Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

March 16, 2010

Participants sprint toward finish line

Contestants have just two more weeks to go

By Erin Shultz

When most of the Community Shape-Up participants walked into Club Fitness 24, they could barely make it through one round of their large-group training sessions. Many of them had never run a city block before.

But after losing 789.6 pounds in the last six weeks, anything is possible for this group.

And on Saturday, dozens of the Shape-Up contestants participated in the annual Old Ben 5K in Highland Park on Saturday morning.

Yes, that’s 3.1 full miles. But that was only after their Saturday morning workout with personal trainer Carlos Diaz and Club Fitness 24 owner Chad Coy.

Each of the Community Shape-Up posse seemed to have a different goal for him- or herself at the race on Saturday.

Kalyn Smith wanted to come in under 45 minutes. And he cruised in with a time of just over 44 minutes.

Christi Ratcliff wanted to run the entire race. Mission accomplished.

Joyce Webber did the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure last year and walked the whole thing. This time, she set out to do a mix of a walk and run.

“I did this one a whole lot faster, and I had a lot more stamina,” Webber said.

In fact, Webber took second place in her age category and walked away with a prize.

“Who would have ever thought I would have won anything?” she said with a little smile Monday.

Trina Phillips-Nelson struggled to finish the race and said she was surprised her teammates — who had already completed the race — looped back around to find her and run with her to the finish line.

“Saturday we were all one big team,” she said. “It didn’t matter what color your shirt was that morning — everyone cheered everyone else on to the finish line.”

• Erin Shultz is the Kokomo Tribune Life & Style editor. She may be reached at 765-454-8587 or erin.shultz@kokomotribune.com.