Training with RVC for the CHaD HERO

River Valley Club (RVC) is committed to supporting the 2017 CHaD HERO, and we are excited to share some of our team’s top training tips with you. Looking for camaraderie and not on a team yet?  You are welcome to join ours!  RVC is offering fundraising incentives to help Team RVC members prepare for the 2017 CHaD HERO, including a 12 week dedicated group training program designed by RVC Trainer, Tara Ebejer for those who raise $250.  Group training runs the week of July 24 through October 29 and will be held every Tuesday and Thursday at noon. In addition to the free training twice a week, you also receive a free membership with full access to the club during the training period dates. Already on a team? Consider developing your own set of incentives to keep your members motivated and optimize their fundraising efforts.

TaraEbejer Head Shot

Here are some training tips from Tara:


  1. Sign up for the CHaD HERO — right now!

Signing up for the race makes it official.  You now have a race date and a training deadline to motivate you. Making it official keeps you accountable to your training schedule and workouts.  Be proud of this first step and share the news with your family and friends – this further helps with the commitment, and your fundraising efforts.

  1. Journal

Keep a running journal noting things you ate, what you wore, weather, how you felt, etc.  This will be helpful for you to look back and see why a run felt not so good or why it felt great.  Note what foods you ate during your run and see what works and didn’t work so well. Journals also help with training for future races – looking back to see if you really trained as hard as you think you did.

Calculate your weekly mileage total to make sure you are following your training schedule and not overtraining. There should be NO big mileage jumps – just a slow steady increase every week and don’t forget to allow for rest days and cut back weeks.

  1. Running Form

Relax during your runs. Don’t worry about your speed; that will come in time.  Running is a natural movement so good running form should feel natural.  Remember the following tips:

Head – is up.   Your chin should be level, not be up, down or forward. Keep your eyes moving and alert. Enjoy the scenery.

Shoulders – keep them low and loose, NOT hunched forward.

Arms – keep your arms moving forward and back; not across the body.

Torso – run tall and do not lean forward unless going up a steep hill.

Legs and Feet – keep your stride short and underneath your pelvis. Do not run with long strides. Efficient runners run 180 steps per minute, regardless of speed.

  1. Mental Preparation

An important part of training for a race is mental preparation. You need to be ready for ‘bad’ days. During training your brain can get ahead of your body which may make some runs feel ‘bad’. Expect to have good and bad days and know that it is OK.

Remember EVERYONE has race anxieties!  Be prepared to face these fears and know that you will overcome them. Common fearful thoughts include:

  • “Everyone is faster then me – I run too slow”
  • “I am going to be the last one to cross the finish line”
  • “What if I fail and cannot complete the race

Putting forth effort and overcoming fear can make accomplishing any task even more worthwhile and gratifying.

  1. Cross-Training

Include cross-training exercises on your run days and/or non-run days.


Many people think of the core as just their abdominal muscles, however, the core consists of 29 muscles including back muscles, gluteus, and pelvic floor muscles..  Think of the core as LEADER OF THE PACK. All movement begins from the core so a strong core is essential.  Core training also helps to protect the spine during functional activities aiding in injury prevention. A strong core is essential for all runners! Include exercises like the plank, side plank, bridges, and glute strengthening exercises (clams, single leg squats, etc.).


Balance is key to all functional movement such as running, walking, getting dressed, climbing stairs, and playing sports. Our balance becomes altered a) as we age b) with muscle imbalances and c) with injuries. Therefore everyone can benefit from balance training, which also helps to improve joint stability and alignment decreasing the risk of injuries. Exercises include any single leg movements such as single leg squats or single leg reaches.


There are so many benefits to resistance training!

  • Improved cardiovascular efficiency – benefits runners
  • Increased bone density
  • Decreased body fat – makes runners FASTER
  • Increased metabolism
  • Increased strength
  • Improved mental state
  • Decreased stress
  • Increased energy & stamina
  • Look and feel better
  • It’s FUN!


 More than before, flexibility training has become a key component in all training programs. Some benefits to flexibility training are: correction of muscle imbalances, increase in joint range of motion, decrease in muscle tension, relief of joint stress, and maintaining muscle optimal length.   It also feels good!

Types of Flexibility Training:

Self-Myofascial Release/Foam Rolling:

When: before & after exercise

What:   a stretching technique that focuses on both the neural and fascial systems in the body which are fibrous tissues that surround and separate muscle tissue.  Adhesions or knots are created in the fascia with everyday activities and exercise.

How:   use a foam roller and apply gentle force to the knots. The muscle fibers are altered from a bundled position into a straighter alignment with the direction of the muscle or fascia. This helps restore the body back to its optimal length of function. Remember to hold the force onto the knot for 20 seconds, keep relaxed and breathe!

