RunHers starting to hit their stride

Okotoks: New women’s running group meets on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m.

By: Bruce Campbell

  |  Posted: Wednesday, Jul 23, 2014 06:00 am

Sheep River RunHers Andrea D’silva-Siqueira, Sally Zerk and Rachel Crocker go for a run on the Okotoks paths Friday. The Sheep River RunHers, a women’s running group, meet on Wednesdays at Starbucks at 6:30 p.m.
Sheep River RunHers Andrea D’silva-Siqueira, Sally Zerk and Rachel Crocker go for a run on the Okotoks paths Friday. The Sheep River RunHers, a women’s running group, meet on Wednesdays at Starbucks at 6:30 p.m.
Wheel file photo

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Some Okotoks women are on the run.

The Sheep River RunHers meet Wednesdays to run and visit — with a pretty strong emphasis on the socializing issue.

“We often see people out running and I thought it would just be nice for women to go out and run together,” said RunHer Rachel Crocker. “It’s for anybody.”

Crocker said often women don’t feel comfortable running on their own.

“When I started running I was very conscious about running on my own and I would go at night so no one would see me,” she said.

“We have had some women tell us they are so glad we have this because they won’t don’t want to run alone.

“They like the club not only for the motivation, but the social aspect and the support.”

She also said safety is also a factor for women to not run alone.

The informal club meets at Starbucks down by Canadian Tire Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. The location provides quick access to the extensive path system in Okotoks.

So far, the club has had sessions with 13 runners and nine runners respectively since it started earlier this month.

The running abilities vary from walkers to Crocker and Sally Zerk, who completed the 50km run at the Calgary Marathon.

“It is just to encourage all type of women to come out and run,” said Andrea D’silva-Siqueira, who has run half-marathons. “They don’t have to be intimidated — no one is going to feel left out.”

Zerk said regardless of a RunHers’ ability, she is never left alone.

“We always make sure one of us stays with those without as much experience,” she said. “We make sure we welcome and ask them what they want to do.”

Running is practically secondary to the RunHers. They are just a social group with a running problem.

“The first week we stayed for about an hour (at Starbucks) socializing with one another,” Crocker said. “It was a lot of fun.”

Crocker, Zerk and D’silva-Siqueira have all run with the Big Rock Runners on Saturdays. Zerk said they encourage the RunHers to run with the Big Rockers, a long-time running club that meets on Saturdays at 9 a.m. at the Okotoks Recreation Centre.

For more information on the Sheep River RunHers go to their facebook page.

bcampbell@okotoks.greatwest.ca


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