What is a Running Buddy?
Running Buddies are an important and exciting part of the Girls on the Run program. Each girl in the program is matched up with a Running Buddy who runs, walks, skips or hops with her during two 5K experiences: a practice 5K at the girl’s program site and the Girls on the Run Community 5K at Magnuson Park. Running Buddies keep pace with the girl, ensuring her safety and sharing in her exhilaration and excitement as she crosses the finish line.
The goal of Girls on the Run is for the girls to do their best and HAVE FUN! Girls are encouraged to set their own 5K goals. For some that means running the whole 5K, for others it means running and walking and just making it to the finish line. Running Buddies are paired with girls based on their estimated 5K pace.
Mark Your Calendars! Running Buddy registration opens October 11th for the fall 2015 season. Check back here on that date to register!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the requirements for being a Running Buddy?
- Running Buddies must be at least 16 years old.
- New and returning Running Buddies must consent to a background check.
- New and returning Running Buddies are required to read training materials prior to the practice 5K.
- Running Buddies must attend BOTH 5K’s. This is essential for the girl’s experience of mentorship and encouragement.
Can males volunteer as Running Buddies?
Running Buddies must be female, unless they are a parent, guardian, family member, or school staff. We strongly encourage families to participate in the program and we encourage male family members to be Running Buddies. We believe that girls benefit from having positive male role models in their lives!
How often do Running Buddies volunteer?
Running Buddies attend two events: the practice 5K at the girl’s program site and the final Girls on the Run Community 5K at the end of the season. In total, this equals about 6 hours of time over the length of several weeks including potential travel time.
Where & when are the practice 5K’s and GOTR Community 5K?
Practice 5K’s will take place on Wednesday, December 2nd & Thursday, December 3rd, 2015. Practice 5K’s take place at the girl’s program site.
The GOTR Community 5K, where all the girls in the Puget Sound program come together to run and celebrate, takes place on Saturday, December 12th at Magnuson Park. The GOTR Community 5K is also open to the larger community. Family, friends, neighbors are all welcome to come walk, run or skip alongside the girls!
What are some qualities of a Running Buddy?
Running Buddies are fun-loving, patient and supportive, they enjoy spending time with youth and have the ability to run or power walk a 5K. Schedule flexibility is critical for this position. In order to accommodate so many kids in the program, we sometimes need to make some last minute changes!
Do Running Buddies have to run?
No, Running Buddies do not have to run. Running Buddies may be of all fitness abilities, but they do need to be able to complete a 5K. Running Buddies will be matched as best as possible according to pace.
How do I sign up to be a Running Buddy?
Follow these easy steps:
- Check to ensure you are available for both the practice 5K & GOTR Community 5K dates.
- Register online or contact the office for a paper application
- Complete all background check requirements.
- Read all required training materials.
- Attend the practice 5K and meet your girl buddy!
- Walk, run or skip her to the finish line at the Girls on the Run Community 5K!
I would like to run with a specific girl. How can I make sure that happens?
When you register as a Running Buddy, there is a place on the on-line and paper application to list your specific girl. Parents and guardians of GOTR participants will get the opportunity to register as Running Buddies online when they register their daughters for the program. Running Buddy registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis.
Do I need to register for the GOTR Community 5K if I’m already registered as a Running Buddy?
No. You are automatically registered for the 5K when you register as a Running Buddy.
Who do I contact if I have questions about Running Buddies?
Contact Vivian Syme, Running Buddy Coordinator, at Vivian@girlsrun.org or 206-528-2118.