Category: Racing Joins “Bring Back the Mile”

GoGoRunning officially joined the“Bring Back the Mile” movement by hosting the Redmond Road Mile.  A semi-reliable source confirmed that GoGoRunning Headquarters received notification via phone call this afternoon that drug testing of all adult participants will be required at next years race.  The official statement was “El G’s records might fall…you better test them next year!”

May 19th was a record setting day.  Daniel Glick set the course record in the inaugural event that will stand for at least 364 days until next years event when he will have the opportunity to take down his own record.  Daniel’s time of 4:39 dips him under the 4:40 barrier.  He came in to the event with a seed time of 4:45.  Maybe we can get Daniel to send in his splits.

Karmen Stephenson (Employee #1 at GoGoRunning Headquarters) set the women’s mark by running a time of 5:57.  Her splits were 1:21 (1/4 mile), 1:30 (1/2 mile), 1:30 (3/4 mile), 1:36 (1 mile).

Paul Deaton set the masters mark by running a solid time of 5:16.  Check out a video of Paul here talking about training young kids.

Ruth Ference continued her excellent spring of running and triathlon racing and training (she got on the bike for additional training immediately after the race).  Ruth ran a Redmond Road Mile masters record of 7:37.  Check out Ruth here talking about her training and racing.

Providence Preparatory Academy won the Miles for Middle School competition and was awarded a plaque to display at their school.

Age Group Winners Included:

Females (40 and Over)
Ruth  Ference                           7:37            ,57,F,
Males (40 and Over)
Paul Deaton                          5:16            ,42,M,
Kyle McKinney                    5:55            ,41,M,
Todd Kelley                        7:09            ,43,M,

Females (39 and Under)
Karmen Stephenson               5:57            ,32,F,
Jessica Vihon                          6:07            ,31,F,
Alexis Headrick                       6:32            ,34,F,
Males (39 and Under)
Jim Alred                                   5:27            ,39,M,
Andy Stevens                            5:42            ,34,M,

Boys and Girls Elementary School (Ages 10 and Under)
John   Glick                        6:34            ,7,M,
Nolan Kelley                       6:54            ,9,M,
Braden Camp                     7:38            ,10,M,
Ansley Davenport             7:11            ,9,F,


Boys and Girls Miles for Middle School Mile (11-13 years old)
Clay Milford                         5:25            ,12,M
John Prosser Deaton       7:36            ,11,M,
Mason Hunter                  8:43            ,12,M,
Sarah Glick                         6:09            ,12,F,
Abigail Decker                  8:10            ,12,F,
Shea Kelley                         8:57            ,12,F,


Girls High School (14-18 years old)
Elizabeth Bressette           6:33            ,14,F,

Boys High School Invite (14-18 years old)
Daniel Glick                          4:39            ,16,M,
Zack Jordan                          4:52            ,18,M,
Jared Deaton                        5:06            ,15,M,
Elijah Glick                           5:14            ,14,M,

Count your Zzz’s as Blessings

According to the National Sleep Foundation, most adults need 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night to function at their best. The deeper the sleep (and the more you dream) the more benefits you receive. As runners our goal should be to give our body the best recovery possible now so that we can push its limits as far as possible later.

While you’re asleep your body’s growth hormones are actively building muscle mass and repairing tissues. Other types of hormones released while you sleep help your body fight off infection, which contributes to keeping you healthy or recover from illness. Furthermore, even your weight is affected by how much you sleep. Studies show that people who sleep less than 5 hours a night are more likely to become obese than people who sleep 7-8 hours. Finally, sleep helps improve your mood, which in turn improves your attitude while running.

So how do you get a good night’s sleep and enjoy all the recovery benefits?

Here are some Do’s and Don’ts as recommended by the National Sleep Foundation.

DO for a Good Night Sleep

  • Treat your bed as a sanctuary from the stresses of the day. Use it for sleep only!
  • Set and stick to a sleep schedule. Go to bed and wake up at the same time each day, even on the weekends. This routine will help program your body to feel tired when it’s time for bed and help you to wake up feeling refreshed.
  • Dim the lights in the evening as you wind down activities. This tells your body that bedtime is approaching.
  • Put night lights in the bathrooms and halls to avoid light from resetting your body clock when using the bathroom at night.
  • Take a hot bath or shower. This can help you relax and cause a drop in body temperature that helps you feel drowsy.
  • Keep the temperature in your bedroom cooler at night than during the day.
  • Make your bedroom a noise free zone. Remove distractions such as computers or televisions. If outside noises wake you up at night try earplugs or a white noise machine.
  • Turn your clock away from your bed so you don’t worry about how much time has passed.
  • Get out of bed if you are not sleepy.

