Published Oct. 3, 2023
BY ZANA BALABAN
Through the CHS Trail Running Club, a group of students have been running together on nature trails with the intention of fundraising for non-profit organizations by hosting charity races.
The club is led by sophomore Lila Glazier, who helped take the cross-country team to state championships last year. Glazier sat in Juan Gomez’s Integrated Math ll class last year, and when she found out her teacher has run trails and half-marathons, she brought to his attention her seedling of a proposal.
“She came up with it on her own,” math teacher Gomez says. “Her interest is just getting students to go out and run. So whether they’re cross-country runners or just trying to get out and be outdoors, the goal of the club is ‘Let’s get everybody running.’”
Glazier’s ambition for the 20 to 30 members of the club is to be proactive in the community while staying active. The main focus and goal will be to host charity races at which all proceeds will be donated to non-profit organizations.
“We’ve come up with a lot of ideas for charity races,” Gomez says, “and that’s kind of where they are now, in the idea stage.”
In order to learn the nuts and bolts of hosting one themselves, the students plan to first volunteer at local races. A few big events on their agenda are the Big Sur Half Marathon in November and the Fort Ord Trail Run in January, hosted by Inside Trails, an ultramarathon company that organizes events around California.
In the meantime, the Trail Running Club meets up for local trail runs on weekends, led by cross-country star Glazier and accompanied by both accomplished runners and passionate beginners. Gomez also joins them.
“[The runs] will probably be at Palo Corona or Garland, and we might go to further places once the club gets even bigger,” Glazier says.
Members of the club include boys and girls in all four grades. Senior Christiana Kvitek, an ultramarathoner who recently ran the 100-mile Backcountry Run in Yosemite, voices her eagerness to create a welcoming community in which students both support and challenge each other.
“I hope we can just have fun out on the trails, not judging people by the pace,” Kvitek says. “Trail running is the best for that type of thing because usually you eat, chat, power hike up hills and get to see views most people don’t.”
Club vice president Claire Kim, a sophomore who is also a devoted member of the CHS cross-country team, expresses a similar opinion.
“We want to eliminate the negative stigma about running that you need to be fast to run,” Kim says. “We want people of different speeds and goals to try out this club and come join us for some fun and good exercise.”