Coach's Update

Faster? Races in the fall?

Hello, UO Club runners — (Saturday, July 30, 2022)

Worlds are over. Agate Street reopens this weekend. We’re back to HOT summertime in Eugene. The Thursday evening all-comers meet was cancelled for the first time in my memory. It was too hot!

If you’re training, try to get your run done right away in the morning! You’ll be glad you did.

Are you ready to add a bit of faster running? Read below.
Are you looking for a racing schedule? Read below.

Reminders from our new student coordinators, Keaton Ibendahl and Thomas Brugnara:

— We’re working on getting more racing singlets for the fall. Cost $25 as always.
— Club membership will be $50 for the whole school year again.
— Our cross country season is shaping up but the NIRCA Pacific regional date and site are unknown. So, the conclusion of our season schedule is still up-in-the-air. We’ve added an October 15 XC meet hosted by Lewis & Clark.
— Getting lots of certified van drivers right away in the fall will be a priority.
— There are two UO volleyball matches for our ball crew a month from now. It’s our best fundraiser. You can be part of it!
— Our workouts during fall term will be at 3pm on school days, as usual. On Tuesdays (hard day!) there will probably be an early morning alternative time too.


We have summer runs in Eugene this week on Monday (August 1), Wednesday (August 3), and Friday (August 5). We’ll meet at my house at 8am. I’ll ride my bike; you run.

I live at 1012 E. 21st Avenue, on the corner of 21st and Harris.


This week there will be eight weeks until school starts. If you’ve been diligent about doing aerobic runs and you want to prepare to race, now is the time to add something faster.

Let’s keep it simple for now.

One day this week, do 6-8 relaxed strides on some soft, firm surface (grass, turf, dirt, track...not pavement). They can be about 100 meters or twenty seconds. Take as much rest as you want between. Run at a speed that’s brisker than your steady run. Look for a feeling of relaxed might take several reps or even several sessions to feel good running faster. That’s fine...the ability to run fast and feel good doing it will come back!

Barefoot strides are okay.

On another day, do a short tempo run, just 6:00-8:00 total. Go out for your regular the middle of it, speed up a little, to a faster pace which you can easily hold for six or eight minutes. This is somewhere near lactate threshold. It feels brisk, good, and easy to sustain for several minutes. It’s not even close to cross country race effort or 10km race effort. Someone who sees you running at lactate threshold will know that you are not just out for a run, but will not wonder if you are in a race.

On another day, do a longer run that’s one or two miles farther than any of your others during the week. This is your first weekly long run. You can build it gradually to 11-15 miles during the fall.

Strides, short tempo, longer run...that’s where we’ll start. Now, the “ifs”:

1) If you have specific questions, email me at

2) If you are already doing more than this, be careful. Make steady progress, but be patient!

3) If you haven’t even started a mileage buildup yet, read below! There is still time! Find out how to start and select a method…


‘Want to do some races in the fall? It’s time to prepare.

Some of you count miles, some of you don’t. This is the time of year when cross country runners do mostly easy-paced, steady runs in gradually increasing amounts. (We’ll add some quality beginning in August.)

These relaxed-paced runs establish an aerobic base, build muscular endurance, and toughen connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, cartilage). The intensity stays low as the volume increases.

There are nine weeks until fall term starts…probably plenty of time to accumulate a slightly greater volume of running this summer than you’ve done before. But where to start?

You can build from whatever volume you are doing now to some amount that, for you, is a lot. Aim to hit your high mileage in early or mid-September. Get some work done, and arrive in the fall feeling that you’re well prepared...ready to do hard days twice a week in late September, and a long run on the weekend.

But don’t be a slave to mileage! There is virtue in rest. And it’s better to not risk a blowup. If you get five or six days in a week exactly as you want them, that’s a pretty high success ratio. It’s better to get to Eugene in the fall healthy and ready, than to have gone over the edge by pushing too hard.

Strive for excellence, not perfection!

You can arrive here in the fall ready to start some racing. I’ll give you sample workouts of faster runs and reps in August so that you can be ready to do to full workouts by mid-September.

If you’re just now starting your buildup of volume, and you want to count weekly miles, here are two ways to progress:

Plateau method: example — 30-30-35-35-41-41-48-48-56-56 --a gradual increase, but with plateaus to “consolidate your gains” and be sure that you’re ready for the next step up. Jack Daniels suggests three-week plateaus, with slightly bigger jumps. Consider it!

