HALF MARATHON COACHES
Coach Murray has been a runner as long as he can remember. His first marathon was the 1985 Chicago Marathon and he has completed races of all distances from the mile to marathons over a 40 year period including the 1996 and 2006 Boston Marathons. He has trained with several coaches including noted authors Jeff Galloway and Pat Connelly. Murray has worked with several world class runners, including Cosmas Musyoka and Jonathan Ndambuki, who was the second place finisher at the Los Angeles Marathon. He has assisted runners and walkers of all different levels in completing marathons and half marathons for the past 13 years with a 100% completion rate for those who "toed the line" and has been a coach with Team Challenge since its inception in 2007. He is employed by the State Bar of California as a supervisor and enjoys going to wine country, sporting events and music. One thing which especially excites him is the prospect of a new team and helping those team members to reach their goal of completing a half marathon.
Coach Maureen was up and walking at a year, and she hasn’t stopped since! As youngster she always loved participating in running sports. After being inspired by her husband (Coach Bob) and their children’s athletic accomplishments, Maureen decided to try taking up running for a hobby but found walking to be her passion. She walked her first half marathon in San Francisco in 2007 and has continued to walk ever since. Along with being a wife, mom of four children and grandmother of five little ones, she is a registered nurse, CPR instructor and early childhood educator, at Hoag Hospital in Newport Beach. Maureen is driven to help in need people so feels very privileged to have the opportunity to coach for Team challenge.
Coach Rendy Williams is a passionate personal trainer with over 12 years experience in weight loss, group and corporate training, and sports specific training. She is most passionate about helping and encouraging others to reach their health and fitness goals while positively impacting their daily life, mental fortitude and confidence.
Coach Rendy started running in the 3rd grade and quickly realized her talent. She competed and ranked nationally in the Junior Olympics for both track and cross country. Her legs carried her to college on a scholarship at Henderson State University in Arkansas and helped her find her career path and passion.
Coach Rendy attended CNI College as well earning an in-depth education in personal training and is currently certified with the NSCA, National Strength and Conditioning Association. Her most recent continuing education brought her to Z-Health, a life changing perspective of training the body’s precise mobility and the neuroscience behind pain-free movement. Coach Rendy is returning for her 3rd season with Team Challenge.
If you're planning on running or walking a summer half-marathon, the time to start training is NOW! The most important thing you'll need to get started is a good pair of training shoes, and the most important feature of a running or walking shoe is how it fits YOUR foot. Don't worry what the Olympic Champion wears, and don't think about what color the shoe is; the only things that matter are how the shoes fit on your feet and how they fit your personal biomechanics. (Of course if the shoes fit your personal biomechanical needs AND come in Team Challenge orange and blue, well that wouldn't be a bad thing!)
Happy feet = happy training!
Q: I’m not currently running or walking more than a mile or two at a time a few days per week. How will I be able to finish a half-marathon?
A: Your coach will design a program for you based on your current level of fitness, whatever it may be. You’ll gradually build your mileage over the course of the coming months until you can walk or run (or with a combination of walking and running) a ten-mile workout. From there, well over 99% of our participants complete their half-marathons.
Q: What kind of shoes do I need?
A: Everyone has different feet and biomechanics. The staff at your local running/walking specialty store will be able to fit you for these needs, as well as your mileage level, and the surfaces on which you train. To find a local specialty store, head to www.runnersworld.com/store-finder
Q: What’s a “GU”?!
A: “Gu” and other sports gels (PowerGels, Cliff Shots, Hammer Gels, etc.) are concentrated forms of carbohydrate about the consistency of honey. They are an alternative to sports drinks and are designed to provide athletes with energy for endurance activities. Each gel contains about 100- 110 of concentrated carbohydrate. Many half-marathons will provide gels in the later stages (around mile 10) to give runners and walkers an energy boost for the last few miles. Although they are generally pretty easy on the stomach, especially when taken with water, it’s always a good idea to try gels several times in training first before using them on race day.
Q: I had to miss three days of training. How do I make up the lost days?
A: You don’t! If you’ve missed anything less than a full week of training, just jump right back into the schedule. If you missed more than a week, talk to your coach about modifying your schedule to get you back on track.
Q: My fingers swell during my training walks. What’s going on?
A: Your heart beats harder and faster when you train, so blood is sent more forcefully to the extremities. Muscle action helps to return blood back to the heart, but many walkers don’t pump their arms very much when they walk (they should!), so blood pools in the fingers. Swollen fingers are more common with changes in temperature, during pregnancy, and when electrolytes are out of whack. Clenching and unclenching your hands, or shaking them over your head will help to pump the blood out of your swollen fingers.