DON’T do for a Good Night Sleep

  • Use caffeine containing products at night or even late afternoon.
  • Eat a large meal close to bedtime. Your body cannot rest while digesting a large meal.
  • Consume alcoholic beverages at bedtime – it can rob you of  deep sleep and dreaming.
  • Take late afternoon naps. If you do nap, keep them under 1 hour and before 3 p.m.

Are you getting adequate sleep? What do you do to stay refreshed?


How to Plan Your Racing Schedule

By Peter Pfitzinger |

One of the most critical components to distance running success is developing your racing plan. Unfortunately, many runners do not put much thought into planning their races, and base their race schedules primarily on convenience, tradition, or “what everyone else is doing.” If you are passionate about racing, then it is worth taking the time to develop your racing plan for optimal performance. Here are a few guidelines to assist you in developing an optimal racing schedule:

1. Select your goal race(s): To reach your full potential, it is essential to select a specific race to focus on and prepare for. After you identify your goal race, the next step is to set a performance target that is difficult enough to be motivating but which is also achievable. You can then develop the rest of your racing plan to help you achieve your best performance in your goal race.

You may be able to set up your racing schedule for two goal races at different distances. This works well only if the shorter race comes first. For example, if you want to run personal bests (PBs) at 10 K and 10 miles, it would be ideal to have the 10 K race a few weeks before the 10 miler. You will recover relatively quickly from the shorter race and will have the sustained speed to help you set a PB at the longer distance.

2. Include several tune-up races before your goal race: If you train hard and consistently then you will get very fit. You will not, however, be optimally prepared to run your best race because you will not have developed “race toughness.” Tune-up races are races of lesser importance that you use to help prepare for both the physical and mental demands of your goal race. They help reduce your anxiety before your goal race by allowing you to practice a pre-race routine. Tune-up races are also an opportunity to learn to push yourself to your very limit.

3. Avoid the temptation to over-race: The most common mistake that runners make in developing their racing plans is to race too often. Each tune-up race should have a role in your preparation for your goal race. Running too many races in a row takes away the enthusiasm for racing so when your goal race comes along it is hard to put your heart and soul into it. It takes discipline to pick and choose your races, but that discipline will pay off in your goal race.

Racing every two or three weeks is often enough to develop race toughness but infrequent enough so you will not get sick and tired of racing. An example of a reasonable race schedule would be to include tune-up races two, four, six, and nine weeks prior to your goal race.

Read more…

ING Miami Half Marathon 2012 Experience

Recently I (Coach Jay) ran the ING Miami Half Marathon. My training has been incredible and I was ready for a fast race. However my times reflected a different outcome. Despite the slower time, I still consider this race a success. Here is my racing experience.

Thoughts on the course:
The course was very flat, although it had several rough patches where the road was uneven and lots of little potholes and manhole covers. There were one or two bridges that we ran over. One in the first mile and I think there was another one but I am not sure due to the fact that it was 72 degrees and 90% humidity and getting hotter every mile.

Wow! It was a rough race for me for several reasons:

  • The weather was much warmer than I have run in all year.
  • The wind was blowing pretty hard after the first 3-4 miles.
  • In general I just had an off day.
  • I think I might have set my expectations too high based on the weather and conditions

I was hoping to run 5:07 to 5:10 pace for the half, so about 1:08:00 pace or so. Well, my splits were not even close.

Here they are my race splits:

5:03, 5:09, 5:15, 5:18, 5:32, 5:31, 5:31, 5:39, 5:33, 5:44 (perhaps the hardest mile I have ever run…I was so hot), 5:43, 5:38, 5:30, 1:31 (1:12:43)

  • Although this was a tough day with a less than pleasant result there were a few positives.
  • My splits were slowly getting worse and worse. I had to fight the negative thoughts that always come up when you are not running as well as you expect. I did fight and consistently caught people throughout the race. I think that practicing staying positive in this race will pay off in my next race when I actually run well.
  • I learned that I really do enjoy the process of running and training.
  • Haile Gebresalasie said “If you can’t take the good with the bad then you should not take the good.”  I am looking forward to the next good.

