Grand Rapids, Michigan - Endurance Capital of the World?

Grand Rapids Gus
In This Issue
Upcoming Events

OCTOBER 20, 2013


Classic Rock 5K
Sunday, July 14 6:00PM
Rosa Parks Circle, Grand Rapids CLICK

New Holland Beer Run #5
Tuesday, July 16 6:30PM
Big E's in Midland, MI

New Holland Beer Run #6
Tuesday, July 23 6:30PM
Kalamazoo Beer Exchange, Kalamazoo, MI

Run for the Sun
Wednesday, July 17 Downtown Holland 

Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon
October 20, 2013
Registration opens December 15, 2012
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Training Opportunities

Grand Rapids Running Club Mentor Program
Train for the Fifth Third River Bank Run January thru May CLICK

Gazelle Sports Training
Pick your distance, Pick your race, something for everyone! CLICK

Borgess Run Camp
Train for a spring marathon or half marathon, or just knock off a few pounds!  Awesome program for our friends in the Kalamazoo area CLICK

Striders River Bank Run Training Group  CLICK

Marathon Adventure Boot Camp CLICK

July 12, 2013
Marathon News from
Grand Rapids
Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon
Groundhog Day Marathon

Sports Medicine at Metro Health
A long time ago now, I met Terence Reuben and Dr. Ed Kornoelje from Metro Health Sports Medicine. It's been a great relationship. From personal experience, they've been responsible for keeping me running marathons for a long time now. Terence is one of the most in-demand physical therapists in the business. And Dr. Ed, well, whenever someone sends me a question about some sports injury, I refer it directly to him. He responds rapidly and personally, and will get you into his office within 24 hours more often than not if need be. 
Lots of people go to a doctor who tells them to "Stop running," an order that will bring most runners nearly to tears. Not this doctor! If there's a way to keep you in the game, he will keep you in the game. Or he'll get you back into it really fast!
OK, there's my shameless sponsor plug! It is the METRO HEALTH Grand Rapids Marathon, after all. MORE INFO

My Grandma
This is a reminder--do what you love doing and enjoy life! That's what my "Gramma 'Lene" did. We had a great time last week celebrating her life that started the same year as World War I and ended two weeks ago just 16 days before her 99th birthday. (A little sad, but a lot of good family stories and happiness! How many people have a grandma until they're 57 years old?)

Certified Courses
Wow! Some of the long races around West Michigan are updating their courses this year. Yesterday I was over measuring the Park 2 Park half marathon course in Holland. It's a great half-marathon warmup if you're doing our marathon about three weeks later. Flat course, scenic, well organized. 
The Octoberfest Marathon in Spring Lake is reworking their course as well. It's another great tuneup race--while you're in shape for one, may as well do two, don't you think?
Certification is the key to being a Boston Qualifier. What that means is that the course is measured to USATF standards. It also means it's NOT SHORT. 
You probably think a marathon is 26.2 miles. (Actually 26.21875) It's measured that way, plus a tiny "short course prevention factor" which puts it a little closer to 26.25. And then, the course is measured via the tangents, which means if you cross the road or run beside someone or don't follow the exact inside of all the curves, you're going to run longer. Most marathons can't be done in less than about 26.4 miles. If you're in Chicago weaving in and out around thousands of other runners, you may even get to 26.6. If you're running a trail marathon, it's not certifiable in most cases, but they're rarely short. Especially if Randy Step has anything to do with it. 

Hey--Doug Bostian was just over and he's got a pretty cool event going on this Sunday night--the Classic Rock 5K. Info in the upcoming events column.

and the adventure continues....
Here's where I should be plugging my book, but instead, I'll let Jon VanZytveld with MLive do it.  CLICK
Pick up your personal autographed copy--Copies should be here around the end of July. CLICK

Summer Training Opportunities!
Gazelle Sports has some great training programs going on this summer with their Summer Safari program. Whether you're in Holland, Grand Rapids, or Kalamazoo, you can prep for your fall marathon with the experts at Gazelle. It's not too late to start! CLICK They'll also help you with your triathlon needs too--including renting wetsuits! 
Midsummer Madness Relay
Alan Martens, who does the Frostbite Marathon Relay in January is doing a summer marathon relay this year on the Groundhog Marathon course. It will be the official kickoff for registration for the 2014 Groundhog Day Marathon. Check out the Facebook page for details. 

