Playtime: Support a cause while meeting your fitness goals

If ever there was a time to mix your New Year health goals and supporting a cause, it feels like this particular January is it. Girls on the Run Snohomish County has a co-ed adult charity running program called SoleMates, where participants get training help while raising money for after-school running teams for girls which a focus on health and esteem building.

I caught up with Executive Director, Megan Wolfe, to get the lowdown on how the program works and how you can get involved. As a bonus, I got all the info on their Sneaker Soiree and the info on when to register for the next season of Girls on the Run.

SoleMates is a low-on-commitment, high-on-reward type of program. Joining the group, which has a $26 entry fee used to cover the perks, gives you access to training resources as you commit to raise $225 by getting sponsored for races. Wolfe has set up a lot of great training options and resources. There will be training plans for both beginners and those more experienced, as well as optional group runs and yoga classes offered to those participating. You will also get fundraising tips and a fundraising website “just for you” to help get to your goal, which was set as the full cost of a season of Girls on the Run for one girl.

While you can do your fundraising in any race you choose, SoleMates participants can take advantage of Snohomish Running Company’s partnership with Girls on the Run and get 15 percent off on three local races: The Tenacious Ten, April 22 in Seattle; The Snohomish Women’s Run, May 7 in Snohomish; and The Aviation 5K, May 20 in Everett. For more information on SoleMates, you can visit or attend an informational meeting Sunday, Jan. 22 at 10 a.m. at Experience Momentum in Lynnwood, located at 4030 Alderwood Mall Blvd. The info meeting will be followed by a “Yoga for Runners” class taught by my friend and favorite yoga teacher, Tracy Kim.

If hitting the pavement isn’t your idea of a good time, there is another, more food and drink oriented way to support them while have a good time. On Friday, March 3 at 7 p.m., Girls on the Run Snohomish County is throwing a Sneaker Soiree at the Thomas Family Farm in Snohomish (9010 Marsh Rd.). This is a great time to have a nice dinner and a drink, or two (each ticket includes two drinks), as you hear from both Wolfe and also Kelly Tysland, bronze medalist in hockey for the USA at the 2006 Torino Olympics.

Wolfe explained that the ways to support GOTR at the Soiree “directly impact the program.” There will be a giving tree that allows you to pay for things like a coach’s CPR training, medals for completed races, a coach box filled with everything a volunteer coach needs to run a season and full scholarships for a girl to complete a GOTR season. The Sneaker Soiree has its own FB event page, where you can find out more details, as well as buy tickets.

With all of this talk of how to help, I wanted to also give you the info on how to register for the next season. Their Executive Director let me know that “Spring Registration will open on Monday, Jan. 16 for most sites” encouraging those interested to register early so they know what the demand for space on teams is and can make sure they have enough of the volunteer coaches. For more information, you can visit or the Girls on the Run Snoco Facebook page.

– By Jennifer Marx

Jen Marx

Jen Marx, a mom of two young boys, is always looking for a fun place to take the kids that makes them tired enough to go to bed on time. You can find her on Twitter trying to make sense of begging kids to ”just eat the mac n cheese” @jen_marx.

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