Colfax Marathon Ambassador Program
Thanks to our Key Sponsor of the Ambassador Program:
2016 Colfax Ambassador Team
We’re proud to have such a great group of athletes helping us spread the word about the Colfax Marathon.
Who are they? Each summer, we select a group of athletes from a wide variety of running backgrounds who love running and are influential in their personal running communities. They will be helping us keep our runners informed, inspired and motivated. Keep an eye out for them training and racing all over Colorado, joining in your local run club runs, working with our many Charity Partners organizations, and on social media. Say hello if you see them out and about!
Alex is a guy who loves to run and motivate others. Alex has been a Colfax Marathon Ambassador since 2013, and he’s one of the hardest working guys we know. If you wonder how to stay happily employed, married and a parent while training for a marathon, this is the guy to ask… he does it all! A husband with 4 kids and working in product management, Alex has run countless marathons and 50 mile races. He has participated in the Colfax races since 2008 and will again run this year. Alex grew up in Maine and performed around the world as a musician with the company Up with People, and now calls Frederick, Colorado home.
Find him running overnight, blogging at ThoughtsOnTheRun.com, and @AeRoss.”I have a wife & 4 young kids yet still complete ultramarathons. Always looking to move the line of possibility for anyone!”
Mitch Dulleck got into Running 6 years ago almost on a dare. A group of friends were training for a Marathon and asked Mitch to join them. Having never run that far in his life, he signed up, completed the Marathon and got hooked! Now he runs longer distance races because he is not “That Fast” of a runner, but he has the determination to Not Give Up and likes traveling Long Distances!Mitch Can be found most weekends running Trails all along the Front Range, or up in his “Second Home”, Leadville Colorado. This past Summer he Completed both the Leadville Marathon and the Silver Rush 50. Trails are where his heart is, but he will ALWAYS be a Fan of the Colfax Marathon Race Series and specifically the Half Marathon that is one of the Only Races in the United States to Actually Run through a Zoo! Mitch is going on his 4th year as a Colfax Marathon Race Brand Ambassador, and thinks it is one of the Most Rewarding aspects of his Running.Mitch is Married to his wife, Kristal and has 2 children, Tyler who is a United States Marine, currently deployed on Okinawa, and Kenzie who is a Sophomore at the University of San Diego. Mitch also is the Assistant Coach for the Boys Varsity Lacrosse Program at Castle View High School.Look for Mitch out on the Trails locally, or at Various Runners Roost Group Runs!
Al has either paced, sagged, raced, or volunteered at the Colfax marathon or half marathon every year of its existence, except one. His first marathon was the Aurora Arbor day marathon in 1991 where he struggled to finish the last 5 miles but was hooked and has been running long distances since. This is his 3rd year as a Colfax Ambassador and is committed to doing his part to make this 10th year the best event it can be.Al trains with Mile High Track Club, runs often with friends at Washington Park and at various place along the Highline Canal Trail. He runs about one race a month at distances from 5K to marathon.
Allen Peoples had been an official runner for 21 years. We say official because Allen has been probably never stop running since he learned to walk. Rumor has it that that he ran home from school daily in elementary school so he wouldn’t miss his favorite cartoon. Allen was a short distance runner for many years and debuted at his first marathon in 2009 where he quickly caught the long distance bug. Since that first marathon he has completed 30 marathons/ultras including 5 Colfax marathons. The Colfax marathon is one of Allen’s favorite races because the weather is always great and he love the course, particular running through the stadium twice. Allen has progressed his personal best marathon time multiple times at the Colfax marathon. You can keep with Allen’s adventures by following his blog at http://allenrunsfar.blogspot.com/.
