I am Debbie Voiles, the RRCA certified running coach at Mojo for Running and Run Tampa. After well over thirty years of running, I recently ran my fastest 5k at age 58. While I enjoy competing in on and off road races from 5k through ultra marathon, as well as triathlons and urban adventure races, I now derive greater satisfaction from coaching other runners and watching new runners cross the finish line that first time.
More and more, I find myself driven to get more young people and families involved in running. Almost all races include a 1 mile fun run, and, happily, there are more and more people at the starting line of these races. When these new runners complete their first 5k, I can see it in their eyes, they are hooked. Soon they are doing 5k's and thoroughly addicted to a healthy running lifestyle that will facilitate their health and happiness for the rest of their lives.
While the sport of running continues to grow, there are still many would-be runners who are either too intimidated or who just don't know how to get started. That's why I started my Become a Runner program. It is designed for people whose current fitness regimen consists of lifting their favorite beverage and pushing the buttons on the remote control. Even then, some people prefer to walk; therefore, I also have a local walking program. I just really like to see people moving, whatever the speed.
With a background in teaching and high school coaching, Mojo for Running (and my local program, Run Tampa) is a marriage of my life experience, love of running, and love of people.
Over the years, I have seen many runners stop running for one reason or another, and more often than not, the cause is an injury. That breaks my heart, particularly since many could have been prevented with proper training.
I hope to help you stay motivated. One time when I was teaching high school English, one of my students said to me, "Mrs. Voiles, you should have been a motivational speaker." No comment from any student ever pleased me more. I guess my passion is transparent; that's just fine with me. Now, I have taken that student's advice, except I'm talking about running rather than English. I love to speak to groups about how they, too, can become runners.
Whether it is an injury, a busy schedule, or anything else that challenges your running, I hope that together we can get you back on track if your running has been derailed. If you are healthy and your goal is to take your running to the next level, I know we can certainly do that. If you are not a runner, and you're tired of watching from the sidelines, let's go. You can do it, and you will love the whole healthy, happy culture of the running community.