Wendy Georges runs. Georges runs a lot. The 53 year old Berkeley resident took up running 24 years ago and began racing when she was 42. Since then sheâ€™s competed in dozens of road races including many marathons and ultra marathons.
â€śMy favorite is 50 miles. It takes 8 hours. It feels like a solid dayâ€™s work- long enough that youâ€™re really glad its over but you get such a feeling of accomplishment.â€ť The female grandmaster of last yearâ€™s Oakland marathon aims for three ultra marathons a year with a number of shorter races as training. Georges races 9 to 10 months out of the year.
Georges with ultra running legend and BIW member Ann Trason
On Feb 6th, George ran the Jed Smith Ultra Classic, sponsored by the Buffalo Chips running club. Georges placed 3rd at the race flanked by women 20 years younger than her. Needless to say she won her age group. The 50k race headed through much of Sacramento and prepped her for the American River 50 mile run on April 9th. The American River race is a hybrid of road and trail with 31 miles following the Jed Smith course, 19 miles on trail, and the final 3 miles, a fierce uphill fight.
When not busy running, Georges has worked for the past 25 years at the Alameda County Health Care Dept as a social worker helping the homeless. For the past 15 years, Georges also instructed a cycling class at Ironworks.
Georges and Marc "El Jefe" Trotz at the Falmouth Road Race in MA in 2010. Trotz, the president of the Touchstone runners also teaches cycling classes.
Georges currently coordinates the indoor cycling program, working her 25th year as an instructor. Thereâ€™s an old saying that goes, â€śRunning can hurt cyclists but cycling canâ€™t hurt runners.â€ť Georges reiterated the fact adding that â€śIt really aids runners. Itâ€™s great cross training. Cycling is very good with running because itâ€™s low impact; youâ€™re not constantly pounding asphalt. Itâ€™s really good for the cardiovascular system and shifts the burden away from the overused running muscles.â€ť
Georges winning the City of Alameda's 4th of July race in 2010 as the first woman overall.
Georges spoke about the cycling program at Ironworks saying, â€śThe program at Ironworks is highly developed. It has been raised to a higher level. New people go through an accelerated process of becoming fit because the classes are so demanding.â€ť
Stop by Ironworks and catch one of the many great cycling classes that the awesome athletes teach.
Tags: Jed Smith Ultra Classic, Touchstone Running, Wendy Georges
Past blog entries can be found at http://touchstoneclimbing.blogspot.com/