Allison started running about 6 years ago while in college at Colorado State because a friend encouraged her to do the CSU Homecoming 5k. Even though her friend bailed due to the awful snowy weather that morning, Allison crossed that finish line and felt an immense sense of accomplishment. Since then she’s run everything from 10ks to marathons to Ragnar Relays, with her favorite distance being the half marathon.The Colfax race is important to Allison because she feels it really embodies the running community of Colorado. There is a distance for every runner level, familiar faces are abound at the expo and the finish line, and the Charity Partner program helps solidify it as a Denver and Colorado focused event. The Colfax race series gives her a sense of Denver community and pride unlike any other race offered.One unique thing about Allison is that she was born on Leap Year Day (February 29th). Growing up she enjoyed the bigger celebrations surrounding her birthday every 4 years, and tricking carnival employees during the “guess your age” game. 2016 is her next real birthday, and Allison plans to celebrate it in the best way she can think of – running the Paris Marathon during a 2 1/2 week trip to Europe! Oh, and she also works as one of the engineers at a local craft brewery. Running and craft beer are two of her favorite things.Allison can be found on social media the following ways … Instagram: @Alli_Martz Twitter: @Alli_Martz Facebook: http://on.fb.me/1Uxr1UU blog: http://couririnthelandofbeer.tumblr.com/
Georgia native Amanda Edenfield is excited to be running in the Colfax for the first time in 2016! She is a newbie to the running world, having only started racing in 2011, but has found her passion and enjoys logging miles on the road. She is hoping to hit a new PR running in the half marathon while the zoo animals cheer her on! Amanda is a fitness instructor in Aurora and was recently a cast member in a P90X workout video. You can find Amanda on her blog atbephoenixfit.com or on Instagram @bephoenixfit.
Amber Swartz has been passionately running for the past eleven years. Running began as an inexpensive and flexible way to keep up her health. Over time, it developed into a passion and now with over eight years of group exercise instruction experience, Amber loves to share her passion for fitness, health, and well-being with others. She is currently teaching two classes for Denver Parks and Recreation and would love to chat with you at these: Power Sculpt on Tuesday mornings at Washington Park Recreation Center (8-9am) as well as Bootcamp classes at City Park. Amber invites you to connect and become Facebook friends at: https://m.facebook.com/swartza and Instagram followers at: swartza .Fun fact: Amber loves traveling and taking in new cities with a quick jog! Aside from U.S. cities, she explored London and many gorgeous cities throughout Ireland and Italy this way last summer.Amber loves the Colfax Race because it is such an amazing integration of the best parts of the Denver community. Many of her favorite shorter running routes- along the Platte, though and around the Broncos’ Sports Authority Stadium, City Park, and the Denver Zoo- are all strategically intertwined to make up this amazing race through the wonderful city of Denver while supporting over 190 community charities.
Anne Staeheli has been formally running for over 15 years transitioning from track & cross country in college to the ultimate 26.2 distance. She has run over 21 full marathons and that number will only continue to increase. The Colfax Marathon is a unique race for Anne as the first time she ran the Colfax Full Marathon was a few short weeks after Anne finished (her first) Boston in 2013. She felt the need to run a marathon after the horrible outcome at Boston that year. The people and support from the Colfax Marathon was truly empowering and gave her a run that put her back at Boston in 2014. The Colfax Marathon also happens to give her a new PR for the full every year, which is always welcomed! She can be found running over the bridge in Lohi bypassing Little Man ice cream. Follow her steps on Instagram @astaeheli
My name is Bobbie Hickman and I am originally from Decatur, TN. This is the 3rd year I have had the honor of being a Colfax Ambassador. I have been a runner for 19 years. I have lived all over the US (primarily in the south) and had never run before we moved to Colorado in 1996. A friend convinced me I needed to run the Cherry Creek Sneak 5 Miler in 1997. Needless to say I was much slower in 1997 than now.I love running because of the wonderful people I have met at races, running clubs, running stores and out on the trails. I love running because it can be an individual sport or a group thing. When running a race it is not based on how popular you are or who likes you. It is mental and it is me pushing myself.I love running the Colfax races and being an ambassador because of the great charities that it helps, the great charity partners I have met and the race routes that take you through the Great City of Denver.When running outside I will have on Colfax Ambassador attire so look for me on some of my favorite running trails – Waterton Canyon, Clement Park, Highline Canal, or Dinosaur Ridge or a local track for intervals, hills and speed work. Please feel free to stop and ask me questions regarding the Colfax event or if you have training questions I can help you with.