Two final Miami Half Marathon comments:
The aid stations were giving out these 2.5” X 4” plastic bags of water.  I couldn’t find a website for this company. If anyone knows what I am talking about please email me at

The volunteers were saying to bite the bag open and then drink the water. So, I bite the first one I get and the plastic piece from the bag shoots to the back of my throat. I can feel it clogging my esophagus and I can’t breath. This was about the 5th mile or so, I can’t really remember exactly where the aid station was located. In addition to being a serious hazard for the runners these bags of water tasted like a plastic bag. Several people were complaining about the bags after the race. I think it is very possible that someone could choke if race directors continue to use these bags.

My introduction to Shiatsu:
Tom Sweeney M.Ed, LMT worked on my after the race with some Shiatsu and identified a problem with my body that I have been having for a few years.  Apparently, my Yin and Yang is not balanced.  My left glute is pulling my left illium posteriorly and this is causing my right gracillis is very tight and needs to be released.  I will be seeing the Chiropractor as soon as possible. I will be trying to learn the art of Shiatsu.

Running for a Season

Running for a SeasonOne of the common mistakes new runners make is to run aimlessly all year round. Unfortunately, our bodies and minds don’t work that way. We make the biggest improvements by focusing on shorter concentrated efforts (seasons) focused around a specific goal.

In running, this means choosing a “championship” race that fits your goals as well as several “regular season” races for practice. Many runners choose 2 championship races per year, as well as 4 to 6 build-up races during the 3 months before each championship. In this scenario the championship races would be ideally about 6 months apart with a 3 month “off-season” between racing seasons.

Choosing a Championship Race
It’s important to find a championship race that presents some sort of challenge. This could mean a race you’re striving to win, a course with challenging terrain, a fast course to help you run a personal best, or perhaps just a distance farther than you’ve raced before. No matter your goal, it’s important to choose a race that will inspire you to train hard and stay motivated.

Choosing a Race Schedule
During your season it is important to practice running hard to prepare for your big day. If your championship race is your first marathon, you may want to start with a 5k, then move up to 10k, 10 miles, and Half Marathon. Or, if you’re training for a 5k, you may want to race mostly 5k’s with a 10k for a challenge.

The Off-Season
After a big race it’s important to take time to let your body recover from the stress. It’s also a good time to take a few days (or weeks) off then focus on rehab for injuries, easy running, fewer workouts, and core. Remember how much fun it is to run and start dreaming about your next goal!

GoGo Running Sponsors Area Middle School Cross Country Meet

Download Complete Results

Eight local middle schools convened for the annual Area Middle School Cross Country Championship on Thursday, October 13. All 208 finishers completed the season with championship efforts in the two mile race. The girls and boys races were hosted by Berry Middle School on the Clara Bowl course.

Model Middle School won the girls race with a low score of 28 points. Jacqueline Vincente led the Model girls’ team in an upset win over Kirsten Holmes of Coosa Middle School. Jacqueline and Kirsten ran 13:14 and 13:35 respectively to finish first and second place.

Darlington Middle school won the boys race with a score of 46 to the second place team score of 72 by Pepperell Middle School. Darlington was led by Jared Deaton holding off an inspired performance by Zach Williams of Pepperell. Jared and Zach finished with times of 11:40 and 12:14.

In the girls race Jacqueline’s individual winning performance was followed up by an impressive team for Model. The first five runners on each team are scored based on finish place with the lowest team score winning. Model’s scoring five included Alex Quarles in third place, Kennedy Boswell in sixth, Brooke Hinkley eighth, Peyton Brooke ninth and Makayla Keasler tenth.  Berry Middle and Unity Christian Middle were permitted to combine teams due to low numbers of participants. The Berry /Unity combination resulted in a second place team finish in the girls’ race with 54 points. Mattie Rountree from Berry led the way with a fourth place finish in 13:44. Other Berry scoring runners included Gracie Frederick in ninth place, Ramsey Cook twelfth and Addie Grace Trejo fifteenth. Sarah Glick represented Unity in the second place team effort with a 14:53 fourteenth place finish. Darlington finished third as a team in the girls race led by the fifth place individual finish of Mamie Johnson in 13:48.