Dropback method: example — 30-36-42-36-42-49-42-49-57-49 --you build up two weeks then drop back for one week. The progress seems slow but the chance of being hurt or worn out is small. You still get there!

If you have specific questions now, email me at


Are you a non-counter? ‘Like to run, but don’t like to count miles? That works!

If you want to run some cross country or road races in the fall, just try to get out the door most days for a run. Go whatever pace feels good. Keep the routes varied. Find someone to run with.

Running without counting and timing can be fun and rewarding. And you’ll end up running farther and faster over the summer, without trying to.

Come back to Eugene in September, fresh and ready for an enjoyable fall!


Have you found an activity or two that you really enjoy? A team? Be creative!

We hope to have an active sprint training group this fall on the turf fields right next to Hayward Field.


Please reach out if you can help me at this Wednesday’s kid’s meet (August 3)!

This week's OTC all-comers' meets are at South Eugene High School, NOT Silke Field in Springfield. If you are in town, you can help officiate the 7-8-9 year old’s long jump with me. I’ve worked these meets for over 40 years.

The first meet is this Wednesday, starting at 5:30pm. Contact me at or text me at 541-954-0263.

— ages 12 and under on Wednesdays: August 3.
— ages 13 and older: Thursdays: August 4.

If you want to compete on Thursdays ($5), look here:


Fri, Sept 30 Mike Johnson Classic WOU
Sat, Oct 1 Willamette Invitational Salem

Thur, Oct 13 Oregon Track Club monthly run 5km Pre’s Trail evening, $5

Sat, Oct 15 Lewis & Clark Invitational McIver Park, Estacada

?Fri, Oct 21 Run with the Duck 5km road race riverfront, free

Fri, Nov 4 Lewis & Clark 2-mile on the track

Sun, Nov 6 Autumn Trails 3.5 mi, 6 mi, 10 mi, 16 mi
Rexius/Ridgeline $25-$40

Sun, Nov 20 EWEB Run to Stay Warm 5km, 10km, half-marathon


Dillin Siembieda
Ocean View HS, CA

Kellan Murakami
San Leandro HS CA

Charlie Townes
Lincoln HS, Portland

Avery Hackenberg
Eden Prairie HS MN

Henry Law
Aloha HS

Takuya Kanayama

Nitai Gaash
Agoura HS CA

Oliver Osman Murgian Hedger
continuing UO grad student, Portland

Miles Freightman
frosh, El Cerrito HS CA

Eli Hansen
continuing UO student

Carter Phillips
frosh, Spring Park MI

Serena Worley
frosh, Deerfield ILL

Molly Hastings
UO junior

Evan Tucker
frosh, Grants Pass HS OR

‘See you,

Tom Heinonen



Who we are. What we do!

UO Running Club gives students the chance to get together to run, train and race. Most of our sessions are steady runs. A couple of days each week we offer harder training sessions (intervals, repetitions, hills, tempo runs, cruise intervals).

The club is coached by Tom Heinonen, a member of the US Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Hall of Fame who coached the University of Oregon women for nearly three decades. In his time coaching the women, he transformed the team from a young program into an NCAA powerhouse. He retired in 2003 to start the club and has been coaching it since.

In the Fall, we compete in collegiate cross country races throughout Oregon, then finish our season at the NIRCA Championships, where we face other college clubs. In the Spring, we enter in collegiate track meets. Several of our runners earn the opportunity to race at Hayward Field each spring. There are road races throughout the year.

We have a wide range of talent and commitment levels, from recreational runners to All-Americans.

Club members receive an e-mailed workout schedule for the following week every Sunday. There is no fee to join the club.

All running sessions are optional. To join, just show up to one of the practices or contact one of us.

The Running Club is a great way to get together with students and to enjoy running!



'Starting a Running Club?
'Building Your Club?

Read this, a document written by our Club leaders!


Ticket Jones is a proud sponsor of the University of Oregon RunningClub. We handle a variety of sporting event tickets including the NCAA Final Four, NHL Hockey, and the Pro Bowl. Our packages such as Broadway theatre performances and concerts can be ordered world-wide. Domestic events center around football games, (college football and NFL), US Open Tennis tournaments, and College Bowl games. Internationally we focus on soccer matches. Local favorite teams include the Boston Celtics, New England Patriots, and the Boston Red Sox. Tour packages are available for MLB Baseball, exciting PBR and NFR rodeo events, Grandslam Tennis, NASCAR and all Washington Wizards basketball games.