IT sales by profession, weekend warrior by passion, loves all things competitive and active. Has been running his whole life, but started running races about 6 or 7 years ago. A Denver native, Cameron can be found gym ratting it at most Denver parks and recreation centers. He started running the Colfax in one form or another, 5 years ago, and says it always brings a smile to his face whenever he gets to openly run through the streets of Denver’s beautiful neighborhoods. Cameron is really excited to be a first year ambassador!
Caolan MacMahon is the Director/Head Coach at The Long Run Coaching working with elite and post-collegiate runners around the world, founder of Gazelle Women’s Racing Team and the Head Middle School Track and Field Coach at Peak to Peak Charter School in Lafayette. She been running for 40+ years and is currently an age group competitive runner in distances ranging from 5k to 100 miles, placing first in her AG at the 2014 Colfax Marathon (among others). She’s run Boston 3 times (4th will be 2016) and 2016 will be her 5th Colfax Marathon. This is her 4th year as a Colfax Ambassador and she is beyond excited and honored to be representing and spreading the word about some of the best races in the country.
Chris has been actively running for 13 years and has run all 10 years at Colfax; his favorite being the half marathon. His positive attitude and constant smile helped Chris recently beat throat cancer. What Chris really loves about the Colfax is that it doesn’t focus on one cause, but it gives many charities a chance to raise money. You can find Chris on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter
– Name: Christina Muccio
– How long been running: I started as a competitive sprinter and carried my love for speed through a division 1 college program. Once the shock of graduating and end of my sprinting career settled in, I began running longer distances. I have always found training to be therapeutic and races to be an absolute blast. I love the mental game of running and pushing your body to run distances you never thought were possible.
– Something unique about you: At age 11 I went to the Junior Olympics for gymnsatics. Gymnastics was the foundation to an amazing sprinting career.
– Why you love the Colfax race: Aside from running through the zoo, I love running down Colfax which normally is jam-packed with speeding cars. It is, for once, completely quiet and safe for runners to get lost in their love for the sport.
– Where on social media/blog/around town you can be found: find me on Facebook, on instagram and running around downtown Denver!
Darcy is thrilled to join the Colfax team! A native of Pittsburgh, Darcy started running when she moved to flat Florida while teaching and working for Disney World. Darcy coached high school cross country and track in FL and loves motivating new runners! Here in CO, she has coached for Girls on the Run. Darcy has ran seven marathons, nearly thirty 1/2 marathons, and also enjoys team events such as Tough Mudder and Ragnar Relay races. Darcy volunteered in Africa and tried to learn to run with the Kenyans but couldn’t quite keep up. Colfax is her favorite 1/2 in Denver due to the scenery- who doesn’t love running past lions, tigers, and firemen?
Darcy also loves the Colfax Series because of the amazing charity partnerships. Darcy has fund-raised while training for races since her first marathon, the National Marathon to Fight Breast Cancer in Jacksonville. Darcy is on the the Board of Directors for Women’s Global Empowerment Fund, which has a growing team for Colfax each year! She is also a Mentor for Team Challenge running to find a cure for Crohn’s and Colitis. You can find Darcy at local pub runs such as the Pub Run around Wash Park, Snug Run around Cheesman, and Highland Tap & Burger Run Club because running is better with friends and food. Darcy’s favorite running partner is her rescued dog who has ran a half marathon with her! Darcy will be sharing run club information and promoting the Colfax Series on Twitter at Darcy26_2
Emily is an Ambassador and also assists with our Athletes with Disabilities Program. Her role is to help us make race weekend welcoming for athletes of all abilities. Emily’s leg was amputated below the knee when she was 2 years old because of a birth defect called fibular hemimelia. She got a running prosthesis in April of 2013 and hasn’t looked back since. Emily completed her first half marathon in April of 2014, then switched gears to sprint distance triathlons. After a solid season of racing that distance, she now has her sights set on Ironman 70.3 in Couer d’Alene for June of 2016. Emily also hopes to qualify for Paratriathlon Nationals again in 2016. Emily runs with Achilles International every Monday night and she’s the President and co-founder of LIM359, which is an activities group for people with limb loss and limb difference. Emily will also be featured in a forthcoming series called She’s Got Grit.“A person has two legs and one sense of humor, and if you’re faced with the choice, it’s better to lose a leg.” – Charles Lindner
“I love Colfax because of the way it brings the whole community together, including members of the community who might only participate in one athletic event per year.”
