Goodbye Rogue, Community that I Love.

By Jeff Knight

I remember the day well: July 20th 2006. I was sitting in a small dormitory in Wilmington DE, where I lived for the summer, watching the Tour de France. Stage 17 was a critical day. An epic day really.

Stage 16 was highlighted by a ridiculous blow-up on the part of Floyd Landis, the American hopeful for the GC at the Tour that year (GC = yellow jersey). Stage 17 was difference. On a nasty day with 5 huge climbs, Landis made a ridiculous breakaway with 120K to go. Practically motoring up the hills, Landis made back nearly 7 minutes on the day to catapult himself back into 3rd place overall.

Needless to say, I was motivated.

Unfortunately, (comically, maybe) we now know that performance was pharmacologically aided. At the time though, it didn’t matter, I was motivated.

At that time in Delaware, I was a bit overweight and definitely consuming more beers than miles ran but, for whatever reason, that day reignited a fire that took me to the place I am now in.


I grew up running. I never ran collegiately or anything like that but running is in my blood. My mother was a collegiate runner back in the 80s, and she instilled the routine early in my childhood. I ran my first 5k at 8-or-so-years-old. I ran track and cross-country in HS but my motivation for running wasn’t right. I left high school swearing I’d never run again.

And I didn’t….for a while at least.

For whatever reason, that Tour de France experience made something click. Had I had a bike at that time, I probably would’ve done that but whether it was fate or coincidence, I only had running shoes. So running is what I did.

Fast-forward a few years, a few half marathons and a few marathons; I had a serendipitous meeting with, one, Steve Sisson at the Barton Springs Trail Head of the Greenbelt. I knew of Steve from a Statesman article describing the then nascent Rogue Athletic Club’s pursuit of a USATF grant. We chatted for a bit, I wished him luck and then went for my run.

At that point in time I was already fascinated with exercise physiology. While I was a classically trained biochemist, I became fond of human performance research. I grew so fond of it that I finished up a master’s in biochemistry to pursue graduate work in exercise physiology, specifically performance.

In parallel to that pursuit of exercise physiology, I had begun to think about coaching. I worked as a teaching assistant throughout my undergraduate and graduate career. I liked teaching and to me, coaching was really an extension of that. Teaching a subject people wanted to learn.

Naturally, I cold-emailed Steve after our Greenbelt meeting. I reached out about a position as a volunteer assistant at UT, where I knew he coached at the time. While I had no coaching experience or collegiate running experience (two veritable prerequisites for college coaching), I sold myself as a budding coach with a love of teaching and strong knowledge of running physiology.

He politely (kind of) told me I could not coach with him at UT. It was a one-sentence email.

He did, however, tell me about a position with Rogue AC as an assistant coach. Clearly I had no choice. I had to take it.

Door opened.

That was February of 2010. Fast forward to 2015, I can authentically say the last 5 years have been some of the most amazing of my life. In that time frame I coached Rogue AC, helped start Marathon High, acted as training manager for Rogue Downtown and, eventually, lead me to act as the Training Director of Rogue Running. More importantly, I made incredible relationships during that time.

An End

As those 5 years have passed, I find myself entering a new phase in my life. A phase that would never had been entered had I not had the last 5 years. Friday, August 21st 2015 is my final day to act as Training Director for Rogue Running. While I will continue to serve as a Downtown Team Rogue coach, I will no longer act as a “the person that forces everyone to run up way too many hills on a Saturday morning.” Steve and Carolyn will take over Downtown training with help from Jen Harney, our CP Training Manager.

It is not clear what new role I will enter, but it is clear that I need to enter that role. I feel compelled to seek new challenges and new opportunities professionally. That decision, though, was not easy. I really love and have loved my job(s) with Rogue.

I am eternally grateful to Steve Sisson and Ruth England for giving me an opportunity to coach when I had no business coaching. I loved my time learning to coach Team Rogue with John Schrup; which inevitably lead me to realize my love for coaching adult runners. I’ve loved my time spent with Chris McClung, Carolyn Mangold and, most recently, Jen Harney as we’ve tried to figure out how keep Rogue doing amazing things. I am grateful for the time spent with Allison Macsas bouncing around marketing ideas, graphics and rolling t-shirts for the Austin Marathon expo. I am grateful for…. wow…. so many more. I’ve had the honor of working with so many amazing people over the years that there is no way I can cover them all here.

