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Mid-Michigan Running Groups

ALMA
Members of the Run 15 in 2015 Running Group, based in Alma, take a break for coffee.

Nervous about your first race? Having a hard time getting motivated to lace up and leave the driveway? Believe this: You’re not alone. Even the most active runners started from the beginning and needed support along the way.

One of the ways to find that support is through a running group. Running groups can run the gambit from a couple friends meeting weekly for a run through the neighborhood, to organized excursions with seasoned coaches and licensed gear.

“Running groups are the perfect way to meet like-minded friends and find new training partners,” said Cindy Erickson, of Team Playmakers. “You’ll  learn from others and benefit from being part of a group. You’ll do things together that you never believed you could achieve by yourself.”

Anne Markiewicz, of Jackson Run Walk, agreed.

“You can get support, accountability and it’s fun,” she said. “It gives you the opportunity to increase your speed and distance, as well as accomplish your goals.”

Healthy & Fit Magazine compiled a list of local running groups below. Each of the groups has a unique area, location and membership goals. Pay attention to the skill level of the members and whether they support walkers. And most of all, if you have a question about the group, don’t be afraid to ask.

“Anyone can join a running group and become hooked,” said Jamie Richardson, this month’s cover and director of Run 15 in 2015.

“Joining a local running group will help give you that extra encouragement and motivation you may not find on your own. Personally, it helps get me out the door each week knowing I have a group of fellow runner friends waiting to run along with me.”

Check the list below for information about the local running groups we contacted.

Williamston Walk/Run Group

This is a Williamston-area group of runners

  • Meet up: Meet in Williamston at 6 p.m. in the parking lot by McCormick Park every Tuesday. In the winter months, meet at 4:45 p.m. The group always meets on Tuesdays and usually Thursdays, unless there is a fun run.
  • Where do you run:  Williamston area
  • Group size: There are anywhere from 5-10 folks any given Tuesday night.  Some are walkers, some are runners.
  • Who can join: All levels of runners
  • Cost: Free
  • Contact: Theresa Grover at grover@msu.edu.  Cindy Winter at  thewintercrew@yahoo.com.

Jackson Run Walk

Jackson runners and walkers.

  • Meet up: The spring/summer schedule is not yet available. Check Facebook or meetup.com for details of current and future events. Click here. 
  • Where do you run: Usually Cascades Park or Parkside Track. There have also been additional locations.
  • Group size: Approximately 250
  • Who can join: All levels of runners
  • How do you join? Join the Jackson Run Walk (JRW) Facebook and/or meetup.com group.
  • Cost: Free

Run 15 in 2015

This group is for people living near Alma. The name of the group stands for Run 15 races, 1,500 miles, 15 miles per week, run a 25k (15.5 miles), run 20.15 per week, etc.

  • Meet up: Weekly at Biggby-Alma.Times will be on the Facebook page.
  • Where do you run: Through the streets of Alma as well as on the Fred Meijer Trail.
  • Group size:  Approximately 106 members.
  • Who can join: Anyone can join by being added by a friend to our Facebook page or by asking to join the group. Click here to learn more. 
  • Cost: Free
  • Contact: Director Jamie Richardson, Facebook

Playmakers: Any Distance Any Pace Team

Runners interested in running a long distance race or non-competitive  longer distances.

  • Meet up: Three times per week. At 6 p.m.  Tuesday and Thursday in the lobby of the Michigan Athletic Club. Saturday mornings at either Hawk Island Park or Playmakers Store.
  • Where do you run: MSU Campus and the Lansing River Trail.
  • Group size: Approximately 150
  • Who can join: Any skill level that can run at any pace for three to 12 miles.
  • Cost: $110 for an 18 week program. Price varies for returning members.
  • Contact: Lynn Duval via playmakers.com

Playmakers: Women’s Couch to 5K Program

This group is fitness focused with a goal of completing a 5K at the end of the session.

  • Meet up: 6 p.m. Wednesdays and 8 a.m. Saturdays at Hawk Hollow Banquet Center. The goal event for this team is the Komen Race for the Cure on Sunday, April 26 (see race guide).
  • Where do you run: Hawk Island Park
  • Size of the group: Approximately 200
  • Group size: Any woman of any age of any ability.
  • Cost: $70 for the 10 week program, includes the cost of the Komen Race for the Cure entry fee.
  • Contact: Debbie Richards via playmakers.com
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