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Olympian Paul Chelimo to speak at GoGo Running All-Area Banquet

ROME, Ga. – Paul Chelimo, the silver medalist in the 5,000-meter race at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games who took a bronze medal at the recent World Championships, is returning to the city where he first started racing in the United States when the highly-acclaimed runner will be the guest speaker at the annual GoGo Running High School All-Area Banquet on Friday, Dec. 1 and join those who will take part in the River City Bank/Rome Half Marathon on Saturday, Dec. 2.

“We are so fortunate to be able to welcome Paul back to Rome,” said Jay Stephenson, who coached Chelimo at Shorter University in 2010 when the Kenyan-born athlete who first began competing in the United States and is now an American citizen, serving as a Specialist in the U.S. Army as a member of the Army’s World Class Athlete Program.

“What is exciting is knowing that Paul will inspire the high school athletes and everyone else who hears him at the banquet,” Stephenson said. “He has a great story to tell, not only as a world-class runner but as a person. We’re honored to have him come back where it all started.”

Chelimo made an immediate impact in the track world when he came to Rome to compete for Shorter, winning four NAIA national titles on the indoor and outdoor ovals. In 2011, Chelimo transferred to North Carolina-Greensboro where he was a five-time NCAA All-American and closed out his collegiate career as a World University Games Silver Medalist.

In 2014, Chelimo enlisted in the Army and earn his citizenship, and as a member of the Army’s WCAP team has made monumental strides in the world, the biggest coming at last year’s Olympic Games when he battled eventual winner Mo Farah in an epic duel to the finish. Chelimo’s silver medal was the first for America in the 5K since 1964.
Last month in London, Chelimo found himself once again in the world spotlight when he took third place at the IAAF World Championships.

Registration for the 13.1-mile Half Marathon, hosted by GoGo Running, has begun for the event, which also includes a Half Relay and a 5-kilometer race.

The River City Bank/Rome Half Marathon, Half Relay and 5k will all begin and end at State Mutual Stadium on Saturday, with the 5k starting at 8 a.m. and the Half Marathon and Relay starting at 8:05. Half Marathon, Relay, and 5k Finishers receive long sleeve tech T’s, and will enjoy a post-race pancake breakfast.

Before the runners toe the line, the area’s high school teams and athletes will be honored the night before at the 2017 GoGo Running All-Area Cross Country Banquet that will be held Friday, Dec. 1 at 6 p.m. at Berry College.

In the last four years, the race has raised nearly $12,000 for the running programs at area high schools, with last year’s event bringing in $3,600 that was donated back to programs. Schools that have received at least one donation check include Armuchee, Coosa, Model, Pepperell, Rome, Calhoun, Gordon Central, Rockmart, Darlington, Providence Prep Academy, St. Mary’s, Cedartown and Unity Christian. Some of these schools have only had volunteers for the race for one year while others have participated with volunteers each year, which is the requirement for schools to be eligible for a donation.

To register and for more information on the River City Bank Half Marathon, Half Relay and 5k, and the GoGo Running All-Area Banquet go to or contact GoGo Running at The Shoe Box at 706-291-0752.

First Marathon leads Rome’s Matt Davis down a positive road

ROME, Ga. – The look on his face and a pronounced fist pump spoke volumes when Matt Davis crossed the finish line in May.
And for good reasons.

After all, it was the first time in the 38-year-old’s life that he had run 26.2 miles – a marathon – when the local radio executive and personality competed in the 2017 Flying Pig Marathon in Cincinnati. Even more, however, the accomplishment realized a life-changing goal Davis had set for himself.

“I was looking to do something positive,” said Davis. “I decided I wanted to be the best version of myself and I did enjoy running.
“My goal was to run a marathon by the time I was 40 so I decided to go for it.”

Lacing up a pair of shoes was nothing new to Davis, who had casually run on his own before and even took part in some 5-kilometer (3.1 miles) races several years ago. But when he set his marathon goal more than a year ago, when he was admitted at the hospital, Davis understood that a firmer commitment was needed.

