Community Events

Beginners can join 5K running program in Pottstown starting Monday

John Strickler — The Mercury. Racers compete in the first-ever Pottstown Half Marathon, organized by the Sly Fox Track Club, on Saturday morning. Runners started in front of Montgomery County Community College on College Drive.

John Strickler — The Mercury. Racers compete in the first-ever Pottstown Half Marathon, organized by the Sly Fox Track Club, on Saturday morning. Runners started in front of Montgomery County Community College on College Drive.

By Michilea Patterson, The Mercury

Sly Fox Track Club in partnership with the Pottstown YMCA is starting a couch to 5K program Monday to help beginners train for their running goal.

Participants will work toward a 5K race on July 15 that’s part of the Pottstown Half Marathon weekend. Last year was the first time for the race and runners will have another opportunity to do the 13-mile distance once again. The marathon will be on the morning of July 16 and the 5K race will be the night before at 7 p.m.

John Strickler - The Mercury

John Strickler – The Mercury
Terri Valinote, left, and Sheri Reazor, right, pose for a photo before starting the first ever Pottstown Half Marathon race last year. The half-marathon was their first long-distance race.

Race director and founder of Sly Fox Track Club Chris Bayless said the 5K was added this year to get more people involved. He wanted people that were intimidated by the half marathon distance to still have an opportunity to run. A 5K is about three miles.

The Pottstown YMCA is the title sponsor for the 5K. Couch to 5K participants will be using the Y facility for strength training. Bayless is a running coach and teaches several classes at the YMCA. He will be leading the 5K program. Speed and previous running experience aren’t required to participate in the nine-week program.

“We do everything with you,” Bayless said.

Runners will meet three days a week on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays. The first practice will be at Riverfront Park located at 140 College Drive. The park is also where both the 5K and the half marathon will be held. The cost of the program is $65 but participants will get free entry into the 5K race on July 15. In addition to using the Pottstown YMCA facilities, runners will also learn about a variety of topics from medical and running professionals. Bayless said every two weeks someone will give a short seminar to the group about subjects such as nutrition, proper hydration, footwear and more.

He said another great aspect of the running program is that participants will never be alone. Bayless said the buddy system will be in full effect.

Sly Fox Track Club members run on a trail in Pottstown. More than 350 runners have signed up so far for the Pottstown Half-Marathon. Submitted Photo

Sly Fox Track Club members run on a trail in Pottstown. The athletic club hosted the first ever Pottstown half marathon last year. SUBMITTED PHOTO — ROBERT BOLAN

“Every runner that signs up will have a partner from our club run with them,” he said.

To find out more about the couch to 5K program and to register, visit the website slyfoxtrackclub.comor contact Bayless at SlyFoxTrackClub@gmail.com. People that want to find out more about the Pottstown Half Marathon race can visit the website slyfoxtrackclub.com/the-pottstown-half-marathon. Sly Fox Track Club and the YMCA are partnering up again to offer another running event but for children. On June 5 at 1 p.m., there will be a Dip-N-Dash for kids ages 5 through 12. Racers will first swim in the pool then change into tennis shoes to run a distance according to their age. The dash is the first in a series that will continue through the summer.

The cost to participate is $15 and includes a T-shirt. For more information, visit the website www.SlyFoxTrackClub.com or the Facebook page www.facebook.com/slyfoxtrackclub.

 

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