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Prince Royce running New York City Marathon

Latin pop star Prince Royce will be pushing himself to the limit on Sunday (05Nov17) as he takes part in the New York City Marathon.

The singer reveals he would never have considered himself a runner before his cousin challenged him to take it up as a form of exercise over six months ago, and after falling in love with pounding the streets, he decided to sign up for the 26-mile (42-kilometer) race in his hometown.

"He (cousin) talked me into it," Royce told People Chica of how he got into his new pastime. "One day he was going for a run and he challenged me. I woke up one morning, bought sneakers, ran in Central Park and that was it."

Pounding the pavement on a regular basis has helped the 28-year-old lose 12 pounds (5.44 kilograms) to date, but juggling his marathon training with his busy touring and recording schedule hasn't been easy - and Royce is already feeling tired as the big race approaches.

"I'm exhausted. I gotta keep it real!" he smiled. "It was difficult because I was on tour and had to run in random places."

"I don't know if I will be sore or exhausted," he added, "(but) I will get to that finish line!"

Prince Royce will be running to raise money for the Change for Kids education charity and The National Kidney Foundation, the latter of which is particularly close to his heart as his grandfather, Domingo De Leon, died from complications from a kidney cyst, and it's a health problem that runs in his family.

"My grandfather passed away before I was born; I never got to meet him," he shared. "I've had aunts who have gone through dialysis and have had kidney transplants. They get cysts in the kidneys and you inherit that. I definitely check myself. I pay attention to it."

The New York City Marathon, which takes place across all five boroughs, is the most popular in the world, with more than 98,000 applicants for the 2017 race. There were 51,394 runners who finished last year (16).