Learning to Love Charity Running

The ugly t-shirts, the pre-race nerves, the post-race bananas, the older guy who goes out way too fast; when I first started running I couldn’t get enough of that stuff. I was a race junkie, signing up for a local five or 10k every weekend, often in support of charities. But as I grew as a runner and my goals changed, I stopped racing as much and I started training differently. more » Read more

North: Mentor Cardinal Classic

All ten North girls, decked out in their new team warm-ups, descended from the bus on the first chilly morning of the season. In spite of a lingering cough, Sydnie slipped back into the role of leader for her team. Fellow-senior Ashleigh, done with her last summer obligations, was ready to kick off her farewell season. Lone freshman Cheyenne was sufficiently recovered from mono to make her high school cross-country more » Read more

North to South

Late August summer mornings are made for cross-country, with their damp warm air, piercing sun from the east shining down on lush, freshly mown grass. Though this particular late August morning wasn’t as hot as some, it was still hot. The course for the day’s race meandered through the mostly unshaded grounds of South High, either North High’s sister or rival school depending on who you talk to. After the starting shots rang more » Read more

North: The War on the Shore

For the first meet of the season, the North girls climbed onto a bus with their coaches and the boys’ team for the War on the Shore, an annual meet nearly an hour away in rural Ashtabula, Ohio, so close to the state border they were competing against Pennsylvanian teams. Neither of the senior girls were racing today; top-runner Sydnie was focused on the bigger meet coming up on Saturday and Ashleigh was busy more » Read more

North: An In-depth Look at a High School Cross Country Team

When the sky turns silvery blue with those big puffy clouds and the first leaves threaten to turn from green to gold, even while the temperatures say it’s still summer, cross-country season begins. In power-house districts, mostly concentrated in wealthy suburbs, huge teams of teens congregate in parks for repeats, drills and strides through meadows and trails. But in some, like Eastlake North, a Division I school in the working more » Read more

Do Women Runners Need Female Coaches?

Picture a running coach: someone in command, respected by their team, competent and knowledgeable about the sport. Maybe this person is holding a clipboard and stopwatch, and wearing a cap bearing the team’s name. Are you picturing a man, maybe in his fifties or sixties? I am. (I probably ruined the effect of this experiment with the title of this article, but you get the point.) I have that picture in more » Read more

What the Flock? Is Oiselle’s Volée Right for You?

Being a serious runner has its privileges. Brands often throw themselves at us, offering free merchandise in exchange for our tweets, ‘grams, and a place on our bodies at races. In their beginning, Oiselle was no different in this way than many brands. Through it’s brand ambassadorship program, the Volée, Oiselle offered loyal, socially connected runners a race kit and discounts on apparel. But things changed in 2014, when Oiselle introduced the Flock. more » Read more

What We Want You to Say to Us When We’ve Had a Bad Race

Have you ever raced with a friend who ended the race feeling horribly disappointed about her performance? It’s the worst. What do you say? What can you do to help her feel better? In the moment, when witnessing your friend experience the crushing feeling of defeat, it’s hard to know what to say or do, even though you know the pain she is feeling and have almost certainly felt it more » Read more

Uncoachable

“Maybe I should get a coach,” I mused as I perused the websites of several personal running coaches who all claimed that they could help me reach my goal. My husband sighed. Then he said, “You don’t really want a coach. You want someone to validate the choices that you’ve made with your training. You need to tell the coach, ‘Listen, I’m paying you to tell me that every decision more » Read more

Coping With Losing Your Team after Graduation

One of the reasons I love running is that it’s there for life. While all sports have their benefits to young athletes in school, running is one of the few that you can truly weave into your lifestyle forever, team or no team. But although it’s true that you can always run by yourself, it can be hard to stick to it and train smart, especially if you spent your entire middle school, high school, and more » Read more

A Look at Post-Collegiate Training Options

Graduation season has me thinking about some of the options for recent running grads who want to keep the dream alive. I was once in the same boat, and I want to share what choices are out there and what to consider when navigating your post-collegiate training options. Through my post-collegiate years I’ve trained in each of the three main options: a highly structured elite development team; a less structured competitive club more » Read more

5 Ways to Fail at a Group Run

While on the hunt for running friends, you see a group run posted at your local running store. The sign says something compelling like, “Moderately paced 5-7 mile run. Come and make connections with fellow runners in your community! Free beer and 10% off socks!” You show up after work, ready to make friends and enjoy a casual evening jog. The running store is bustling with people of all shapes more » Read more

SOS: Even Elites Bomb Workouts

Tough days are a fact of life. And in training, tough workouts are too; you push hard, then recover, then push harder, trying to get just a little closer to the sun every time without getting burned. But some days you try and fail, your body refusing to cooperate. Sometimes you just don’t have it in you. And believe me, it’s not just you! It’s all of us. You might more » Read more

Is A Coach Worth It?

For a relatively inexpensive report, we all know how quickly we can blow our budget purchasing everything people tell us we “need” or “must have” if we are truly going to be a runner. There is a constant barrage of footwear, apparel, nutrition and gear commercials. That guy in the running group swears by foam rollers, yoga, magical shakes and his Fabletics subscription. That fast chick you see attributes her more » Read more

Runsick

In January I packed my suitcase, left my 9-5 life in Columbus, Ohio and headed for sunny Spain, where my future looked a little brighter. In Columbus my work life, relationships, and apartment were only so-so. One thing I took for granted though, was that my running life was stellar. In 2013 I discovered the magic created by a tight-knit training group and it made the sport that much better more » Read more