The first seven individual finishers were named All Area including Jacqueline Vincente of Model in first place, Kirsten Holmes of Coosa in second, Alex Quarles of Model in third, Mattie Rountree of Berry in fourth, Mamie Johnson of Darlington in fifth, Kennedy Boswell of Model in sixth and Sara Beth Payne of Armuchee. Sara Beth was the first finisher for Armuchee Middle School in a time of 14:04. Other girls’ teams included Coosa Middle School in fifth place with 150, Pepperell Middle School in sixth with 176, and St Mary’s Middle School in eighth with 263. Grace Hufford led Pepperell with a time of 15:11 finishing sixteenth individually. Alani Moo Young led the way for St Mary’s with a 16:38 in thirty-sixth place overall.

The boys winning team score for Darlington included Jared Deaton in first, Clayton Bennett in third, Clayburn Milford in sixth, Blake Lowenberg in twelfth and Jamie Beck in twenty-fourth. Darlington managed a 22 point advantage over Pepperell in the championship race although Pepperell had finished before Darlington in all but one previous race this season. Pepperell’s scoring runners included Zach Williams in second place, Brian Vincent in fifth, Ivan Sandoval in thirteenth, Parker Covington in seventeenth, and Alex Santillon in thirty-fifth. The team race for second, third, fourth and fifth was even closer with only eighteen points separating four schools. Berry/Unity finished third with 80 points, Coosa fourth with 84 and Model fifth with 90. Armuchee finished sixth with 210 and St Mary’s seventh with 313.

The top seven All Area boys’ finishers were Jared Deaton of Darlington, Zach Williams of Pepperell, Clayton Bennett of Darlington, Brandon Ray of Coosa, Brian Vincent of Pepperell, Clayburn Milford of Darlington and Elijah Glick of Unity Christian. While the two top teams had five of the seven All Area individuals. Coosa’s Brandon Ray finished with a time of 12:23 and Elijah Glick represented Unity with a time of 12:47. Berry was led by John Berry Bowling’s ninth place finish time of 12:54. Model was led by Trey Leonards’ 13:05 tenth place finish. Jared Shelton finished eighteenth in a time of 13:24 leading Armuchee and Mutsa Myamurnga finished twenty-sixth in a time of 13:50 to lead St Mary’s.

Complete results for guys, girls and overall team scores.

GoGo Running was pleased to be able to help provide the awards for this race by sponsoring the event. The top three teams in each race received trophies and the top twenty individuals received medals. The top seven All Area finishers in each race also received a t-shirt.

The GoGo Running efforts to promote the sport in the Rome Area will continue with the recent announcement of a Cross Country banquet to recognize the Rome News Tribune All Area High School runners. All the middle school runners and coaches are invited to attend the banquet. More information is available at

My First Race Back…Just Like Riding a Bike

I raced a 5k last weekend and did pretty well for the amount of training that I’ve been able to do, 21:30 was the result. It had been 2 years since my last race. I found out that I was pregnant in November of 09′ and then my running just kinda tapered off to nothing for a long while. Thankfully I have been able to get in some consistent (but not high) mileage for the past 6 months. So I decided it was time to lace up the racing flats, even though I did not feel very prepared or speedy.

I went to bed the night before a little nervous. But I was confident that I could run about 7:00 minute pace. I did not loose sleep thinking about the race.  In fact I woke up feeling refreshed and ready to go. The nervous feeling that I had felt so many times before was not really present. But the lack of nervousness did not prevent my body from, how shall I say it, preparing for a race. I had to visit the restroom 3 times during the first 30 minutes of being out of bed.

Stomach empty?  Check. I then began getting really jittery like I had a double shot of espresso, but I had not yet drank my routine cup of Earl Grey tea. Adrenaline present? Check. When I got to the race and began my warm-up I had to purposely run slow because I felt like all the adrenaline was going to surge me into race pace before I even toed the start line. Controlled warm-up? Check. Then came the final strides before the gun. I felt fluid and ready to run fast. Muscles firing? Check. Then came the gun.

I got off the line in a good position, not in front but also not behind anyone slower than me. My race splits were pretty even which is good. But anyone who has run a race knows that the last half is always hard no matter how fit you are or how good you feel at the gun.

The first mile felt good but I soon began wondering “why am I doing this?” The second mile burned and I though about stopping several times. And then all of a sudden the focus came.  Just like riding a bike, all the years of racing came back to me and the mental toughness took over. I locked eyes on the lady in front of me and made it my goal to keep pace with her, stride for stride.  Poor thing didn’t know she was a pawn in my race strategy. I passed her before the 2 mile mark and found my next victim.

