Kelly is back for her second season of coaching Team Challenge participants for the race of a lifetime at the Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon. Kelly is a mother of three children and works as a public health nurse. Running has been a party of Kelly's life for many years. When one of her children was diagnosed with Crohn's disease in 2011, she was drawn to Team Challenge. Mom and daughter joined Team Challenge in 2012, one as a coach, the other as a participant. Kelly has participated in 11 marathons, her favorites being Marine Corps Marathon, DC Rock 'n' Roll, and the Boston Marathon, which she qualified for and raun in 2011. She has recently been drawn to the multi-sport of Triathlon, completing her first half-Iron distance this spring. Watching the transformation of participants from novice runners to half marathon finishers--participants who share a common fundraising goal and many of whom suffer from Crohn's or ulcerative colitis--is an honor and a huge inspiration. Kelly is looking forward to coaching another team across the finish line in Vegas!
Erica is thrilled to join the ranks as a coach for Team Challenge. This is her first year coaching participants in their journey to the Las Vegas Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon. Erica is a mother of 2 children and 3 step-children and works in the Public Health field. Running has been a big part of her life for many years. Erica has run every distance from 5K to full marathons. She has recently been drawn to the sport of triathlon and is planning her first half-ironman distance next year. Combined with her love of running, being a part of Team Challenge is also very personal for Erica, as she was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease in 2001. She is really excited to coach participants in running a half marathon, but more importantly in raising awareness and money to find a cure for Crohn’s and ulcerative colitis. Erica is looking forward to rocking the strip with the team on November 17, 2013.
With the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon fast approaching, for runners eager to get into the thick of night time racing, here are 4 tips to help you prepare to take on the night:
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.