Moms on the Run comes to HastingsWhen Tracy Yoder moved to Hastings with her husband a year and a half ago, she wanted to get involved and get to know other women in the community. Fitness was already a big part of her life, so naturally she started looking for some sort of local running club. Outside of a few store clubs aimed more at pushing fitness goals than getting to know people, however, she found nothing.
By: Katrina Styx, The Hastings Star-Gazette
When Tracy Yoder moved to Hastings with her husband a year and a half ago, she wanted to get involved and get to know other women in the community. Fitness was already a big part of her life, so naturally she started looking for some sort of local running club. Outside of a few store clubs aimed more at pushing fitness goals than getting to know people, however, she found nothing.
A wider search introduced her to Moms on the Run, a running club for beginner runners that had a group in Apple Valley. Yoder joined, and twice a week for five months drove to Apple Valley to run and get to know other women.
Moms on the Run isn’t just a social club, but it’s not your typical running club either. It’s aimed at women who have never run before, women who feel like they don’t belong in the running community. It’s a group for women who want to do something for their health, be a part of a community and enjoy the outdoors. While other running clubs train runners for marathons, Moms on the Run just wants to make sure its members are happy with their own progress.
“We’re focusing more so on how you feel when you walk away,” said the Hastings site head coach Susan Bezdicek.
It didn’t take long for Yoder’s passion for the club to grow. She was making friends, but they all lived in Apple Valley, and she still wanted to get involved in something in Hastings. She decided to approach the club’s owner and founder, Karissa Johnson, to ask if a club could be started in Hastings. Johnson liked the idea, but needed someone to be the new club’s manager.
At first, Yoder didn’t think she was the right person, she said, but eventually agreed to become the Hastings site administrator. The next step was finding a running coach. She found Bezdicek. Bezdicek has been a nurse for 22 years and is a health and wellness coach for United Health Care. She’s been passionate about running for about eight years.
Together, the two women will help beginner and intermediate runners achieve their goals. The group will meet twice a week at Vermillion Falls Park. Each session includes time for stretching and warm ups before going on a 45-minute run-walk for beginners or a sprint-jog for intermediate runners. Intervals are determined according to the ability of those in the group. The runs cover one to three miles on average, Yoder said. After, members can opt to stay for a 15-minute boot camp, during which they do light weight training. There will also be discussions about nutrition.
Incorporated into the summer running season will be a handful of races. The first Yoder and Bezdicek hope to get the Hastings group involved in is the annual Nick Clare run in May. At the end of the season, they hope to have the women in the group run their first 5K.
Yoder and Bezdicek take the approach that fitness isn’t just about physical training. It’s a combination of physical, mental and emotional wellness. Moms on the Run addresses all aspects of fitness by providing physical training in a setting that encourages camaraderie and social support to achieve personal goals that help each woman have a more positive outlook.
The approach is especially useful for mothers.
“There’s something just so special about being a mom and bonding with other moms,” Yoder said.
She added that mothers often are so devoted to taking care of their families that they forget to take care of themselves. This group helps them realize that taking the time to look after their own needs helps them to better care for their families.
While the group is named for and targets mothers, it’s not exclusive. You don’t have to be a mother to join the group, and mothers are welcome to bring their children – in strollers if needed.
For more information about Moms on the Run, go to www.momsontherun.com and click on locations to find the Hastings group. Registration is available online.