Coach Blogs: Shorewood

Coach Blogs: Shorewood

The young ladies at Shorewood Elementary school really love the outdoors! They don’t care if it’s raining. They don’t mind if it’s cold. They don’t even notice that it’s getting dark earlier these days. They just love being outside! While running laps around the field one sunny day, Naomi and Caitlyn gathered up fallen leaves to make a beautiful bouquet.


On the rare occasion that the weather really is too nasty to be outside, they enjoy their school’s large gym. We’ve had great games of tag and timed laps around the gym. Here, Angie, Bella, Maria, Coach Lauri, Alyssa, Coach Carrie, Clara and Naomi give me their best silly pose for the camera.


We all had so much fun doing our practice 5k and Coach Lauri made it even more special, handing out glow in the dark bracelets for each lap completed. Alyssa decided to make hers into a necklace. Running with the sun setting on us, each of the girls challenged herself to finish strong.

Each of the girls has really embraced the learning process and continue to stun the coaches week after week, with their incredible insights and memories! We are all getting really excited for our big finale with the 5k on Saturday!


Coach Blogs: Ridgecrest A

Coach Blogs: Ridgecrest A

Ridgecrest A is full of sparkly rainbows! Best girls and best coaches ever! An especially fun time was the day before Halloween when coach Popcorn brought fake mustaches for everyone!2-600x800-225x300

Coach Blogs: Kent View

“I can say what I didn’t know how to say before.”

Hearing this from a quiet participant was music to our ears as we three coaches at Kent View Elementary offer the program here for the first time.

Mid-season, we’re attempting to assess our effectiveness and take advantage of every opportunity to attend to the specific needs of each girl. We find ourselves searching for signs of joy, openness, and confidence that weren’t previously apparent.

Coach Sara, Coach Kim, and I, are smiling at Week 5 and feel “this little light” shining in the girls. The message of the Girls on the Run cord is bubbly, bright and sparkling.

I’m also feeling the blessings of an enthusiastic coach team. Coach Sara’s fantastic silly dances and cheers are mood-lifting for all of us and create energy for the lesson.  Brilliantly, she came up with the unstoppable motivation of bead “lap counters”. 10 beads = 1 mile =a plastic “foot” pendant. (Available at At the Final Celebration, the girls will be presented with their necklace and the pendants they have earned throughout the season, including one specific to the character they’ve shown.  Coach Kim, also a first-season coach, brings incredible gentleness and warmth to our team. The girls swarm to her, confide in her, share their secrets and hug her so tightly I’ve had to break it up out of concern for her!

Another idea we’d like to share is our healthy snack recipe book. We are putting together all the recipes from the snacks we’ve made this season, including zucchini bread, cranberry rolls, vegetables and hummus and even homemade granola. The books will be given to the girls at Final Celebration.

We appreciate our parents, Principal Johnson, Girls on the Run of Puget Sound and our wonderful pacer Erika Larsen, for the support and encouragement. Have a great 5K practice everyone and we look forward to seeing you at the main event!

Coach Blogs: Catharine Blaine


We are heading into week 4 with the girls at Catharine Blaine and these girls have stolen our hearts and challenged our minds.  We’ve all agreed that there’s no way we won’t cry at the end of the season!  The very first day, one of the returning GOTR girls told another, “Girls on the run is about being awesome! I’m awesome and you’re awesome and we are all awesome!”  We hadn’t even begun our first lesson yet, so hearing that was validation about the positive impact this program is having on these kids.


There are times when we don’t think they understood what the take away lesson of the day was, but they continually surprise us when they make reference to some of the lessons in the following practices. A favorite that we continue to hear them mention is plugging into the positive cord.  And boy do these girls love to challenge themselves with the workout! We’ve seen running, walking, skipping, cartwheels, you name it. They have so much energy!  Some set lap goals for themselves before they even start and and some have already covered 2-3 miles! Something else we’ve been proud to watch is how many of them want to nominate their peers for the energy awards. They seem to really be taking pride in each other and they have come up with some unique ways of celebrating that.


So what do you do when all three of the coaches have the same name? Our girls decided they were going to figure out names for us and somehow over the last few weeks we’ve become Coach Brownie, Coach Peppermint and Coach Sparkle. The creativity and enthusiasm they bring every week is unpredictable and challenging and we are growing as coaches because of them and they are growing into true GOTR girls because of us.  We are all going to be beaming with pride for these girls on December 7th!!




Thank you, Coach Brownie, Peppermint and Sparkle for sharing your reflections with us!

