Marathons challenge staff and students

Teacher Jason Logsdon and seniors Jon Ulicny, Olivia Valley and Ashley Oman share their Detroit race experiences


While reading an article about spots for the 2013 Detroit Marathon filling quickly, Biology teacher Jason Logsdon decided to participate after his broken foot healed.

“There are both mental and physical aspects of running a marathon: getting physically in shape, but also mentally preparing yourself for all the unpleasantness of running,” Logsdon said.

Logsdon and senior Jon Ulicny ran in the 2013 Detroit Free Press/Talmer bank Marathon. The 26.2 mile race took them past the Renaissance Center and onto Belle Isle. The marathon was not the only race held in Detroit; seniors Olivia Valley and Ashley Oman ran the Detroit Free Press International half-marathon.

To gain the physical endurance needed for a race, Valley began preparing 10 weeks prior to her race. She followed an online training regimen consisting of running 4-12 miles four days a week in addition to cheer practice. Also training for the half-marathon, Oman chose to prepare by walking around Stoney Creek Metropark.

“I actually hate running. My advice would be to train more than I did,” Oman said.

Oman chose to run the half marathon to raise money for a Haitian orphanage. The 13.2 mile route took runners over the Ambassador Bridge to Canada and back into the United States via the underwater mile. Participants ran through the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel, which runs beneath the Detroit River.

“The underwater mile was really cool, especially because it is the only one in the US,” Valley said.

Two factors in choosing to run a race were physical fitness and the challenge of running, according to Ulicny, Valley and Oman.

“The largest benefit was actually saying I’ve ran a marathon before, putting a 26.2 bumper sticker on my car and being able to eat my whole house after the race,” Ulicny said.

Ulicny, Valley and Oman plan to continue with their racing. However, Logsdon, 10 days post-marathon did not see another in his future. Ulicny plans to run a half-marathon in Mount Clemens in April 2014, while Oman’s and Valley’s bucket lists both include a full marathon on them.

“Sometimes running is like life,” Oman said. “It feels like you’ll never get through it, but if you keep placing one foot in front of the other and push forward, you can do anything.”