After passing 3 more people, the fatigue began to really set in. At that point the strategy switched from “who can I pass?” to “focus on your form and stride length” and “finish with a kick.” I was able to do just that, finish with a kick. My legs were jell-o after that final push to the finish line but I felt great. Being able to compete after so much time off was wonderful and I hope to lace up the racing flats again soon.

So now the question is, does anyone else have a similar experience of taking time off from running and then getting back into racing?  Or maybe you have a race that really stands out?  We are looking for guest bloggers.  If you have a story or training advice email us at

Clocktower 5k, 2011

August 20th, 2011
Rome, Ga.
By Alice Coughlin

The Clock Strikes Again for the Annual Running of the Clocktower 5K

The Gary Tillman Memorial Clocktower 5K road race commenced at 8 o’clock Saturday morning.  Although this was the 26th running of Clocktower, it was the sixth year in which the race commemorated Gary Tillman, a Rome business man and avid runner, and his untimely death in a plane accident in December 2005.  The race benefits The Exchange Club Family Resource Center.   Thus far, the Family Resource Center has helped over 6,000 people including over 1,000 families.  Proceeds from the race benefit the Family Resource Center in their efforts to assist in the prevention of child abuse, along with providing support groups for families.

The Clocktower 5K has remained a major tradition in Rome for local athletes to take on the daunting Clocktower hill. The Clocktower of Rome rests on one of Rome’s seven hills and allows visitors to view the entire city from its summit. Aside from the top runners and top masters runners being awarded prizes, the top three runners in each age group are also awarded.  Every racer receives a t-shirt on race day and is eligible for door prizes.

Race director Gail Johnson expected 500 total runners, with 375 preregistered runners and 145 total walkers including 87 preregistered participants.  According to Johnson, the heat is always a challenge, but it never keeps people from coming out.

“The heat never stops people,” said Johnson,“We moved the race to November for three to four years, but there were always weather problems.”

Daniel Moses, Rome resident and 2010 Berry College alum, raced Clocktower for his fourth time.  Moses mentioned that the heat is always a factor, especially for road races in August.

“It was a better temperature than last year, I wasn’t in as good of shape and the humidity was unwavering.”

The fastest time of the day was posted by Shorter University senior, Oscar Ogwaro.  Even with this being his first Clocktower 5K, he dominated the field in a time of 14:50.  The first female in the race was Justyna Mudy, a 2011 Shorter University alum running with the GoGo running team, with a time of 17:30.

This was Mudy’s second time taking on Clocktower.  In 2010 and in 2008, Mudy was unable to race due to injuries; however, this year she was pleased with her performance which she described as a combination of a race and a workout-type effort.

“Today, it was actually good.  I did not expect this time with the hill,” said Mudy.  Although Mudy has completed her collegiate years of racing, she still plans to participate in both road races and open cross country races this fall.

Another Roman runner, Jesse Baker, utilized his race as a test for his upcoming senior season at Darlington Academy.  Although Baker ran approximately the same time as last year’s race, he stated that he had trained much harder than last summer and had admittedly higher expectations for this year’s race.

With several years of running and with this being his sixth Clocktower race, Baker spoke with a veteran’s perspective on racing expectations, “I’m just glad to be running and I just want to stay injury free.”

Another local runner, Jenna Tilton, is a sophomore at Rome High School.  For Tilton, this was her fourth Clocktower race.  According to Tilton, Clocktower was her first ever 5K race three summers ago.  Similarly to how she performed in her first 5K race, Tilton won her age group this year.

Regarding the race, Tilton said, “The race makes me feel really good.  It’s a good gauge and I was able to hit my target time.”  Tilton was able to improve her time of 20:58 during last year’s Clocktower to 20:30 this year.

Berry College head coach, Paul Deaton, participated in this morning’s race with his two sons, Jared and John Prosser, in tow.  Deaton described the race conditions as “typical for August.”

“Well, I love this race, even though it’s very hard.  Because I like the way the running community shows support for it.  It’s the best race in town.”

Aside from the race day excitement, post-race activities included a Sidewalk Sale in the morning and the River Revelry in Heritage Park Saturday evening.  The Clocktower 5K once again united the Rome community by celebrating the pursuit of physical endeavors, raising money for a worthy cause and honoring a former community member.

Check out the race website for results