New program will get people running


By Stephen Dafoe

Morinville – Although it may seem hard to believe with grass and gardens still covered in snow, spring is here and running towards us. Later this spring the Town of Morinville will lace up the joggers on a new program to get people running. The program will begin in May but the Town is taking registrations now.

Fitness trainer Michelle Logan explained the Learn to Run 5K program is designed to encourage residents to use Morinville’s trail system as the path to get started using walking and running as a form of fitness.

But non-runners need not be fearful; the program gets off to a slow start and builds towards a five km finish. “It’s a progressive type class. You don’t need to be a runner to start,” Logan said. “We build up and hopefully we make that five [km] mark at the end.”

Logan said the goal of the program is to have participants conclude their efforts by taking part in the Jessica Martel Memorial Run, an event scheduled to take place in Morinville during this summer’s St. Jean Baptiste Festival.

Though Logan will pack each of the weekly sessions with running knowledge, she recommends participants run three times a week to build towards the 5-kilometre goal. The Town is also planning a weekly community run program, which participants can tag along on. Logan is recommending a third solo or partnered run as well.

Nothing to fear

Logan said the Learn to Run 5K program is a great way to get out after a winter of being shut up in doors sitting on the couch. However, she hopes people will not be intimidated by the program’s end goal.

“Five kilometres seems like a very daunting thing to do, but it’s little bit by little bit,” she explained. “You just have to have faith in me. I’ll get you there. I think everybody has a different goal or a different reason. Maybe they just want to finish. Maybe they just want to do one lap running. Whatever the goal is, we’ll work towards it.”

Healthier community also a goal

In addition to the personal 5-km goal, the Town of Morinville is hoping to create healthier residents and a healthier community through the program. Part of that health is the mental health benefits of a more active lifestyle and the interconnections between residents who make use of what the community has to offer.

“To me – fitness is about a feeling,” Logan said. “I do it because I’m passionate about fitness. It makes me feel good and it makes me feel powerful. It’s however you want to take it. We have all of these beautiful trails and equipment, and I just want to bring more awareness to that and have people getting out with their kids and using these things for what they are intended. We are a family-based community with a lot of young families in this town, and I think we need to use those things to bring us together more as a community.”

The six-week Learn to Run 5K program runs each Monday from May 6 to June 17. Cost of the program is $48. For more information call 780-939-7888.

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