twitter: @emharv84 Instagram: emharv8
Jamie Schutte started running at five years old. She competed through high school playing competitive soccer, cross-country, and track. Since then, Jamie has continued her love of running and started training for and running marathons. She rarely goes a day without running.Jamie grew up in South Louisiana and moved to Colorado for graduate school. She is currently working on her J.D. and Masters in Biomedical Sciences at the University of Denver with the hope of becoming a patent attorney.You can find Jamie promoting the marathon on Facebook, Instagram (jischutte), and Twitter (jamielou242). She will be attending running events with Boulder Running Company at Cherry Creek and running groups on campus. Jamie plans to run the Hot Chocolate 15k, the Gulf Coast Half Marathon, and the Louisiana Marathon. She also plans to attend various 5k and 10k races around the Denver and New Orleans areas.
Jamie loves the Colfax Marathon because of the great atmosphere. Everyone is having such a great time, you get to run through some awesome places like the zoo, and the weather in May is perfect marathon weather.
Jeannene is a runner, triathlete, IronMan.Look for her: Racing for Runners Roost”I enjoy volunteering and giving back to the community. I love seeing the faces of the athletes that I encourage and push towards their goals. The smile I receive from them is all I need.”
Jessica Luecking moved to Colorado about five years ago from the Midwest. She has always loved running and all things fitness, but since moving to Colorado her love of being active has evolved to a new level. She has completed her Schwinn cycling instructor certification and restorative yoga instructor certification. In 2013 she ran the Colfax half marathon and is currently in training for the 2015 NYC Marathon in November. These two races have opened up her eyes to the importance of mobility, nutrition, and listening to your body. The most important lesson she has learned through all of her training is that there are good training days and there are bad training days but always remember your mission and never take for granted your ability to move!
While competing for roughly 10 years in triathlon, Jill Howard realized that running was her strength, particularly in long course triathlon. So, by the encouragement of others in the athletic community, Jill switched to pure running in 2009 to attempt to qualify for the Olympic Marathon Trials – just to run in the Trials! While chasing this dream, she fell mysteriously ill in 2011 and was sidelined for more than two years until receiving a diagnosis of a baseball-sized (benign) brain tumor. Jill believes that her greatest athletic success was more than competing in IronMan or on Team USA for several world championships, but in being able to get back on that saddle and to have a surprising comeback after such trauma and setback. Only 11 months after surgery, Jill was able to complete a marathon, winning her Master’s division and qualifying for Boston 2016! Then, she broke 20 in a 5k, and raced up two 14’ers, including Pike’s Peak with a new joy and gratitude because she is ABLE to run again. With “endurance” being the theme in her world, Jill would like to encourage others to keep persevering through trials of any kind.The Colfax race is particularly meaningful to Jill given the tremendous support the organization gave her, encouraging her comeback to the sport and cheering her on the whole way. This parallels how the race genuinely supports the community and its charities in general – with a warm, encouraging embrace to athlete’s of all abilities!Jill can be found on Facebook or on her blog…or lurking in the bushes somewhere on one of your runs: https://overcomewithgratitude.wordpress.com/
Joseph Jaramillo is a Denver native, who recently graduated from Metro State University of Denver with a bachelor’s degree in Sports Industry Operations with a minor in Business Marketing. He has been running various races throughout the Denver area for over 5 years, including the Colfax marathon 2 years in a row. He has enjoyed running the Colfax race for number reasons, one being, the route of the race and the scenery in which you can observe while running. Going through down town Denver, inside Sports Authority field, down the plate river path and to finish up at City Park where everyone goes and enjoys the festivities, foods and drinks and to meet fellow runners and clubs from all over. For the past 10 years Joseph has coached various youth and adult sports at Washington Park Recreation center where he loves to work out, run, swim and play basketball on his free time. He also has a 7 year old daughter who enjoys running as well and plans on signing her up one day for the Colfax marathon. Joseph can be found on most social media sites, Face Book, Instagram, Twitter, Snap chat, LinkedIn, and can be found in person at or around Washington Park area.