But, most of all, I’ve loved this community. Whether its our community coaches – who have a billion other things to do in their “real lives”, yet find the time to encourage and motivate others – or our community in general, that love runs deep. Nothing quite beats seeing the beaming smiles on a Saturday morning after the first 10-mile long run. Or the joy that comes from meeting a goal; whether that goal was a time goal, completing all of the Marathon Majors or, simply running a first 5k.

“But, most of all, I’ve loved this community.”

The craziest thing to me about this experience was it seemed like the more I put into Rogue, the more I got out. It’s true. I love hills and I am a bit of a masochist. Yet, whenever I’ve asked the community to join me in that craziness, the community never blinked an eye. (Shhh….I wont tell…I know y’all are masochists as well)

Whenever the training intensity was increased, it was adopted with open arms. Whenever changes or improvements were made at Rogue (things that kept us all up at night), they were understood and invited. Whenever we moved from the eastside to the west side (with a lot more hills), the community moved with us.

You see, all of us working at Rogue understand that Rogue is bigger than any one person. Rogue is rooted in the community. So as people in leadership positions have come and gone, Rogue has continued to do what its always done: change lives through running.

For that, I feel honored to be a part of the community. I feel proud to have guided the community. And whatever life brings next, I know I will be better for the experience I have had and will continue to have with this community.

With Love,

Jeff Knight

Former Training Director, Current Team Rogue Coach, Permanent Masochist

The Church of the Long Run

By Steve Sisson, Founder

There is this very peculiar ritual that occurs on weekends all around the world. Tribes of fools gather, or embark solo, to intentionally bring great suffering upon themselves. Many of these strange denizens of the road awaken at hours even Army Rangers and Navy Seals consider ridiculously early. This not a masochistic cult or a cabal of NSSI addicts; though “addict” is a term these athletes would likely, if begrudgingly, cop to. Instead, this is a celebration of the simple act of putting one foot in front of the other, over and over and over again; sometimes fast, sometimes slowly, week after week. Religiously. We call it The Church of the Long Run. The church I am a member of meets at 5:30 or 6:30am every Saturday. It’s called Rogue Running.


Call me crazy, but I believe there is something special going at 410 Pressler and 2800 Whitestone, just as there was when we were on the Eastside and before that at RunTex on S. 1st Street. Anyone who has been at Rogue on Saturday can attest that there is something magical about the experience of few hundred people gathering together to share their suffering.

To me, one of the truly amazing aspects of the Rogue experience is that much of what makes the programing so impactful was completely unintended. My goal in starting Rogue was to provide elite level training to anyone with the will and desire to stick to the six month, physically and mentally challenging program. If they completed the program, they would complete a marathon. The initial vision was towards results, even if for most in our program the result was just getting to the finish line. Along the way the commitment of serious, focused athletes of all levels coalesced into a powerful, life-changing community.

I didn’t realize before Rogue how powerful the group experience can be. To me, the sport of long distance running was always about a singleminded, lonely pursuit of numbers. Whether the focus was on the numbers at the front of your name (place) or the at the back of your name (time) or both, the ends justified the means. The experience of being a Rogue dramatically expanded my experience of being a runner and even of being a human. While there has always been the intent to foster community I have been completely unprepared for that community to become a family.


Each of these families are the direct product of a coach: an experienced guide who believes in the life affirming power of a running program, in general, and the unique opportunity the long run provides to challenge one’s preconceived limits. We are all motivated by further and faster. We’ve grown up in a goal driven society and it takes something very special to take us out of an acquisitional mode and into process driven mentality. I believe that it is this transition, from the “me-and-my-results” to “the experience-and-those-who-experience-it-with-me” viewpoint that is the difference between a group of people running together and The Church of the Long Run. To put it frankly, we all want “more”. We struggle to define what “more” is until we are sharing our innermost secrets with near strangers on a 20 mile run. Yes, it’s weird. Perhaps it is socially unacceptable. But we’ve all been there; and in that moment, on that long run, it seems entirely appropriate; necessary even. Our definition of family broadens beyond the confines of blood in the veins to blood spilled. I do not think the battlefield analogy is too strained.

