This past weekend I was in Tennessee to run in the St. Jude Memphis Marathon. The Race was a joy, with the mostly flat course passing along the mighty Mississippi, past the blues halls on historic Beale Street, past the Gibson guitar factory, and along beautiful mansion row on North Parkway, to a welcome finish at the AutoZone baseball stadium. Along the way there was live music and plenty of support from the locals (including free beer at the unofficial rest stations, for those brave enough – or foolish enough! – to drink and run).

The highlight of the weekend wasn’t the race, however, or my sampling of the famous Memphis bar-b-que. It was my visit to St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital. Founded in the 1960s by entertainer Danny Thomas, St. Judes is dedicated to helping save children from live-threatening diseases, especially cancer. It now treats over 7,800 children a year, providing free treatment, and also free lodging, food, and support to their families. Its research division has produced new protocols and life-saving drugs in they battle, improving the survival rate of some forms of blood cancer from a heartbreaking 4% to a heroic 96%. Hearing this story, and seeing the bald but happy children in the kid-friendly facility was a life-changing moment.

Over 24,000 people participated in the 5K, 10K, half-marathon, or marathon this past weekend, but the important number is this: together they raised almost $10.5 million dollars to continue the mission of the St. Judes Hospital. To find out more about the hospital and next year’s race weekend, visit



About horowitzrun

Jeff is a certified running, cycling, and triathlon coach, and is the author of "My First 100 Marathons" (Skyhorse Press 2008) and "Smart Marathon Training" (Velo Press 2011). An obviously addicted runner, Jeff has run at least one marathon in every state and on 6 continents, including marathons in South Africa, China, Bangkok, and Antarctica. Jeff is available for group, one-on-one, and virtual coaching. Options include: 1. Basic Training Plan. This includes a customized training schedule geared towards a goal race, with a detailed running schedule that would include all distances and target times for each workout, including speedwork, tempo, and endurance sessions. 2. Complete Fitness and Race Plan. This includes the plan listed above, plus the non-running workouts and drills that runners need for better overall fitness and performance. You would get strength & core workouts, as well as run-specific training drills and stretches. 3. Virtual Coaching. This includes all of the above, implemented on a week-by-week basis. We review each week's progress at week's end so that adjustments can be made. The program is tailored to suit you right up to race day. It involves more contact, on a weekly or even daily basis. 4. Full Coaching for athletes in the Washington DC area. All of the above, plus a weekly workout together including speedwork, drills, and strength training. 5. Individual track sessions. One-on-one track-based workouts. Contact Jeff for pricing.
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