Kaitlyn Tafaro has been running on and off for the last 5 years, but over the last two years is when her love (and obsession) of running developed. She is a registered nurse working on the Pediatric unit at Denver Health. She has two dogs that have opposing feelings when it comes to joining her for a few miles. Brock (who is pictured) can run for days and days, where as Misty (who is probably laying on a couch somewhere) prefers a 5 minute light jog only once in a blue moon. ☺️ Kaitlyn loves the Colfax course because it’s a great representation of what Denver is all about, plus you get to run through Sports Authority Stadium…TWICE. How awesome is that? You can follow Kaitlyn on Instagram @kaaitlynmarie42 or friend her on Facebook.
Hailing from Deadwood, South Dakota, Kelsey has lovingly called Denver “home” for the past nine years. With a passion for running instilled by her mom at a young age, Kelsey ran her first 5k when she was just 10 years old. Since then, she has completed numerous races from 5ks, to marathons, to adventure runs – including the Colfax Half Marathon. Her enthusiasm for running coupled with her passion for travel led her to Beijing in 2014, where she finished all 26.2 miles and 4,000 stairs of the Great Wall Marathon. It is her lifelong goal to complete a marathon on every continent.Kelsey loves the Colfax Marathon because the course gives runners the opportunity to explore our beautiful city while accomplishing an outstanding feat. She also respects the race for encouraging competitors to run on behalf of one of over 170 charities.When Kelsey takes a break from running all over the city, you can find her playing a fantastically absurd amount of volleyball, exploring Denver’s vast beer and restaurant scene, traveling the world, and enjoying all the awesome outdoor activities Colorado has to offer.
Facebook: facebook.com/kelseymariemartin and Instagram: k___mart
Kristen started running half marathons in 2003, and has not looked back since. In 2012, she completed 12 half marathons during the year. To date she has completed 52 half marathons (and counting) along with 4 full marathons and several triathlons.
As a Certified Run Coach (RRCA), she helps runners of all abilities, from beginners to advanced level runners, achieve their running goals. Kristen works at Life Time Fitness, in Centennial, as the Regional Run Coordinator. She oversees all the Life Time Run locations in CO, UT, NV, AZ and CA. You can find her running from Life Time Fitness and out of the Boulder Running Company in Greenwood Village.
Kristen’s motto is “Run happy and hills are your friends”. Follow her on http://irunbike.com/,https://www.facebook.com/5280Runners, and on Twitter @5280Runners
Leanne is a Colorado native and a late bloomer in this sport. She started running in 2009, completing her first half marathon that fall. That’s when she knew she was hooked and has been at it ever since. She’s been a member of Mile High Track Club for 4 years and has been a member of Rocky Mountain Road Runners. Leanne has a passion for running and enjoys running with groups, meeting new people and encouraging people to start running and getting involved with the running community. You’ll see her participating & working at a number of races throughout the year – or just cheering on fellow runners along a course. She has participated in a Colfax event every year for the past 6 years… 5K, half marathon (3) and marathon relay (2) and she plans to check-off the Colfax Urban 10-miler box in 2016.
– How long been running: Lisa ran cross-country in high school, but discovered the fun and wonder of longer distances in 2006. That year she ran her first half and full marathon, and hasn’t stopped running since! She’s crossed the finish line at three marathons and countless halfs, 10ks, and 5ks. She’s now considering adding a 50k to her list of accomplishments!
– Something unique about you: Lisa loves to ‘ravel,’ (run + travel!) She’s run races all over the country, but says she always loves to come home to run in Colorado.
– Why you love the Colfax race: Lisa says she loves the Colfax because it’s “the best weekend in Colorado racing!” She says that “Colfax boasts great routes, great medals and shirts, an awesome run club village, it supports local charities, and all my friends run it!” She has made a tradition of running the Colfax 5k on Saturday, and the Colfax 10-miler the next day! Lisa calls Colfax the perfect way to kick off summer!