What is this experience, and why does it affect those of us who have experienced it so strongly? I don’t know. I am not a sociologist or psychologist; I am a coach. And I know what magic feels like and the Church of the Long Run is absolute magic. On Saturday, September 5th please join us at Rogue Running to celebrate this magic of Church of the Long Run. If you are already a Rogue and want to share this and the impact the Rogue training experience has made in your life, then we ask you to invite a friend a friend to join us at 6:45am. If you are reading this and are not already a member of Rogue we welcome you to join us at 6:45am to see what it’s all about.


Steve Sisson is a beer connoisseur (read: snob), coach of Team Rogue: Dawn Patrol and the founder of Rogue Running. To pick his brain on all things running, drop him a line at

Shoe Review: The New Balance Vazee Pace, Metaphorically Speaking.

by Chris McClung

Your grandma’s pie. A snow cone on a hot Austin day. Deep conversation with old friends. A dip in the Springs. Coffee and a good book in your favorite chair. Your own bed after the perfect vacation. There are certain things in life that make you feel at home. For those who love a light, firm, and perfectly cushioned (not too much, not too little) shoe, the New Balance Vazee Pace is here. You can come home.


So good, she glows.

A firm, responsive shoe is a dying breed, and, even if you don’t know it, that’s sad news for the runners out there. The trend in running retail is to make midsoles softer and softer because that’s what sells – the plush, “oooohhh-aahhhh” feeling of the initial step-in (thats a tech term). The problem is that running in a soft midsole is like sleeping on a soft mattress, leading to a sore back. Your muscles and tendons are working over time to pull you out of that soft foam, which can definitely increase fatigue and potentially increase injury risk whether in your back or feet. Plus, in a soft shoe, you become more disconnected with the ground, making it more difficult for your body to adapt to what’s under foot.

Adidas running used to lead the charge with predominantly firm midsoles in their line-up, but sadly, they were losing the battle of the shoe floor (b/c it is harder to sell a firm shoe) and, thus, opted to switch to the softer Boost midsole foam. And while the current Adidas Boston Boost and Adios Boost are still pretty firm (thanks to the mix of Boost and more traditional EVA foam their midsoles), the shoes are indeed softer than their pre-Boost counterparts. Those of us like me, who loved the firm, poppy-fast feeling of the old Adidas line-up, have been largely without a home in the past few years. [Note: a few have migrated successfully to the firm, Mizuno options like the Wave Rider, Sayonara, or Hitogami but none of those work well for me personally.] After trying other options, I came back to the Adidas Adios Boost and Boston Boost as the best available options for me, but something has still been missing in my life.

“Last week I ran in this shoe twice, on back-to-back runs….straight out of the box. It could not have been better. Smooth. Disappears on-your-foot good.”

Enter the New Balance Vazee Pace. Last week I ran in this shoe twice, on back-to-back runs; the first run was 10 miles and the second was 17 miles. And, by the way, this was, straight out of the box. It could not have been better. Smooth. Disappears on-your-foot good. As I alluded above, it was like I had been on an amazing, long vacation and was reminded how good my own bed felt again. The vacation was great too, but boy did I miss my own bed. If the Adidas Boston 4 (pre-Boost) died and was reincarnated with a wider toe box and a New Balance logo, the Vazee Pace is it. Firm, light, responsive. It would be perfect as a lightweight trainer for anyone already comfortable training in the Brooks Launch, Adidas Boston, Mizuno Wave Sayonara, or New Balance Zante, OR as a speed shoe for anyone already going long in the Brooks Ghost, Mizuno Wave Rider, Saucony Ride or Adidas Glide Boost.


The shoe weighs only 6.5 ounces for women (size 7) or 7.5 ounces for men (size 9), but it feels like more cushioning than the weight implies thanks to the super light RevLite foam (which has been in the NB 890 and 1400 for a while). The heel-toe drop is 6 mm, which is relatively flat for those that like low drops but won’t shred the calves for those dropping down from the traditional 10-12mm drop options. The toe box is wide giving your toes plenty of room to splay and work independently, but it isn’t too wide for someone with a narrow foot like mine. Although I didn’t need to, you might consider going down a half size if you like a snugger feel in the forefoot. One other highlight is the soft, stay-tight, silky-smooth laces, which are often an afterthought on most shoes these days.