Dynamic Stretching:

When: before exercise as a warm up

What:  stretching of muscles using force production and momentum to move the joints through full range of motion

Examples: tube walking, walking lunges, prisoner squats, high knee walk, inchworm, and spidermans

Spiderman Stretch
Inchworm Stretch

Race Day Rules

  1. NEVER WEAR anything NEW on race day. This means NO new shoes, socks, shirts, pants, bras, etc.  Make sure you have worn all of your clothing at least once and that it is comfortable.
  2. NEVER EAT anything DIFFERENT on race day.  On your weekend runs practice eating different things and find what works for you.
  3. Make sure you are well hydrated; increasing fluid intake few days prior to your race. You should be sipping water continuously so that your urine is a clear color. On race day start sipping water as soon as you wake up. No need to chug water — just sip—you don’t want to get bloated.
  4. Be prepared to run in any type of weather.   You never know what to expect in New England.
  5. Mentally prepare yourself, have fun, and enjoy the journey!




B+ is not just Cameron Marshall’s blood type, it has been his, and his family’s, motto. When Cam was diagnosed with leukemia in July of 2008, and found out his blood type, he latched on to it as a mantra for hope in fighting his cancer.  It didn’t take long for the Marshall family to realize they were not alone in this fight and rather than focus inward on their struggle they created the B+ (Be Positive for CHaD Kids) program to give back and help other CHaD families.

Cam knew what it was like for his mom to stay with him at CHaD every day, so he wanted to find a way to help other families feel a little more at home during their stay at CHaD. As a result, the B+ program provides healthy snacks to the CHaD inpatient units and other family support services, including small refrigerators for patient rooms.

In 2008, shortly after his diagnosis, Cam’s community rallied around him and his family at the CHaD HERO. Cam’s Course, a one mile run, was created in honor of Cam’s fight against Leukemia and was a way for Cam’s friends and siblings to make an impact for CHaD kids, no matter their age or ability. That year, Cam was carried over the finish line surrounded by hundreds of family and friends. IT WAS MAGICAL!

Cam being carried over the Cam’s Course finish line by his principal, Jeff Valance.

Fast forward to 2016 and at the age of 17, Cam finished the CHaD HERO half marathon course, and also celebrated 5 years cancer-free! Check out our Facebook page to watch Cam’s inspirational half marathon finish.

Over the years, thousands of kids and adults have completed Cam’s Course and raised over $250,000!  It has become a way for CHaD HEROES of all ages to give back and support CHaD kids.

Above: Cam Marshall and Nini Meyer, CHaD HERO Committee Member and Founder of Positive Tracks, are all smiles during 2016 CHaD HERO half marathon.

In addition to being a CHaD and Positive Tracks Ambassador, this year Cam will represent Hanover in the CHaD High School All-Star Football Game on June 30th at St. Anselm College in Manchester, NH.

The B+ for CHaD Kids movement is operated with the expressed permission of The Andrew McDonough B+ Foundation (

CHaD Patient Gives Back


My name is Rylie.  I am 11 years old and participate in the CHaD HERO to give back for all that CHaD has done for me and continues to do for me.

Me and my team at the 2010 CHaD HERO.

I am a CHaD kid. CHaD has been a part of my life since I was born at Dartmouth- Hitchcock. The kids at CHaD need your help! CHaD is very important to the children in our area and beyond to help us receive the best care without having to travel far away.

Positive Tracks has helped me double my fundraising money to help me fundraise more money for CHaD.

This is a picture of my mom and me running the 5K at the 2016 CHaD HERO. Wonder Woman is my favorite superhero!

Please help me and all who participate in the CHaD HERO fundraiser raise funds for CHaD and all the wonderful things they do and provide for kids.

Thank you,


Registration is OPEN!

Welcome to the CHaD HERO Blog! We’ll keep you informed about all things CHaD HERO and inspire you to leap over even taller buildings to help support CHaD kids.

The 2017 CHaD HERO registration is NOW OPEN! Be sure to register yourself and your team so you can take advantage of reduced registration fees until August 15th.

We have some new and exciting things happening at the CHaD HERO this year!

New for the 2017 CHaD HERO

BIKE: We’re adding a 25 mile bike ride option in addition to the existing 50 mile bike ride. Cyclists will enjoy a picturesque ride through the Upper Connecticut River Valley in near peak foliage season. Learn more here.

HIKE: Discover new trails! Hike either 5 or 8 miles of classic Hanover and Lebanon hiking terrain. The hike will continue to start and finish on the Dartmouth Green. Click here to learn more about the hike.

5K Run & Walk: Some fun family-friendly elements will be incorporated into our 5K course. Stay tuned for more details!

In the coming months we look forward to introducing you to some very special HEROES. We’ll explain their stories and why the CHaD HERO inspires them to bust out their capes.