– Where on social media/blog you can be found: You can find Lisa on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Periscope as lisawilsonco. You can read her blog at runclubgirl.org.
Melissa has been running since high school track (hurdles and relay), so that’ll be 18 years! She was big into running for the 8 years she lived in San Francisco and is still discovering new routes and trails here in Colorado.
She owned a Dog Running (yes running) company in San Francisco. They united energetic runners with dogs who craved one on one exercise. To this day, her favorite runs are those with 4 legged friends.
Melissa loves Colfax because of the runners! Nowhere else can you find a group of Coloradans and visitors who are dedicated to the love of the race and of the state of CO.
When Melissa is not in fitness mode, she run the Social Media program for a Coffee Subscription service called MistoBox – what goes better with running than amazing coffee? You can also find her doing yoga at my studio on 32nd street, volunteering at the local elementary school, hanging with her dog at Sloanes Lake or getting a drink with friends at ‘fill in the blank’ bar (she doesn’t discriminate).
Mike is a fixture at Colorado running events: he’s a runner, volunteer and often part of the race crew for BKB events.
Michael Blanchette’s running days began at Norwich University in Northfield, VT in the fall of 1975 when an upperclassman from his home town dragged him out of his dorm room exile and said emphatically that he was going to run. After relocating to Aurora with the Army, he went to a local running store and picked up Runner’s World magazine, Jim Fixx’s, The Complete Book of Running and Dr George SheehanOn Running. With those tools and only minimal training, he ran his first Colorado marathon in an impressive 3:01:42. He was both elated and disappointed at the same time. The magical sub 3 hr marathon had eluded him but he was thrilled by the sense of self achievement. It was the beginning of his true evolution as a runner and a person.
Watch for him: Joining a friend in yet another 5K, lending a helping hand, cheering you on at the finish line
“I get a lot of joy from simply interacting with other runners – particularly beginners – and helping them reach their goals.”
Connect with Michael on Facebook.
I have spent the past seven years exploring all parts of Colorado one step and one mile at a time. During this I have become stronger mentally, physically, and emotionally and have broken through many barriers such as beating my personal best half marathon time at COLFAX, my first 50 miler, and the Leadville 100. As a Colorado native being a part of the rich tradition of the Colfax Marathon and representing the Marathon and the Ultimate Urban Tour and what the City of Denver has to offer is a dream come true.
Nathan Cape is a Colorado Native, born and raised in Pueblo, Colorado. He and his Wife, Mary, live there with their four-legged kiddos and enjoy traveling and spending time outdoors.After college, Nathan gained extra weight and fell out of a rhythm of exercise and health and decided to make a positive change for the future by signing up for his first half-marathon in 2013. Over the past 2 years, Nathan has raced and participated in the Tulsa Route 66 Half-Marathon, Rock Canyon Half Marathon, Tough Mudder, Spartan Race, Boulder Peak Triathlon, Tri-Rock Triathlon, Colfax Half-Marathon, Colfax Full-Marathon, and most recently became an Ironman Finisher at the Boulder Ironman in August of 2015.
Through each of the races Nathan has participated in, the Colfax Marathon and Half-Marathon have provided some of the greatest highlights and memories for what running means to so many athletes. The Colfax Marathon was the first full-marathon that Nathan ran and the journey of each step, whether it be running through Sports Authority Field at Mile High or feeling the support from the crowds lining the course when he felt like he could not push further, will make a forever-impact on his outlook on what it means to accomplish something that was once thought to be impossible.
In addition to the feeling of accomplishment and pride that came with the finish of the Colfax Marathon, Nathan also has a lasting impression from the Colfax Half-Marathon which was the first Half-Marathon that he was also able to run with his wife who had not previously done anything further than a 5k Walk/Run. Running through the Denver Zoo brought joy and running through the Denver and Aurora Fire Stations brought great pride- bringing the Colfax Half-Marathon to new levels as a participant.
You can find Nathan online and around Colorado in several ways, including: Twitter and Periscope @natecape, Running with the Southern Colorado Runners Club, Blog: TheUncommonAthleteColorado.blogspot.com
Running since 99 and has been punishing himself in marathons since 2011.