Them some smoooooth laces.

This shoe has similar specs (both weight and heel-toe drop) to the New Balance Zante, and although they are built on the same last, the two feel distinct. The Zante is softer, less responsive, fits snug throughout the foot and has an interesting “rocker” feel in the transition (which doesn’t exist for the smoother Vazee Pace). For those that love the Zante, the Vazee Pace might still fit in your portfolio of shoes, perhaps for your faster days.


Unlike the Zantee, the “tread” is discontinuous.

For me, the more-cushioned Vazee immediately enters the regular rotation for my easy runs while, also, stepping in for a long run on occasion. However, the Adios Boost stays as my trusty quality-workout shoe – at least until the original Adios comes back in January (yes, you heard that right!). At that point, my shoe rotation will be back where I need it – light, firm, and responsive all the way through… like déjà vu with my favorite comfort food. Join me for a taste. You won’t regret it.


Chris McClung is our fear-less leader at Rogue Running, our CRO (chief running officer).  You can find him on the roads, leading his Morning Show crew or chasing his kiddos.  Or, possibly, looking for the next pecan pie. 

Shoe Review: Wave Sayonara 3

By James Dodds


Today (errrr…July 1st, 2015) we got this big shipment from UPS and behold the Sayonara 3 was in it. Bus & I … you know Bus, Austin Bussing, former Longhorn, super fast, made the finals in the 3000 meters in the steeple this year at the US Championships and clocked an 8:38 PR …. Yeah that guy  – Bus:


You can see the fast.

So Bus and I were working together and before we put items in the system or place new boxes on the shelves we first “inspect.” We want to know what’s going on with the update before it goes on a customer’s foot. Bus’ initial reaction was that it looked “Retro. In a good way.” The mesh that forms the upper actually looks like those old school basketball jerseys from 7th grade athletics. You know the ones your coaches had you turn in after practice so they could “wash them.” Anyway, the holes in those old jerseys were a little larger and therefore more breathable. So our first observation included, “A breathable upper with a retro look.”


Retro, breathable upper.

Mizuno’s website calls the mesh, “Airmesh” and says, “it is breathable and cool and maintains a high standard of breathability and comfort.” Smooth move Mizuno! Especially considering the only complaint on the Sayonara 2 was the upper itself. And kudos on the retro look because you know how those Millennials are … Instead of moving forward, they like to reach back and wear mustaches and rock their “Grandpa’s hand-me-downs.” #LoveMeSomeMacklemore

So then we put it on and gave it the ole “feel test.” First thing Bus said was, “It’s definitely more substantial.” Jeff Knight thinks it looks like a “Wave Rider on a diet.” Me? I called it the baby Wave Rider.

Looking lean.

Looking lean.

Anything wrong with that? Absolutely not! I have put plenty of miles in the Rider and think maybe Mizuno was wanting to take the successes of the Rider itself and simply deliver a lower profile version. If that’s the case, then way to go Mizuno! Way to go! If that was not the goal, then what are you people doing? Only kidding …. What do I mean by baby Wave Rider? I mean it has a substantial heel that drops off into a flexible forefoot.



This shoe must do yoga,

The heel in both the Rider and Sayonara are both firm and tall. You notice it’s there. So when it comes to long mileage you definitely feel secure. But what you use it for is your call. If you like to race marathons and half marathons in the Adios, Cloud Racer, NB 1400, or Go Mebs, then the Sayonara 3 could be a fantastic long run shoe that provides a lift in the heel and therefore rest for the Achilles. On the flip side, if you spend most of your miles in a Ghost, Ride, Glide, Rider, or Strada then the Sayonara will be your next quality workout/racing shoe. So again, it depends on what you use them for … but before we leave the “feel test” category can I make another comment? Yeah, I can because I am writing this damn review so deal with it!

So Mizuno’s insert actually feels quite nice. It has a “gel-like” feel when you first step in. But anyone who runs in Mizunos knows that they are traditionally firmer due to the wave plate. You eventually bump up against a small piece a plastic that gives you are firmer and more responsive feel. So they have done a great job with the insole because it makes for a comfy/soft step-in feel while maintaining the traditional responsiveness of a Mizuno.



