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Program seeks to help runners in several areas

by Mike Nutter


(June 3) Some area residents got a head start on training for the Greater Clarksburg 10K Run on Tuesday, participating in the first session of a 10-week program designed to help improve race performance.

The program, held at 7 p.m. every Tuesday in front of the Clarksburg Fire Department, offers tips that range from basic running strategy for beginning runners to advice on injury prevention for more advanced runners.

And those on hand even broke up into three groups to go for a run.

"This encourages you to get out and run more," said participant Jim Harris.

"It's always easier to make yourself run when you have good people to run with, and causes you to work a little harder when you do get out."

Buzz Matthews, executive director at the Harrison County YMCA, designed the program that leads up to the August race.

"We offer three running schedules," said Matthews. "Whether you are an advanced runner or someone just starting, there are tips that can be very useful for the 10K.

"We meet here once a week for the class, and we give out a pamphlet on a program that hopefully those involved will adhere to."

Class members will run parts of the 10K course, helping them be familiar with it by race day.

But Matthews also sees a bigger reason to join the class than just preparing for the race.

"The biggest benefit from this is just getting people out here running," Matthews said. "A lot of times you get people who want to run, but decide not to because they don't have anyone to run with. Now some of these people may have found somebody to run with."

Also participating in the program is 10K Director Larry Mazza, who feels that the running clinic is a good start to the August run.

"There is no better way to start the run than to work with people like Buzz and (area running expert) Carl Hatfield," Mazza said. "To have people like them to work as a personal coach is a fantastic opportunity."