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Runners offered training starting next week

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USA Fit Shreveport will kick off a sixth season of half marathon and marathon training on Saturday, Aug. 10.

“It sounds like a crazy thing to do but everyone who has been through the training will tell you amazing stories of how their life has changed”, says the program’s head organizer Shelley Ryan Gray.  “Many people are intimidated at first with the thought of running 13.1 or 26.2 miles, but we break down the training into easy-to-do sections.  It is not only safe but a lot of fun.  When USA Fit members cross that finish line, it is an emotional and wonderful feeling not only for them but also for their coaches, friends and family.

Hundreds of people in northwest Louisiana have participated in the five years of the training program and people from Bossier City, Greenwood, Haughton, Keithville and Shreveport are already signed up for this season. The experienced coaches are looking forward to working with fitness walkers and runners with a special interest in supporting those new to a marathon or half marathon experience.

In addition to the regular Marathon and Half Marathon training programs, there will also be a Fitness Walker group and a “Double Half” group.  The Fitness Walkers will walk the Louisiana Half Marathon in Baton Rouge on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014.

The “Double Half” and Marathon groups will add the local Log Jammer Half, hosted by Sportspectrum, on Saturday, Nov. 16 into their schedule. The “Double Half” and Half Marathon groups will then run the Louisiana Half Marathon in Baton Rouge and the Marathon groups will run the Louisiana Marathon.

On-line registration is open at usafitshreveport.com.  $120 for new participants and $90 for those returning for another season. The fee includes 24 weeks of access to trained coaches, running clinics and seminars, group runs, peer support and a USA Fit Shreveport technical shirt. In-person registration is Saturday, Aug. 10 or 17, 6:30 a.m., at Betty Virginia Park on Line Avenue in Shreveport.