KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Trainer Levi Dodd began the third Ready to Run weekly session with these words. "Today, training changes."
Our group has expanded from five people to a solid number of 30 who heard about our training and wanted to take part.
As we started this week's interval training session, we realized our trainer planned for us to really amp it up.
We ran for five minutes, walked for two, ran for eight minutes, walked for three and ran for five minutes.
Most of us who are beginners have suffered aches and pains.
My problem was shin splints, until Dodd reminded me I wasn't landing on my heel and picking it back up enough on each step. Once I started doing that, the pain went away.
All runners in our group, including Star 102.1's Kim Hansard, my daughter, Kelsey, and several staff members from Volunteer Ministry Center are training to run VMC's 5K Run and Fun Walk.
We're running to help people like Don Foster. For the first time in his life, he is homeless. "Things just went down," he said.
Divorce, bankruptcy and job loss became the triple threat that landed him on the streets, where he heard about Volunteer Ministry Center's resource services.
"I'm already on my way to having an apartment, thanks to these folks here. They get me motivated and they care about me," Foster said.
"We help them get connected with resources that can help them get into housing, get their ID, help them get their Social Security card, their birth certificate," explained Resource Center Director Gabrielle Cline.
Those resources require a steady flow of funding. That's where the race comes in.
Foster is one of many providing much of the motivation we need. "I say run hard, get up and get going," he said.