In addition, the tongue is “puffy.” Sorry, I couldn’t think of a better adjective. It is soft and puffy. Cozy, if you will. That’s a good thing. No on wants the tongue of a shoe slipping around on you. Anyway, let’s move on to a better thought.

When I showed it to Chris McClung he said it reminded him of the Mizuno Wave Precision which hasn’t been around since like 2012 (how does this guy remember that stuff?). He has a point. This rendition definitely feels like Mizuno is saying, “Hey, guys, sorry we had it right and then we changed it. Now we are getting right back to … right!” Does history matter though? Not now. All that matters is that they got it right. And yes, I am saying, “They got it right!” The Sayonara 3 is #right and #solid. (Yes that’s a hashtag … two of them!). This shoe is in the same category as the Launch 2. It has a slightly firmer and more responsive feel but very similar in style and function. Their heel to toe drops are similar, falling somewhere between 10-12 mm but the Launch actually weighs slightly more. We’re only talking .4 – .6 ounces difference but nonetheless there is a difference. Mizuno’s website list the weight as 8.4 oz but I am never sure which size & style that refers to so I weighed the Men’s Launch 2 size 11.5 in at 11 oz even and the Men’s Wave Sayonara 3 size 11.5 at 10.4 oz. So in reference to another, the Sayonara is slightly lighter than the Brook’s Launch 2 and just a tad bit heavier than the NB Zante. So we did all we could to “feel them out” and in the end they passed the test. But our final thought was on price.

No one wants to find a Zante or Launch alternative and then have to pay twice as much. So Bus double-checked the price and sure enough they come in appropriately. At $110 they are only $10 more than a Zante & Launch but $10 -$20 cheaper than a Boracay, Adios, or Clifton.

In conclusion, we find the Sayonara 3 to be a lightweight neutral trainer that passes the test. It has a comfy step-in feel that delivers the traditional responsiveness of the Mizuno family line-up. It’s retro look is sure to please your uncle Joe who ran before running was cool and your cousin Jake who has a mustache and thinks he is bringing running back. It stands up against the Launch 2 & the Zante but best of all it doesn’t break the bank. Coming in at $110 the light weight, neutral, retro looking, baby Wave Rider A.K.A. Wave Sayonara 3 is


11048612_10205148707529826_3643628134334924916_nJames Dodds is the Rogue Downtown Assistant Manager. He’s a thinker, may have missed his call as a preacher and, fortunately for him, has a pretty awesome wife. You can catch him on the floor downtown or on the road with his crew, Bods by Dodds. He primarily speaks in hashtags. #also

Originally posted on Rogue AC:

Attribution Theory/An Open Thank You Letter to Rogue

By: Austin “the Bus” Bussing

A little over a week has passed since the conclusion of the 2015 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships (hereafter abbreviated as USAs). I had the time of my life in Eugene, met some great people, learned a lot about myself, and ran a couple of good races as well- finishing 12th in my first ever US steeplechase final with a PR of 8:38. In the afterglow of my experience at USAs, I’ve done a lot of thinking about how I arrived at this point in my life- where I seem to be poised on the precipice of accomplishing goals that once existed only in my imagination. Through this introspection, I keep coming back to my feeling of immense gratitude towards the Rogue Running community. It is this community, this nurturing network of incredible individuals that…

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Shoe Review (and an Ode’ to Nike): Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 32

By Adam Waldum

Rogue Family,

I write to you today because I am worried about you. Worried that you might be scared to try something. I am deeply concerned you are missing out on much better running. But sit down and listen here because I am about to dish out some knowledge for your running brains.

Throughout my 4 years at Rogue, I have tried hundreds of shoes, felt all of the new technology, and heard multiple sales pitches from companies in the industry. I always joke that this is the only job I’ve ever had, and I’ve been running since I was 7. There are a lot of miles on these legs and knowledge in this brain, so hear me out!

A lot of times I’ll have a customer come in the store and pose the question, “So what shoe do you run in?” or “What brand of shoes do you think is best?” Now as a person who is trying to help you and always act in your best interest, I do my best to hold back my bias on this question. What’s right or best for me might not be best for you. But if I gave my honest answer every time, it would be simple: Nike.

