Women, learn everything you need to know to become a runner. The NCRC Women’s Beginner Running Program is a 10 week program that prepares you to run 5K in the NCRC Women’s Distance Festival in late September.
This 10 week program is designed for women who have never run and would like to complete a 5k race or just run for fun. Women who ran at one time, and would like to start a running program again are also welcome to join. The purpose of the program is to introduce women to the sport of fitness running as a life-long activity. There will be four group runs available a week.
This year we are going to have “Timed Per Minute Mile” pace groups. We will be performing a 1/4 mile pace test at the initiation meetings to determine which group you will be in.
This year’s program is led by Terri Dowd, a graduate of the Women’s Beginner Running Program who has gone on to complete multiple 5Ks, 10Ks, and half marathons. You can reach Terri by email firstname.lastname@example.org
How the Women’s Beginner Running Program Began
Did you know that in 1998 women made up only 39% of the finishers in timed road races and in 2006, it had grown to 52%? (From: 2007 State of the Sport) Did you also know that in 1998 there were no beginner running classes in the Raleigh area except for the NCRC Women’s Beginner Running Group?
A local athletic club got things going with a beginners running class and asked NCRC members to lead the group. It was at this time that the NCRC started their involvement with a running program for women only. The athletic club discontinued the program but a few volunteers from NCRC continued to organize and lead this very popular women’s only beginner running program. This was the original “beginners running program” for this area and the only one for some time.
For the first several years of the program, the class met twice a week and had fewer than 15 participants. However, with the help of the Internet, word quickly began to spread about the program and more and more women began to join. In one season alone there were 120 women signed up!
A women’s running boom had begun throughout the country. Soon, it was decided we would have to limit the number of participants in order to keep with the program’s motto that “No Runner Left Behind”. The program increased the weekly runs to four a week (Monday morning, Tuesday/Thursday evening, and Saturday morning) and we branched out to running in other areas around the city in addition to our old favorite Shelley Lake.
The target race for the program has always been the NCRC Women’s Distance Festival 5k Race, which was started by NCRC in 1994. Today many beginner running programs can be found in the Raleigh area offered by the local running stores, the Galloway Group, personal trainers/coaches, but the NCRC program is the only women’s only running program that we are aware of in this area.
The North Carolina Roadrunners Club Beginner Women’s Running Program continues to be very popular. The dynamic of having a women’s only group seem to be liked and appreciated by the women that have participated in the program. We have a loyal group of volunteer/mentors that run with the participants. It doesn’t matter how slow you are, you will always have someone to offer encouragement and support.
Registration for this summer is CLOSED!
Be sure to check us out next year.
(Many thanks to Georgia Hagen for providing us with the history of the program!)