He likes extreme sports downhill biking to kayaking, always trying to find another rush.
Colfax race was the race that brought the love of running back to him, gave him the confidence to pursue the running goals he thought were out of reach.
You can find him on Instagram @whydoirun
Nick Olds started running in 2009, and ran his first 5k that same year. After a few years of running casually to try to stay in shape, Nick took on longer distances and in 2013 ran his first marathon. He has run 3 marathon’s, 12 half marathon’s, and many more miles in-between. He enjoys running any distance, and spends his free time with his family and enjoys playing the guitar. He has been playing guitar since he was 14 and enjoys everything from blues to heavy rock.
Colfax has an allure and a draw that no other race has. The life of the city and the view of the mountains make Colfax a unique experience. Colfax changed Nick’s life – because of the race he sought out people to run with, met new friends, and found an amazing and supportive community that has been a part of his life ever since. His connection to other runners started with Colfax, and he hopes others can enjoy those same types of experiences because of this awesome race.
Nick can be found running the streets and expansive trail system of Arvada, mountain trails, and in various races across the Denver area. You can follow Nick on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/nick.olds.9) and Twitter (@nufanul).
Nikki started her running journey in 2006 as a measure to shed some weight and a promise she made to her father to one day run a marathon. With that promise, she registered for and ran her first half marathon in September 2006 and hasn’t looked back. During the process, she discovered her love for running so just kept pounding the pavement. In 2013, Nikki challenged herself to run 20 13.1s and was thrilled to achieve her mark. After fulfilling that goal, she knew that she could do anything she set her mind to do. Nikki enjoys the Colfax Marathon race series as it is an awesome local race that highlights the cities of Denver, Aurora and Lakewood. She has run Colfax all but two years; that’s real dedication to a race series. One of Nikki’s favorite things about running is inspiring and encouraging other runners around her to achieve their goals. She is a member of Black Girls Run, Half Fanatics, Marathon Maniacs and National Black Marathoners Association.
I was born in Casablanca, Morocco and now I live in Aurora, Colorado.
I started running in 2012 after accidentally reading Dean Karnazes’ Book The Ultra Marathon Man. It was not easy getting started, but somehow I became hooked on on running the marathon distance and I have completed more than 46 marathons. I have ran the Colfax marathon 3 times and t’s my favorite local race it brings runners from everywhere to celebrate what they love the most about running. I am very passionate about running and I consider myself to be lucky to live in Colorado where we have such an amazing running community with a strong heritage and culture.
I run with several groups and run clubs in Denver. I am a member of Achilles International of Colorado, and Lending Sight, two amazing organizations which support blind and other challenged athletes. I am also a proud member of the Runners Roost Race Team. I am a marathon maniacs club member as well.
When I am not training, racing, pacing or volunteering, I am definitely reading, or watching something about running.
I have been running for about 18 years.
I have qualified for three Olympic marathon trials (2008-26th place, 2012-13th place, 2016-tbd).
I can be found most of my waking hours at Runners Roost Colorado Springs working the sales floor. I can be found online at @runPRizzo on both Twitter and Instagram. My blog is also available at http://pjrizzo.runnerspace.com.
Qualified for US Olympic Marathon Trials in 2008, 2012, and 2016
Represented USA in 2011 Pan-American Games
Colfax Half Marathon Record Holder 2 years, 1st Place in 2012 and 2013.
Member of Colfax Marathon Board of Directors
1st Place Seattle Rock N Roll half in 2012
PR of 2:13:42 in the marathon and 1:04:22 in the half marathon
Pearly Van Niekerk
My name is Pearly Van Niekerk, I am originally from Zimbabwe. I started running as early as twelve months old that’s what my mother tells me. I started running marathons in 2004 with the goal of running all 50 States, “one cool way to see America I thought!” I think I am almost half way done with getting 50 States. Other adventure sports got me busy and that 50 State goal is still on my bucket list.
Why I love Colfax Marathon: 2015 was my first time running this race. I was told good things about it. I found getting to the race start early in the morning super easy. Lots of breakfast goodies, easy access to parking, potter potties, and well organized. The race is a Boston Qualifier. The course is smooth and flat. The scenery is awesome, this is how you get to see other awesome parts of Colorado besides the mountains. I loved the volunteers and all fact that the Denver Community can be part of this Race.
