Philosophically Built Running Program

Philosophically Builts first running program was a huge success! It was made up of amazing individuals that pushed themselves to be better at the end of the program compared to the beginning. I wanted to take the opportunity and congratulate / acknowledge everyone involved.

Jessica Blake- Jess was a running coach during this program. I asked Jess to be a running coach for a couple of reasons. First, I saw Jess go from having a five mile run be her long run to training for and completing a 32 mile race. The dedication she showed during that year span was remarkable and I was very inspired by her discipline, will power, and tenacity to set such a high goal and achieve it. Another reason I chose Jess to be a running coach for PB is because she is such a big team player. She has a way about her that makes everyone feel welcome and she is not afraid to lighten the mood with any means necessary. Jess was perfect for her role where she took beginner runners and guided them with a manageable running plan, critiqued running form, brought people up out of their “running is hard” mindset, and gave advice with what to do between runs. During the Parlor City 5k Jess was seen running with Megan, one of our beginner runners shouting out words of encouragement as they crossed the finish line together. Jess is an exceptional leader and a perfect fit for Philosophically Builts running team and we are proud to call her our running coach.

Ryan Comfort – Ryan once told me “I only run when I am being chased”. He said he never ran a 5k and had no ambition to. With this attitude I figured Ryan would never run. Although as the start of the program began to inch closer and closer I couldn’t help but notice that Ryan was asking an awful lot of questions regarding the running program. He finally told me that he decided to try the running program and see what happens. Upon signing up and running his first couple times he began to talk to me about different shoe types, (where he ended up buying a new pair of running shoes) different running strategies and best breathing patterns to use. As the program progressed Ryans distance was increasing and running times were getting much faster! He would wake up before work and run at the JC track multiple times per week all the while maintaining his fitness program at PB 5 days a week. On Fridays where we have a designated small group class Ryan wanted to do longer distances with hills. I was noticing his Strava times getting better very fast and how he was positively talking about running. He became hooked and addicted to the progress he was making. During the Parlor City 5k Ryan, Mark and myself stood up at the starting line where there was a sense of quiet before the storm. When the race gun was fired and we began running I knew Ryans training would pay off. For his first 5k he placed 55th overall and 35th in his age group. He averaged a 7:23 minute mile with a total completion time of 22:59. I see Ryan doing even better his next 5k now that he knows what to expect and I also see him increasing his race distance to a 10k or even half marathon.


Andrea – I have known Andrea for a couple of years now. The whole time I have known her she has been running on and off very consistently. Andrea is someone who will run in all conditions if she is in it. She runs in the middle of winter at Jones park which is very icy, wet and cold that time of year. Even on this programs very first run it rained and Andrea was on of the people who showed up, ready to go. She also has ran a half marathon this year as well so running is nothing new to Andrea. With her run experience I put Andrea in the experienced category. Andrea was a great asset to this team. During our Saturday runs at 8AM Andrea would converse with the other runners and make the three to four mile runs go very quickly. Since she is an experienced runner she was able to push her boundaries while simultaneously pulling others with her. The discipline and dedication she put into the training really paid off during the Parlor City 5k as Andrea got a personal Best!  She finished in 29:04 with an average pace of 9:22. I really enjoyed watching Andrea grow as a runner over the years. I can see her continuing running and being active as time goes on. It’s in her blood.

Kali Kies – Kali was a born dancer. She danced her whole childhood, started doing yoga after dance was over, and then eventually started doing fitness training at PB. Kali never got into running but when we decided to open this program up She didn’t hesitate to commit to it.One thing about Kali is that she is always open to try new things. Not only does she try new things but when she understands it and gets more comfortable with it she ends up doing very well at them. During this program Kali showed up every Saturday ready to run at 8am and followed it up with a 9am PB workout. She started off running 1.5 miles at a nice and easy pace to get used to the form we teach and breathing techniques. Then as time went on she bumped it up to three miles. When she was done she was always glad that she did the run, commenting on how beautiful it was outside as she took in her surroundings. One time when we were running she got a cramp about a half mile in and kept running with the cramp the whole 2.5 mile run. It was during this moment I knew this girl was tough. She was obviously struggling but kept on pushing through it for almost two miles! I have been with people who when they get a bad cramp they have to stop but Kali was determined to finish strong. I was very proud to see Kali develop as a runner and watch her become proud of herself. The first time she ran three miles she looked at me with glee and said “I ran three miles today”. During the 5k Kali was right behind Andrea with a time of 29:05 at a 9:22 pace. It was a privilege to be able to teach show kali that running doesn’t have to be a grind like many people think but instead be an experience that shows you that you are capable of more than you thought while giving you the opportunity to enjoy the morning fresh air.


