Welcome to Run Tampa, your new running family. There is just one thing we love more than running and that is the people we run with. That is the secret to Run Tampa’s continued success: We appreciate the incredible diversity of our members, from self proclaimed turtles to Boston qualifiers, young and old, beginners and veterans.
My name is Debbie Voiles, and I founded Run Tampa. I hope to meet you soon! Of all the great benefits of the Run Tampa community, meeting runners and becoming friends is by far the best part. Run Tampa is a family, and I kind of feel like the mom, or grandmom, since I’m 62.
Run Tampa History: In 2008, I started this website because Tampa needed an online running calendar. In May of 2010, I hosted the first group run at Al Lopez Park. Already a certified running coach, I soon started coaching, and in June of 2011, formed the Run Tampa Club. In July of that year we had our first social, and in December, our first destination race, the Jacksonville Marathon and Half.
Destination races: Since then, our destination races have included the Napa to Sonoma Half, San Francisco Marathon & Half, Chicago Marathon, Marine Corps Marathon, Spacecoast Marathon and Half, Maine Marathon & Half, and Grandma’s Marathon and Garry Bjorklund Half.
Leadership Team: In 2013, Maria Williams took over as head coach, and in 2014, I stepped into a mentoring role and turned over day to day operation of the club to our amazing Leadership Team: President Carla Nolan, Coach Maria Williams, Event Director Dave Yancey, Treasurer Joseph Bailey, Secretary/Merchandise Mgr Mabel Sciortino, and Membership Director Dale Posey. They are taking the club to heights I could never have managed on my own.
Run Tampa Coaching Programs: I highly recommend this track program lead by our amazing Run Tampa Coach Maria Williams. The Coaching Program continues to grow as enthusiastic members spread the word of their running successes: PR after PR after PR, but even more important than that, she keeps it fun and focuses on keeping her runners healthy.
Podcasts: About the time I published, After Your First 5k, I started the Mojo for Running podcast, available on iTunes and at MojoforRunning.com. Later, I launched a second podcast, the Beginner Runner Village Podcast. Between the two, they are downloaded 10,000 times each week in 162 countries. I get emails from all over the world, and do you know what I’ve learned?
A runner is a runner is a runner, whether it’s a newbie training for that first 5k or an ultra runner training to break the 24 hour barrier, we’re more alike than different.
Whether running solo through the woods of Croom or Flatwoods, running along Bayshore or the Riverwalk, sharing conversation with a clutch of Run Tampa friends or racing with thousands of others, running never gets old. I hope to meet you at one of the Run Tampa group runs soon.