Shirts and Other Cool Stuff


YES, we have shirts left from the Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon! Most of the men's shirts are gone, but we have lots of size Large left. Also, check out some of the other sweatshirts and other items. Pick up a couple more of your favorite training shirt on our website. CLICK

Marathon Adventures Bootcamp
Wow! Stair workout Tuesday morning and a tempo run on Thursday. It's been a great training week. Summer training is fun if you're hanging out with the right people! 

We're at John Ball Zoo most of the time, Tuesday and Thursday at 5:30 a.m., so if you'd just like to try a session or two, come on out. 

Jim has a great summer planned for us as we train for fall marathons. Hope to see you some early morning soon.

Cost for the full summer (Tuesday and Thursday June thru September) is $250. We'll also pro-rate if you want to just join us for the last couple of MORE INFO

Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon - 10 Years!

Our partner race, the Run Thru The Rapids 5K and 10K takes place on Saturday, the day before the big event. It's a production of the YMCA Service Club (formerly known as the Ys Men). 


The first time it was run was in 1970. It was called the Grand Valley Marathon. Over the years, it became the Run Thru Apple Country, and then finally the Run Thru The Rapids when the new Y opened in 2005. 


Service Club member Bud Baxter, (father of Syd, one of the current RTTR race directors) was cleaning out old archives and found the original entry form. It offered no price for the race, and even had a spot for out of town people to let them know if free accommodation was needed.  


Yeah. Don't get any ideas. 


Ten men ran that first marathon. 19 in the "Midi" 13 mile race, and a handful in a "Mini" 6.5 mile race. They met at the West YMCA on Leonard and were bussed out of town to the starting lines. 


It feels as if it has come full circle, joining us on marathon weekend for our event. 



Gazelle Sports

New Holland Beer Runs
New Holland Logo
Beer Run #5 Tuesday, July 6, 2013 at Big E's in Midland  6:30PM

July 16 - Big E's in Midland
July 23 - Kalamazoo Beer Exchange

New venue, venturing over to the other side of the state for a bit to visit our friends in Midland. Join us as we branch out farther from our home base. for a yummy taste of New Holland beer. Tons of fun for one and all.

Every beer run has a target charity, and we make a contribution out of the entry fees. Your entry also includes your first New Holland beer and some appetizers. Door prizes, fun, hanging out with really cool people. It's all part of the Beer Run culture. We'll usually feature both a long (around 5 miles) and a short (3 miles or so) course with each run. (The super-hot, middle of summer stuff we may go a little shorter though.)

Your first beer run is $20, which includes a shirt.  After that they're only $10.

So far...

Hey--it's been a great training summer! Not too hot most of the time. Nice.


Now, as you lengthen your long run, especially those of you new to the marathon, you'll notice new muscles you didn't realize you had. Your first 10 mile run hurts. So does 12. And 14, 16, 18, 20, ....


But then you back off. After you've done 12 miles, ten doesn't seem that hard. When you hit 18, then back off to 16 the next week, it's not nearly as bad as the first time you ran 16.


What you're feeling is your body getting stronger. You're allowing the AWESOME to come out. It's FUN. Race day will be even better. The next day you'll be able to walk, but you really won't want to. By Tuesday night it will feel better and you'll actually be able to do stairs without that stupid grimace on your face. After that, you'll continue to heal and feel better. 


But you get to keep the finisher medal forever! Bragging rights, accomplishment, officially awesome and loving it.


We're almost ready to order the race shirts. This is fun. Lots of good stuff planned for our 10th running.


I'll see you at the finish line in October.

and the adventure continues....

Don Kern
Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon | | | PO Box 1041
Grand Rapids, MI 49501

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