The Elkin Elementary School girls running program, G-Force, ran in the Rosy Cheeks 5k on Saturday, December 8, in Mount Airy.
Fourteen girls in the G-Force program competed in the 3.1-mile race.
All girls completed the race in less than 38 minutes. The fastest times of the group were 24:49 by Harper Lee Libbert, followed by Tiana Sanders in 25:48 and Kenley Wells in 25:52. The times were personal bests.
“I beat my personal best by two and a half minutes,” said a jubilee Harper Lee Libbert. “For this race, I had someone that I knew who was running in front of me from Surry Central High School. I wanted to keep pace with her.”
Harper did keep a steady pace, and she even defeated her friend by seconds.
“This is my 7th 5K race,” continued Harper Lee. “I’m now preparing for a national mountain race in Beach Mountain. That race in August is a 10k challenge.”
G-Force stands for Girl Force and is founded on the principle that a fit girl is a powerful girl,” said parent/coach Stacey Libbert. “The program promotes fitness, nutrition, sportsmanship, and supporting classmates as part of a healthy lifestyle.
Healthy eating, healthy lifestyle, and exercise is something our girls can do entire life,” continued the coach. “At G-Force we encourage kids to turn off the television, get outside, but we focus on more than sports. The girls bond and become friends.”
The students train over 10-weeks to either walk or run a 5k. Girls meet with coaches one afternoon a week for a fitness work-out and discussions on healthy eating, integrating fitness into their life, and supporting teammates. Twenty-seven girls from Elkin Elementary School, grades 3-6, participated in the program this fall.
“Everyone is welcomed in the sport of running, said coach Libbert. ” It’s a very inclusive sport.”
The program was sponsored this fall by Farm Bureau Insurance - Greg Sidden Agency and Edward Jones. Through sponsorships, the program is provided at no cost to the runners.
The entry fee for the Rosey Cheeks race was an unwrapped toy per runner. Libbert noted that Cicely McCulluch of Diane’s Bookstore arranged for a major discount off the team’s bulk toy purchase making it possible for the entire team to participate.
“Sponsors are so involved with our team,” said Libbert. “They really make it possible for us to continue.”
The G-Force will hold another 10-week session starting in February in the spring and race the Habitat Hammer on April 27.
Reach Anthony Gonzalez by calling 835-1513 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.