Chris Chesmore – I have known Chris on Facebook through mutual friends for some time now. I connected with Chris due to our similar views and interests. When I announced the running program Chris was actually the first person to reach out and tell me he was interested in it. During the program I thoroughly enjoyed talking to him every Saturday morning and watching his Strava runs. Every time he ran his Strava would say he was getting better and better. To see someone put their heart into a program is inspiring. Chris would come at 8am for the Saturday morning run then right after would have to quickly shower, pack his bag and bolt out the door saying bye to everyone as he was walking to his car. Every Saturday I saw this and realized he was determined to do this program and succeed in this race. Many people would have used the excuse “I have work Saturday morning and I won’t be able to do it.” Not Chris. Chris is an example of someone who is willing to do what it takes to get what you want. All the training paid off as he finished the race right with Kali and Andrea with a time of 29:05 at a 9:22 pace. Chris was a pleasure to have in the group. He was always smiling and ready to go which is important to have in a running group because it makes it easier for everyone else. I thoroughly enjoyed seeing Chris pull up on Saturday morning, conversing with him, watch him push himself and then immediately tend to his responsibilities. He is a good example of a strong, disciplined man.

Taylor Caramore – Taylor had done her own running program in the past to train for a 5k and half marathon. A year and a half ago she had twins and wanted to get back into running shape so she decided to do our running program. Besides showing up and running on Saturdays Taylor took her speed work and tempo runs seriously. She would go to the track and work on the speed work portion routinely, even though she wasn’t a big fan of it. Throughout all of the running training she would also come to PB and workout two – three times a week. She was dedicated and I was excited to see her perform during the 5k. Although, the morning of she was sick and couldn’t run. Bad luck happens to all of us. But she still went and supported the whole team and even brought her two cute little sidekicks who had fun cheering on all the runners! Taylor is a team player. She is not only there for herself but for the unit and she proved that during this training program / race.

Chris Whittaker – Chris was one of those people who said “I will only run when Im being chased.” But since working out at PB and talking to him about Cameron Hanes he decided to try this “Keep Hammering” mindset and try out running. We gave him a beginner program that he immediately grew out of and had to upgrade him to the next level. Chris would wake up at the crack dawn three times a week and run 2 – 5 miles before he even started his day. His mantra changed from “I will only run when I’m being chased” to “Keep Hammering”. Since he started running I have personally noticed a change in his physical body as he began to ramp up his weekly calories burned he began to lose fat quicker showing the muscle he has been building with PB. My big plan for Chris is to get him to be an avid trail runner. He went to Jones Park with me once and we ran about 5 miles with a lot of elevation. He is a natural and if he stays with it and expands into trail running, elevation training and long runs he will be a force. Chris couldn’t make the Parlor City 5k and new it before starting the running program which speaks volumes for him. He wanted to get better at running and took the first step. Excited to see where he is in a year from now.

I am very honored to be able to help people who want to take their lives in their own hands and build themselves to be better today than they were yesterday. When we get a community of  like minded people to get together and work towards bettering ourselves it amplifies. We hold each other up when we want to quit. We lead by example and inspiration and that literally changes people’s mindset to put in the extra effort they have inside them but needs to be pulled out. We are a team that grows together. We are all on the same path, just different parts of that path. People who are ahead on the path reach back and help others who are behind the path remembering what it was like to be at that point. People who are behind look to the front and see what is possible if they keep putting in the work to grow as an individual. It is a journey that lasts a lifetime. It has its ups and down, times where you feel 100% and injuries, happy moments and aggravated moments. But on a long enough timeline the graph of performance goes up. The only thing you have to do is stay on the path.

If you want to take control of your fitness / mindset and want to be part of a group of people who are also doing it sign up for our next running program. We will be announcing it soon on our Facebook page and Instagram so be sure to follow us on those platforms! When we announce it and you mention this write up we will give you 10% off the price. Here is to finishing our first ever running program and continuing the journey of growth to the next stage of our lives.

-Blake Hickey, Owner and Head Coach of Philosophically Built