Whether you are starting out or have been running for years, our run group leaders will provide the help and encouragement to make sure you reach your goal.
Laura Jones – Laura is a NCCP certified coach who has been coaching marathon clinics since 2000, working with hundreds of runners of various speed, age, size and shape. A core group of runners have been with her for over 10 years, with a member continuing since year one.
Laura’s love of running stems from cross country running in high school, while cross training as a National swimmer. She then returned to running in her twenties when she ran her first half marathon with 3 lifeguard friends in horrific conditions on the Stanley Park seawall.
Laura’s first marathon was in 2001 as part of her initial Ironman Canada experience. She has since run a total of 12 marathons, taking runners to NYC, Big Sur, Edinburgh Scotland, Annecy France, Eugene, Portland, and Victoria.
Run clinic members often comment on hearing Laura’s booming voice both on course and reverberating in their minds, sending positive messages.
Laura’s knowledge for coaching and passion to motivate others stems from her degrees in Psychology and Education. Nothing pleases her more than the satisfaction of her runners achieving their goals.
Half Marathon Leaders
Walter (1:50 – 1:55 half marathon leader) – Walter says “if I run I can drink beer”. Walter’s wife says “if you drink beer you must run” (to keep the weight off). A classic case of he says, she says! Walter enjoys the great fun of the Jogger Lager including some of the conditions of the people at the end of the run. (Do we see a theme here?) Walter’s favourite but one of his toughest race is the Comrades Ultra Marathon in South Africa.
Richard (1:50 – 1:55 half marathon leader) After Rob’s father passed away ten years ago, he made a commitment to change the path his life was going. He had always thought about doing a triathlon and felt that would be the time to do it. After two sessions, he found the time and dedication needed to compete in a triathlon was too much while trying to raise two young and active kids. He enjoyed running with Laura in between tri-sessions that he decided to continue solely down that route. His favourite race is the Half-Corked Marathon!
Alex (1:50 half marathon leader) – Alex started running about 14 years ago with another clinic but it wasn’t the right fit for him. He switched to the North Shore Lions and he was hooked. “They feel like part of my family.” Alex loves being a leader and takes pride in what he does. It gave him great joy to carry the torch in the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics. His favourite races include the Vancouver Half Marathon and the Eastside 10k.
Nancy (2:10 to 2:20 half marathon leader) Nancy has been running with the gang since 2008. She has competed in marathons and half-marathons around the world, including New Zealand, Australia and France. Her biggest challenge was Boston. Nancy loves the feeling of camaraderie that comes with the Lions, everyone lending support and encouragement to all members. It’s the group that keeps her coming back year after year. She also loves to see new comers set a goal, do the training and feel the pride when they achieve what they set out to do.
Full Marathon Leaders
Mike (3:30 marathon leader) – After watching the Eco-Challenge, Mike decided that adventure racing would be a blast…and it was! However, he found out the wasn’t very fit so a friend coerced him into joining North Shore Lions. That was 17 years ago. Mike not only enjoys running on the road but on trails as well. His favourite race is the Volcanic 50, a rugged and challenging 50k+ event circumnavigating Mt. St. Helens. You can find Mike enjoying a cold pint after the race and sometimes during! (Think Jogger Lager!)
Simon (3:30 – 3:40 marathon leader)
Jo (3:30 – 3:45 marathon leader) – Jo has lost count of the number of marathons she’s run! Trail running is more her passion these days but she loves the running atmosphere, the social aspect of the Lions group and helping out where she can. When asked to share a Lions story she said “what happens in run club stays in run club!”
Kelly (3:40 – 3:50 marathon leader) – Kelly first got into running when she returned home after back packing the world post university. Her dad said to her “want to come for a run with me?” She answered “hahahahaha who are you kidding” and his response was even more ridiculous: “in May you and I are going to run the Vancouver marathon.” And, they did! She ran her first marathon together with him and it is a memory she holds very dear to her heart. The reason Kelly runs with the Lions is explained in the very well-known quote “friends are family you choose.” Jokes, tears, negotiating life and road trips are only some of the many highlights with her run family.
Bitsy (3:40 – 3:50 marathon leader)
Sandy (3:50 – 4:00 marathon leader) – Sandy has always been a runner but began her road racing career as a Sun Run participant for several years, graduating to a half-marathon followed by a full. Since that time, she has successfully completed several marathons including Vancouver, Surrey, Portland, Eugene, New York, Chicago, Boston, Washington, DC and most recently Austin, Texas. The highlight was participating in the B2B when she ran the Boston and the Big Sur Marathons six days apart! Sandy joined our run club in 2010 and loves the camaraderie of the group – it is what inspires her on those dark and rainy days!
Pat L (4:00 – 4:10 marathon leader) – Pat is our costumer! (No, that’s not a typo.) Pat has us running around in themed attire whether it’s pyjama day, Easter, St. Patrick’s Day, Christmas and/or Halloween. Pat is always looking out over the entire NSL run family as well as her own pace group to ensure we’re always having fun.
Patty (4:10 – 4:15 marathon leader) – Patty has been running most of her adult life. She ran her first marathon 25 years before running her second! She is making up for lost time and will be running #13 in Honolulu in December and Big Sur in April. All of them are memorable but Boston 2015 with her daughter was extra special. Patty is also one of our resident Ironmans having completed three of them!
Alice (4:20 – 4:30 marathon leader) – Alice ran a marathon in the early 90’s and proceeded to bonk entering the last six miles. It was a sufferfest. Fast forward to 2011. She wanted to complete another marathon and figured she could learn a thing or two by joining a clinic. Boy was she wrong. She learned so much more! Alice has since run many more marathons and even ultra-marathons. She enjoys the discipline and the variety of the North Shore Lions marathon program to supplement her trail running.
Sandra (4:30 – 4:40 marathon leader) Sandra started with Sun Run 10k clinic then moved on to the half then full marathon clinics. After hearing stories from other Lions, she was inspired to run a number of destination marathons including the Tokyo and New York marathons as well as the Disney Goofy Challenge because well, she’s a little goofy but in a good way! Sandra often ensures no one is left behind on our Long Slow Distance Sunday runs.
Pam (5:00+ marathon leader)
Tuesday Night Leaders
Hassan (Sammy) – Sammy is fast, fast, fast!
Jo – In addition to being a full marathon leader, Jo is also a leader with Tuesday’s fun faster group.
More bios coming soon!