Coach Blogs: Bailey Gatzert

Coach Mallory and I have spent two awesome weeks with our team at Bailey Gatzert.  As employees of Seattle University, we decided to partner with our Seattle University Youth Initiative to launch Girls on the Run at Bailey Gatzert.  Even though this is the first season for GOTR there, we already have lots of teachers and peers that come and cheer our girls on as they run their laps.  As the season progresses, we plan to engage Seattle University faculty and staff as running buddies in order to further contribute to the partnership SU has with Bailey Gatzert.

We have an energetic group that continually challenges us to grow and push ourselves right along with them.  In the short amount of time that we have had together, we have already seen so much progress.  The first practice, no one even wanted to run, and by practice four, they were all tallying laps as they blew by us.  While watching them grow as athletes is a joy in and of itself, witnessing their internal transformation is even more remarkable.   Lesson number two was all about plugging in the Girls on the Run Cord and it was my favorite lesson so far.  Every one of our girls sat there, eyes closed, and ripped the ugly cord out so that they could plug that GOTR cord in where it belongs.  My favorite moment came when one of our runners, Aidyn, yelled out, “my cord is purple, pink and super sparkly!” with a big smile on her face.  That’s what Girls on the Run is all about.  We may stretch, run and be teaching girls how to be healthy, but the most important thing is that they come to realize just how beautiful, special, and sparkly THEY are as individuals, no matter how far they run.


We are working with a unique population of girls and having the opportunity to witness them dispel the myths they have come to believe about themselves is truly an amazing thing.  These girls have come so far in just a couple short weeks; we really can’t wait to see where they are at by December 7th!



Thank you to Coach Mary Beth for sharing her reflections!

Spanish Website Launched!

Girls on the Run International just announced the launch of its Spanish microsite. This site was designed to provide basic information about our organization to a Spanish speaking audience. It includes our mission, history, program information, and volunteer information. This site is an important step in meeting the needs of all of our community members.
Please visit to check it out!

Announcing Higher Education Scholarships Available to High School GOTR coaches!

Girls on the Run of Puget Sound is pleased to announce the first annual Girls on the Run Spirit Higher Education Scholarships!  Beginning in May 2014, two $1,000 scholarships will be awarded to two students who exemplify the Girls on the Run core values and demonstrate a commitment to serving our community through coaching.
To be eligible, graduating high school seniors must have completed a minimum of two seasons of coaching for Girls on the Run of Puget Sound. Further details about the scholarship guidelines and application process will be available shortly.
We are thrilled to share this exciting news with you and hope you will help us spread the word to any high school students that have served as Girls on the Run coaches or who may be interested in coaching during an upcoming season! Please note: students (16 years or older) who intend to coach during the fall 2013 season must submit their coach application by September 10th, 2013 (extended deadline) (click here to find out more about coaching and to apply online!)

Lake Union 10K: volunteers needed!

What are you doing Sunday, August 18th? We are seeking volunteers to help at the Lake Union 10K, which generously donates its proceeds to Girls on the Run every year!

We need 10 volunteers from 5:30-7:30 am to help with registration and 10 volunteers from 7:00-9:30 to help monitor the course!

Email to sign up and please spread the word!

We need you! Volunteer at the Seattle Marathon 10K with us!

Girls on the Run is in need of 10 volunteers to help out at the Seattle Marathon 10K on Saturday, August 24.

We will gather in the early morning and either power up a water station or help with registration! Seattle Marathon generously provides all the equipment at our 5Ks, so this is a great way to give back!

Email if interested.

Coach Blogs: Woodridge

Being that we are Woodridge with a capital “W” we are the last team that gets to share for the blog.  But being last sometimes has its advantages!  We get to reflect on our whole season from the first lesson to the 5K race that we finished on May 18th.  It doesn’t seem that long ago when 15 girls were sitting in a circle listening to us talk about Molly and her vision.  Listening is the key, because for a few lessons that is what they mostly did.  But soon after a few of the lessons, especially plugging into the Girls on the Run cord, they learned what they are capable of and began to flourish. Soon it was hard to get a word in. They really came together as a team and encouraged and supported each other. They recognized the gift that each girl brought to our group and supported others in their challenges.

Each week we shared our field with the child care program at our school.  The younger kids, especially the little girls, were curious about what we were doing.  They would stand close enough to listen and would run with our girls when they did their laps.  We called them our “Future Girls on the Run” and our big girls did a great job of being positive examples. When it came time for our community project we decided to provide a special treat for our child care friends. We got together and prepared a trail mix and made smoothies for them and delivered it with some home-made positive cards for all the child care kids.

We had 15 terrific girls – 11 of which were able to attend and finish the 5K!  It was a very inspiring event for Woodridge, it being our first year participating in the Girls on the Run program. Our 4th graders are already talking about next year!  Woodridge is very excited be a part of this great program.




Pictured on the left are the fabulous Woodridge GOTR coaches!