Running group now features branches in West Linn, Sherwood and Tigard

by: SPOKESMAN PHOTO: JOSH KULLA - Wilsonville runners and walkers gather Saturday morning at Wilsonville High School to prepare for another Sole Sisters training session. It’s hard to believe it’s been six years. But it was back in 2008 when the Wilsonville Sole Sisters held their first workout session for women. Thirteen runners and walkers took part.

Today, the Sole Sisters have a presence all over the south metro area, with chapters in Sherwood and Tigard, as well as a new West Linn group that met for the first time at the group’s Jan. 11 kickoff run.

“Hopefully we’ll get some new people this year,” said Jules Moody, who helped co-found the group with fellow Wilsonville women Anne Christler and Lisa Sequeira. “We had an amazing turnout Saturday, about 120 women, which is awesome. Last year we kicked off Sherwood and Tigard, and this year we kicked off West Linn.”

The Sisters opened their 2014 season three weeks earlier this time around, with workouts at Wilsonville, Sherwood, West Linn and Tigard high schools. The group’s plan is to host workouts at 7:45 a.m. every Saturday at those locations through the May 17 Queen of the High Road half-marathon that begins and ends in Wilsonville’s Memorial Park.

With workouts that slowly build toward the 13.1 mile half-marathon, the sessions will build in intensity as spring unfolds over the next few months. Then in May the workouts will taper off in time for the “Queen,” as it is popularly known.

“The training is specifically geared toward the half marathon,” Moody said, “and most of the women, probably 90 percent, end up doing the Queen.”

The group started on the basis of faith and fellowship, she added. And that hasn’t changed.

“Honestly, we all see this as our ministry,” she said. “We started as a ministry outreach from our church, and now our database has over 600 women in it. We all have a mutual love for encouraging women and fitness and connecting women together with accountability. We all see it as a ministry.”

The workouts are free for women of all ages and ability levels to attend, whether running or walking. There will also be Gear Up nights at several local retailers who sell shoes and other running apparel. It’s never too late to join. There's also no need to sign up, so simply show up at the next training session and start the ball rolling.


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