The original running brand.

I know that Nike doesn’t always have the best reputation. A lot of people have an image of Nike as “the man”, cheap, poorly built, style-obsessed, money-obsessed, evil, or against their religion. For such people, we will take a bit of a history lesson.

Nike: A Brief History

The enormous sporting goods company we call Nike, (and if you say “Nike” like “bike”, get outta here!) was first introduced to the world in the 60’s under the name Blue Ribbon Sports. After initial success selling a Japanese running shoe called the Tiger (still with us in the form of a little company called ASICS), a team fronted by co-founders Phil Knight and Bill Bowerman (world famous coach of the world’s most famous runner, Steve Prefontaine), created the Nike name and “Swoosh” logo in 1971. Since then, Nike has been on a non-stop ride to the top, and the Swoosh is easily the most recognized logo in athletic wear.


Photo courtesy of

A marketing powerhouse. Futuristic ideal and design. A passion for helping the everyday athlete have access to the same gear the best athletes in the world have. (Nike is by far the biggest sponsor of professional runners in the US.) And yet there is still this notion that Nike doesn’t make quality running shoes. Good grief!

Long before Air Jordans were a thing, they started this monstrosity of a company by EXCLUSIVELY carrying running shoes.

“But the Nikes I had fell apart and hurt my foot like really badly!”

Fair argument…maybe. Tell me the model and how much you paid for those bad boys, and we might find that you bought those bottom-of-the-ladder “fitness” shoes off a rack at a big box store. Sure, they might say “running” on the box, but are they a part of the top-tier running line that Nike carries? Nope.

Nike shoes are available nearly everywhere, and there are a lot of crap shoes with a “swoosh” slapped on the side. I’m not arguing for those. I’m talking about those brand new, fresh off the block, cover your eyes because they’re badder than bad, Nike running shoes.

I have run in Nike shoes for the majority of my running “career” but it wasn’t until recently that I really committed to going all in with the brand. Working at Rogue gives me the ability to try many shoes and get an inside look at many brands. Now as I progress and really see myself running faster, I always look for the most competitive shoe. And hands down, any pair of Nike shoes that I have run in have been more durable and always on top of the latest and greatest technology.

Okay Adam get to the point.

Alright alright alright.

The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 32

Everybody on the Rogue Running staff knows how much I love Nike, and specifically our primary Nike offering, the Pegasus. First released in 1983, this rock star has been around an unprecedented 32 years! Throughout that time, the “Peg’s” combination of cushion, durability, responsiveness, and value have made it a top seller. With the release of version 32 on June 1st, I see the Peg continuing to dominate in Nike’s original market: run specialty.


Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 32 in all of their glory. Look at that sexy upper.


The Pegasus 32 keeps the springiness and lighter weight of the 31, but brings in a newly designed upper that features Nike’s righteous mesh wrapped with the always sexy Flywire…oh yeah. With a 10mm drop, the Peg won’t please those peeps that crave a barefoot run, but hot damn this midsole is responsive. It gives you enough cushion for your longest runs and some spring for those faster days. You can kiss those clunky-looking trainers goodbye because the Peg is a very cushioned shoe with that sleek look of a lightweight trainer. Oh and did I mention the durability?? The rubber on this thing is outstanding. I’m not sure why the other companies in the running industry give us shoes with rubber that crumbles on the roads, but the Pegasus is always on point with the “waffle” outsole.

Look for the 32nd generation of this shoe to dominate the roads with this great update that will surely feature a rainbow of color options. I’m more than excited to try out this piece of art, and I invite you to come in the store to try a pair on. Trust me, give them a shot and you will want to come over to “The Darkside”, or as I prefer, “Team Swoosh”. See you soon, Rogue family!

Adam out.

10256887_233174246874543_7249739925526575397_nAdam Waldum is a student, lifelong runner, and a member of the Rogue Cedar Park retail team since the store opened in 2011. He primarily focuses on distances from 1500 meters to 10K, but he tried his hand at the long stuff this year and ended up 5th overall at the Austin Marathon (wearing Nike, of course). He’s a major sports fan with California roots (Dodgers, 49ers, Lakers), and his life goals are to travel and end up in your GQ magazine. When he’s not at work or school, you can find him pounding the trails at Brushy Creek. ALWAYS CHASING THE ZEN.

