This will be my 6th season with Team Challenge. Prior to joining TC the furthest that I had run was a 5K. That being said, I was very nervous to take the first step. I remember my first season was amazing, with every week came a new milestone for me. I have since completed 8 Half Marathons, and countless 5K's, 10K's, and mud runs.
I have been a Certified Fitness and Nutrition Coach for 4 years, specializing in Vegetarian Nutrition. In my spare time I have a full time job in sales, two great kids, two dogs and a husband. I have a true passion for a healthy, balanced lifestyle. I believe your fitness needs to fit into your lifetime, and if you believe in yourself you will achieve. Joining TC was one of my biggest accomplishments and with the support of a Team I finished my first half nearly 4 years ago. I look forward to training with you and for you to experience that thrill of crossing over the 13.1 finish line.
I am excited to be coaching again for New Jersey's Team Challenge Summer Season. This is my third season running with Team Challenge, and I have been a long distance runner for over 20 years. I have participated in 5K's, half and full marathons. I understand what it's like to be a runner with obstacles, as I have had Ulcerative Colitis for the last 15 years. I live in Watchung with my husband and two children. They are all very supportive of my passion for running and particularly my efforts to fundraise for CCFA. My daughter also suffers from UC, so we participate or organize some sort of fundraiser for CCFA annually.
Of all the races I have trained for and completed, the Team Challenge races I participated in have by far been the most rewarding and definitely the most fun. I particularly enjoy coaching. Helping our team members to reach their goals and enjoy the team spirit of training and race weekend is amazing. I can't wait to see all of you cross the finish line!
Team Challenge National Head Coach Dave’s OcTOBER TIP
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!
Team Challenge National Head Coach Dave’s FAQ
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.