You can find me on Twitter: Zimchic@Zimninja.com | Instagram: @AVDCHIC | www.pintrest.com/zimchic
Something Unique about me: I advocate for Zimbabwe Children orphanages (for education), that’s why I ran.
For Randy, coaching and competing has been a lifelong passion – he was a state-ranked high school athlete in cross country and track and field.
Today, he is a regionally-ranked Masters distance runner and full-time coach and trainer. He founded the company Running Chai, providing one-on-one training for specific events, corporate running groups, or for fitness in general. Randy and the runners that he coaches have amassed an impressive record of top age group finishes, in multiple distances ranging from 5k to a full Marathon. Randy placed 6th in his age group at the 2013 Colfax Half Marathon with a time of 1:36:24.
Diagnosed with MS in 2004, doctors recommended that Randy quit all physical activity. Against the doctor’s recommendation, he continued his running career. Soon after his diagnosis, he completed a half marathon, and since then has gone on to compete in many races. His struggle with MS has inspired him to further his career in coaching others, including those with neurological disorders.
Look for him: Randy is a Running Coach at Altitude Multisport and coaches their Saturday AM Run Crew. You’ll see him at the weekly runs at Runners Roost Lone Tree Run Club, Mile High Track Club, Run Colorado. He’s an avid Cyclist, USATF Certified Coach, Lydiard Level 2 Certified Coach,NFHS – National Federation of State High School Associations Certified Coach, and a United States Navy Sports Program Track and Field Coach. And did we mention he’s also a certified ski instructor? You’ll find him on the slopes every weekend during the winter, skiing with his 9 year old son.
“Running is life and the rest is just details!”
Rebecca Sunshine started in running for fun in high school and to help her relieve stress in college. But didn’t become passionate about running until she completed her first Bolder Boulder after moving home to Colorado. “I got home that night and was so proud of myself for finishing the 6.2 mile run until I watched the news and saw a story about a man who was running 70 miles for his 70th birthday. At age 24, my 6.2 miles suddenly became very underwhelming,” said Rebecca. That day she decided to train for a marathon, 26 miles for her 26thbirthday.
Rebecca’s favorite time to run is in the winter months, which is a good thing because she is not a fan of the winter sports Colorado has to offer. She loves the Colfax race because it highlights some of the most interesting points along the longest (and sometimes strangest) continuous road in America.
Rebecca can be found on Twitter and Instagram at @RLSunshine and in real life running around City Park.
Sara Farmer began her running journey in 2012 after downloading the “Couch to 5K” app. Since then, she has run multiple 5K, 10K, 10 mile, and 13.1 races. This past June she completed her first half Ironman. She hopes to complete her first 26.2 distance this spring on the Fax. She also enjoys dancing, acting, snow skiing, and playing soccer.
Sara loves the Colfax because of her magical memories from the 2013 half through the Denver Zoo and running with the rhinos and elephants. “It felt like the animals were running with me; truly a breath-taking experience in more ways than one.” She loves that the weekend feels like a community and running festival combined that brings the Denver and out-of-state athletes together.
You can usually find Sara at school. She is a 4th and 5th grade literacy teacher at Johnson Elementary (DPS) and coaches a local high school dance team. Otherwise, she is traveling or perusing the fine establishments on Colfax or Broadway. You can reach her on Facebook at Sarita L. Granjero.
Tj is so glad to be a Colfax Marathon Ambassador for 2015-2016! Tj started his running journey in 2008 as part of a challenge to run his first half marathon at Disney World! At almost 290lbs this was a challenge he took seriously for his health and a sense of accomplishment! 7 years and almost 12 half marathons under his belt including several Colfax Marathons he can officially say he loves running! TJ has 2 mottos when it comes to racing 1. Races are like mullets business in the front party in the back! 2. If I can do this you can too!!Fb: www.Facebook.com/Tjkizuka | Insta: Tkizuka | Twitter: @TJKizuka
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