Featured Athlete

nancy freeman marathon race

Nancy Freeman, Age 51


Race Highlight
Leading the crowd in the national anthem at the first Mount Lemmon HM, with the lights of Tucson twinkling below and dawn lightening the sky behind the hoodoos… Sweaty and salt encrusted, slogging up Kitt Peak at sunset with bats tumbling through the air and the observatory gleaming in the last rays of the sun…. Training at dawn in the marble-lined streets of Ashgabad, Turkmenistan; two guards outside the Congress building call out, “Eh, Dyevushka, Dobroye Utro!” I wish them a good morning in return, and if they want to call me young lady, I’ll take that!

More highlights on my running blog.


Before Training with Coach Allison

I wasn’t a very sporty child and not really physically active until my 40’s, when I started hiking and doing aerobics classes like BodyCombat.  I took up running and racing a couple years ago, starting with Pat’s Run in the spring and working up to the Mount Lemmon Half Marathon that fall, and then decided I was going to run a marathon for my 50th birthday.  I was basically throwing together my own training plan from various plans I’d seen on the internet.  Halfway through the marathon I started having serious IT band problems – it was clear I hadn’t trained well enough.  I finished my race, but that week I talked to a co-worker who introduced me to coach Allison through her running club.  Coach put together a personalized training plan based on my fitness level and my times, and worked with me on my running form over the summer.  I finished my next marathon in Istanbul with no problems, and took 25 minutes off my total time!  My times have improved overall and my stamina is much better – I’m able to run longer without breaks. We’re working on cutting that down even further for my upcoming marathon on Easter Island.

Before Training with Coach Allison
After working with David
  • 2/20/11 Lost Dutchman Marathon 5:29:50
  • 1/19/11 P.F. Chang Rock-n-Roll AZ Half Marathon 2:33:41
  • 10/16/11 Istanbul Marathon 5:10:25
  • 2/19/12 Lost Dutchman Half Marathon 2:10:08

Past Featured Athletes


Donna Jagielski, Age 42

Race Highlight
  • P.F. Chang’s 2010 Marathon – 5:11 finish
Before Training with Coach Allison

Half marathons had been my furthest distance in racing before training with Coach Allison. My half marathon times were just slightly under three hours. Once I had decided to run a full marathon is when I began my training with Coach Allison. Just prior to my decision to run a full marathon my running times were slow and I felt the need to take many walking breaks. I was not as informed as I should have been about nutrition while running either. When I decided my heart was set on running a marathon, I knew I wanted to train with a very good coach and a supportive group of runners. One of my greatest fears about selecting a training program was that in order for me to cross the finish line, I was going to have to basically give up my whole life, except for work. I knew it was going to be a huge commitment, but I didn’t want to be part of a program, which was going to demand a huge portion of my life.

Coach David’s program makes marathon running accessible and realistic for the regular person, who has work, a family, home, and social life. You can very successfully cross the finish line, feeling really great about what you have accomplished and STILL have a life during the training program.

Besides being extremely knowledgeable about the world of running and training overall, Coach David is a very, very caring individual who truly puts his heart and soul into helping everyone achieve their goals. Coach David and the people in his training group have become my friends and I know I can count on them for endless support.

Over the course of several years with Coach David I have not only witnessed my body become a much better runner, but certainly my mind. I now honestly believe in myself that I am and will continue to be, a successful runner.

Before Training with Coach Allison
After working with David
  • Half marathon Chicago Distance Classic 2006 – best time – 2:55
  • Half Marathon: Fiesta Bowl Half Marathon 2009 – 2:24 (PR)
  • P.F. Chang’s Marathon 2008 (first marathon) – 6:08
  • P.F. Chang’s Marathon 2009 (second marathon) – 5:35
  • P.F. Chang’s Marathon 2010 (third marathon) – 5:11 (PR)

Archived Featured Athletes