“I did some on-line research about how to begin training and I knew that one of the first things I needed to do was to find the proper shoes,” Davis said, adding that he read an article on ShoeHero which was about the best comfortable shoes and with this he made his way to GoGo at The Shoe Box to begin the process. “They took a lot of time with me. They want to make sure you get the right fit.”

That visit led to a meeting with co-owner and running coach Jay Stephenson.

“Jay helped fit me for my first pair of running shoes,” said Davis. “From that first meeting, I started talking with him about running. I did a few 5Ks, began to run three to four times a week and eventually I started increasing the distance.

“I went from having no physical activity and a sedimentary lifestyle to an active healthy lifestyle,” he added, noting that he had dropped 20 pounds since starting. “When I run I listen to music, podcasts as even listen to people talking about running. But a lot of times I don’t listen to anything. I enjoy the tranquility.”

Davis eventually ran his first half-marathon in the spring of 2016, a race that led him to entering the marathon in Cincinnati and focus on training for the demands it takes.

“Jay really helped me with the nutrition side of it and how important that is,” said Davis. “He helped me develop a plan to train for the race and for the weeks leading up to it.

“Running is so mental. To be able to talk with somebody who knows about it and has the knowledge – Jay helped me so much through his support.”

“I helped Matt learn what to take and when to take it,” Stephenson said, “and he sent me updates of what he was doing regularly.”

The Flying Pig course – it started in downtown Cincinnati, went across the Ohio River and into Kentucky, into the city’s suburbs and eventually finished back downtown at the Great American Ball Park – proved to be a difficult one at the start. At the three-and-a-half mile mark, the runners immediately face a taxing 300-foot climb in a five-mile stretch.

“The first part of the race was really, really hard because it was uphill,” Davis said. “But after that it flattened out a little.”

“Running a marathon is hard,” said Stephenson. “But I thought he did an amazing job. There’s a lot more ahead of him.”

All told, Davis – he has already set his sights on his second marathon and will run in the Rocket City Marathon in Huntsville, Ala., in December – covered the Flying Pig distance in a little over five hours, a respectable time for marathoner newbies. Yet anyone who has run the race will agree; finishing it is an accomplishment in itself.

“I can’t begin to describe what it felt like to finish,” Davis said.


Running coach Jay Stephenson, who recently competed in the 2017 Boston Marathon and has been coaching runners of all ages and abilities for over 14 years has joined the staff of the American Distance Project, a non-profit organization founded in 2009 by Scott Simmons that strives to develop American runners. Coach Jay will fulfill a needed gap for the American Distance Project by coaching non-professional and community athletes all over the country.

“I look forward to helping runners around the nation run to their best potential possible whether it be for their next race, their first race or for a personal best,” Stephenson said about helping bring top coaching and training principles to everyone.

“Scott Simmons coached me back in 2005 and I believe in his training principles,” said Stephenson, “It wasn’t until I trained with a progressive approach that I saw my potential and ran 29:43 for 10k at the US Road Championship in 2005.” “I am confident that connecting the non-professional runner with professional coaching is the best approach to their success.”

As a member of the American Distance Project staff, Stephenson will work with runners of all ages and all levels, providing personalized training and individual nutrition plans through his website Runners also receive a free coaching DVD where Coach Jay covers every important topic in his 90 minute DVD

Coach Jay checked off another running milestone in an already impressive career last week when, in his first appearance in the Boston Marathon, the 35-year-old finished in the top 600 in the 30,000-runner field. He earned an automatic qualifying spot in Boston by winning the Last Chance Marathon in Grand Rapids, Mich., earlier this year.

The founder of GoGoRunning and the co-owner with Powell Fulton of GoGo at The Shoe Box, Coach Jay was a three-time All-American at Berry College before graduating in 2003, and was the 2004 USATF Club Steeplechase National Champion. He has PR’s of 3:54 for 1500m, 14:18 for 5k, 29:43 for 10k, 8:53 for 3000mSC, 1:09:23 for the Half Marathon, and 2:48 for the Marathon (currently working on lowering this one).