A Native’s Defense of the Dallas Marathon

By: Robyn Rogers

I am proud.  I am Dallas.
I wear mascara and jewelry to run my marathons.
I am proud.  I am Dallas.
And my Daddy helped me write my paper.

robyn and dad 2

My dad and me

I realize that there’s been a recent name change to “Metro PCS Dallas Marathon”, but to us natives, Dallas’s premiere race will always be the “White Rock Marathon”.  Born and raised in the heart of Dallas just minutes from White Rock Lake, my first memories of the Dallas Marathon are from the early 1990’s, watching my Dad run it.

Since the race is always in the first part of December, my family had a tradition:  as soon as my dad got home from the marathon, my parents, my brother and I would all go out and buy a Christmas tree. (You didn’t use your ARMS running a marathon, did you?

And why SIT after 26.2 when we could be making the house merry and bright??)
And for most of my childhood, that was it. I played soccer and ran some short distance track events back then, but I was just never interested in running long distances. I was fully content with my spectator/decorator role! I really didn’t even know anyone that ran for fun, except my dad.

Then, I married a marathoner. Suddenly I was completely surrounded by distance runners. In the spirit of family togetherness, I increased my mileage and got some half marathons under my belt. Even then, it wasn’t until 2012 that I committed to Dallas as my first marathon.

It was muggy and warm and humid the whole way. There were first-marathon jitters, an upset tummy, and a lot of walking. It’s hard knowing your Dad finished an hour and a half ago when you’re still drinking lukewarm Dixie-cup water on the curb of Swiss Avenue. Still, with friends and family on my hometown course, I managed to finish!
Getting that first marathon behind me was big – and I signed up for the 2013 race the day registration opened.

And then Ice-Apocalypse-2013 happened. Marathon cancelled.  At the hour I was supposed to be doing a little shake-out run, my mom was helping my 3-year-old slide down the icy hill at mile 18 in a turkey roasting pan. Cue minor detour to Houston.

I returned to Dallas in 2014 with much more confidence and better results. Still muggy, but no major issues! The Dallas Marathon is on my list for 2015 once again.
With its awesome downtown “Big D” starting line (complete with a huge video board countdown to race time), helicopters overhead for live TV coverage, and cheering crowds to get the blood pumping, the Dallas Marathon has all the excitement, atmosphere and weekend activities of a big city “destination” marathon.

Also, the course is beautiful. With a downtown start and finish, it goes through the Deep Ellum and Greenville areas and then winds through the pretty and historic neighborhoods of Highland Park and Lakewood. There’s lots of front yard watching parties and stages with bands.

Robyn Rogers Running - dallas 14

Running Dallas 2014!

I have heard folks describe the course as “hilly”, but since I’ve trained in Austin with Rogue for 10 years, I feel as if I have a few things to teach my Dallas friends when it comes to “hills”.

Of course, the big draw for me is that this is all in my hometown and only a 3-hour drive from Austin! I’m lucky that my mom can zip my kids around the neighborhood to watch me run at different points.  My brother walks a block or two to cheer and take photos and mile 6.  I smile when I pass the lakeside parks where I take my kids to play. At mile 12, I tip my hat to the building where my Momo’s real estate office used to be. Mile 16 passes right by my college housemate’s residence, where her 3 boys sit in lawn chairs with super-soakers.

The Dallas course is comforting to me – and I like that I’m done with the big work before Christmas.  You know, so I can go get my Christmas tree and be merry and bright. (But now I give myself a day or two to recover.)

robyn and james

James and I with our tree

Ready to tack the Dallas Marathon? Join us to train for this amazing Texas race or any other December races. Texas Marathon and Half Marathon training begins on Tuesday, July 14th, 2015. You can check out all the details for the marathon training program here or the half marathon training program here.


robyn at finish2Robyn Rogers runs and coaches out of our Cedar Park store, where she is well known for being the nicest person on staff and for bringing some serious pain to our training members at Core and FIT to Run. Prior to Rogue, Robyn was a high school teacher/coach and a group exercise instructor. She and husband James (himself an original Team Rogue CP member) have two kids that they are teaching to be die-hard Aggies like themselves.