AMA Youth Run Club - David Thompson High School Style

By: Mike Horembala

We started the Run Club at David Thompson High School in a challenging environment. We are a small school located in west central Alberta. Our first challenge was location. We are located on a highway surrounded by farmland and gravel roads so we had a few options for where to run. We also wanted to run year round. Most of the winter we had two feet of snow in our area and the gravel roads were too icy to safely run on. 

To solve this we had one of the club member's dad show up with his Bobcat type machine to clear a running track around our school grounds. It was great to run on grass in January and February! The other challenge was with setting the important goal of a race in June to cap off our yearlong running program. we had to travel to get to a race. We "Googled" races in Alberta and somehow one of the students landed on the website for the 10km Sun Run in Vancouver (not in Alberta). They decided that was the race they wanted to work towards.

We fund raised and then rented a minivan and headed out for the May event. We went out a few days early to camp and completed a few runs on the Sunshine Coast. The day before the race we went to the Vancouver Aquarium and sea kayaked up Indian Arm. Race day was amazing. The kids were blown away being at the starting line with 45,000 other keen runners. It was an event they will never forget and hopefully a seed was planted for lifelong running. The next year we set our goal for the Loop for the Troops 5 and 10 km run in Calgary. It capped off another successful year of running and supported a very worthy cause. 

We appreciated finding the AMA Youth Run Club. Through the website we were able to see what other school groups were doing and were able to draw inspiration from their experiences. I also like the resources. Thanks to the very supportive and positive AMA Youth Run Club team.