Coach Jay has coached runners at all levels, including:

  • Coached over 300 people to success and PR’s
  • Saori Araki to running first 5k and 10k ever
  • Judith Tutin to first 5k
  • Charis Morgan to first 800m, Mile, 5k, 10k, and Half Marathon
  • John Berry Bowling from 2:02 to 1:59 in HS 800m
  • Scott Gray ran first Marathon
  • Molly Vicchrilli completed first Ragnar Relay
  • Diedra White Multiple PR’s in the Marathon at Savannah and Augusta Marathons
  • Steve Cordle Ran first Marathon in Grand Masters Category
  • Daniel Seo Multiple time Boston Qualifier
  • Jared Carson 2017 3rd Place Austin Marathon 2:35
  • 13 year old Sam Tullis – 5:03 mile
  • Paul Chelimo: Responsible for recruiting him and bringing him to the US where he would eventually earn Silver — 2016 Olympic 5,000-meter silver medalist
  • Justyna Mudy-Mader: A 5-time National Champion in the NAIA, 2-time Elite qualifier to the Boston Marathon, and a 2-time winner of the Rocket City Marathon.
  • Oscar Ogwaro: 1:04 Half Marathon and Qualifer in the 2012 US Olympic Trials Marathon

Making it Fit with Bogs

Making it fit perfect

I recently worked with a young lady that was having trouble getting her Bog Boot to fit properly. She had a very high arch (we scan everyone’s foot to check out arch type and then match it up to a shoe) and really wanted the feeling of something touching her arch in the Rain Boot, however the shoe did not have room vertically for an additional insert because the additional insert was making the shoe fit very tight.

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Here is how I “Made it Fit.” I took a ¼” Felt pad like the one below and stuck it to the under side of the insert. This gave here the “arch touch” she was looking for without adding volume to other parts of the shoe. The great thing about felt is that is compresses down over time and will give her a smooth transition in the shoe while still providing the slight touch on her foot. I also set her up with another set of pads to stick in another pair of shoes she had at home.

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Here is a short video of how I placed the felt pad. It took a couple of tries to find the sweet spot on the shoe for her foot as it would in most cases.

Do you awesome service with your footwear? Come see us at our store. We offer help for everyone!

Are you having extreme problems with your feet or footwear?  Fill out this contact form and our team will be in touch to set up an appointment with you around your schedule.


Running with Passion

German poet Christian Hebbel once said “Nothing great in the world has ever been accomplished without passion.”

Take a look at these two championship photos you’ll notice one thing in common: these runners competed with heart. They found an event that they could put their whole mind body and spirit into, and they gave it their best effort.

Obviously we can’t all compete at the world class level like the athletes in these photos. But we certainly can learn from them how to get the most out of our running experience. The answer is passion. One of my favorite characteristics of track is that there is an event for everyone. Every person on the planet has an event best suited for their talents and their goals. Our job is to find it and own it. Our job is to fight off all the excuses and fears and become the runner and person we were meant to be.  Some of us will end up as marathoners, while others (perhaps the more sane crowd) will stick with the mile or 5k and be happy. The point is simply that each of us is capable of the passion displayed in these pictures. There is no greater joy in running than to know you have given your best effort – so it is our job as students of the sport to examine our hearts and be faithful to follow them to the finish.

Race Recap: Justin won the marathon in Huntsville

Posted in STZAFETA

Monday, December 17, 2012 11:38 Mariusz Biel ATHLETICS

Justin MUDs, was runner Victoria Steel Will won in the 36thMarathon played in Huntsville (USA). Miroslaw Barszcz ward winning coach 2:46,58 ahead of time, the second at the finish of the Indianapolis Jackie Dikos nearly 6 minutes (2:52,39).

For 28-year-old Justine MUDs was the third of his career running a distance of 42 195 km. A year ago, won the 34th Kiawah Island Golf Resort Marathon (South Carolina) at the time of 2:42,05 – a new course record – and this year, in May, was the second in a marathon in Green Bay (2:51:52).

This year MUDs Justin graduated from the University of Shorter. In America, represents the city of Rome, Georgia. According to the official website PZLA, after the race in Huntsville MUDs Justin said that her dream is to get the minimum and the start of the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in 2016

Should You Run Twice Per Day

By Peter Pfitzinger |

Runners often start running twice per day before weekly mileage warrants it. Doing “doubles” sounds like serious training, so it must be better preparation. In specific situations, this is true. Most runners, however, should resist the urge to switch from single runs to doubles as training mileage increases. Let’s take a look at when double workouts are and are not beneficial, and how to add doubles to your training program.

