
Art Streiber for Runner's World

“I’m not getting rewards or accolades for running, but if I show people that you can do this at the highest level for you, then I think it becomes contagious,” he says.

WATCH: Kevin Hart Fights Back Tears as he Celebrates Getting a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame

Hart says that being a “runner” is a matter of choice, and that anyone can do it.

“A lot of people think to themselves, ‘Well, I’m not a runner,'” he tells the magazine. “I just feel like there’s no such thing; you are what you say you are. So in my mind, I am a runner now. I love to run. Who stops me from giving myself that title? I embrace it and I wear it proudly.”

kevin hart runners world covers
Art Streiber for Runner’s World
Art Streiber for Runner’s World

Hart took his status as a runner to a new level by participating in the 199-mile Hood to Coast relay race in Oregon in August.

“I think this race is a life-changing experience, and who knows, it may set off that marathon bug,” he said after completing the race. “You never know with me. That’s the beauty of being Kevin Hart. I am the most random, spontaneous individual you will ever meet. I believe that within this life I should try and do as much as I can while I can.”