A basic principle to follow is to not do double workouts until you have maximized the amount you can handle in single workouts. Staying with longer single runs builds endurance, while shorter doubles allow you to train at a faster pace. Double runs can also be beneficial in speeding recovery. Two short runs will help you recover more quickly than one longer run.

The weekly mileage at which you should add double workouts to your training schedule depends on the distance you race (see table below). The longer the race, the more your training should focus on endurance-based adaptations such as depleting your glycogen reserves to provide a stimulus for your body to store more glycogen, and training your muscles to utilize more fat at a given speed. Logically, you will provide a greater stimulus for these adaptations through a single 12 mile run than by doing a 7 mile and a 5 mile run at the same pace.

As shown in the table, if you are preparing for a marathon and are running less than 75 miles per week, then you should not be running doubles. After you schedule your long run and a mid-week medium long run, there is really no reason to double to get in the remaining miles. Once your marathon training calls for more than 75 miles per week, however, there is a definite role for double workouts in your program.

The shorter the race that you are preparing for, the lower the mileage at which you should add double workouts. If you are preparing to race 5 km, for example, your interval workout is the most important training session of the week, and you will need to keep your legs fresh. You will also want to maintain a faster pace during some of your normal training runs, which is accomplished more easily during two short runs than one longer run.

Read more on how to introduce double runs into your training.


Athlete Spotlight: Ruth Ference

Keywords : Masters Running, Tuesday Night Track Night, GoGoRunning
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What meal to eat before a Marathon

Keywords : Eating before a Marathon, Pre-race meal, Marathon fuel
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How to Start Running in 3 Quick Steps

Running is a simple sport and starting to run is easy. All you need are shoes…well kinda. It is a simple sport, but I think the reason that some people find it so hard is that getting stared can be a tough process. If you make an early mistake like wearing the wrong shoes for your body, running too much or too fast, or not understanding potential injury signs and prevention, you’ll be set up for frustration.

3 Steps to Start Running

Step 1: Shoes
Buy a pair of training shoes that don’t kill your feet. Go to your local running store and get assessed for what shoe fits you the best.

Step 2: Training
Set yourself up for success with a structured training plan. For example, we have a great beginner’s training program that will help you get going even if you have never run before. The plan is free to download as a PDF or $12.99 for access to the plan through an interactive online training log. This plan was originally created for the Berry ½ Marathon, 10k and 5k. Since then hundreds of runners have completed the plan with great results.  Don’t forget to build your base of running knowledge by going through the GoGoRunning Training Tutorial.Recently, a 65 year old woman who had never run before completed the 12 week schedule and lost 22 pounds with our diet recommendations and customized training help.

Step 3: Staying Healthy

Staying healthy in running is all about not doing too much too soon and not running too fast too soon. Make sure your body is strong and improve your running form to reduce injuries.

Common Running Injuries:
We hope that if you see one of these coming you can stop it before it gets unmanageable. Watch these Injury Prevention videos:


Daily core for runners :
Start by doing 2-3mins of core exercises each time after you run.  This will help you build general strength to stay healthy.  The lunge matrix should also be completed prior to running each time you run.

Reducing your chance of injury through good running form:


Coach Jay and Josh Carson collaborated to write this post on how to start running. You know about Jay and here is some background on Josh.

Josh Carson is the Technical Sales Representative for Newton Running in the Southeast territory. Newton Running is the leader in natural running shoes today, and is one of the largest growing shoe companies in this category. Josh travels throughout the Southeast promoting and educating individuals on the benefits of Newton Running and the technology behind them. For more information on Newton Running, check out the website at

He was a collegiate distance runner at Shorter University. Josh hold PR’s of 32:30 for 10k and 15:37 for 5k.  Josh debuted in the 1/2 Marathon in 2011 running 1:12:30 and getting second in the Publix 1/2 Marathon.