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Michigan Runner Girl

The Michigan Runner Girl podcast is where you'll find a passion for running crosses paths with a love of living healthy in the beautiful state of Michigan. Runner, mother, writer and lover of all things Michigan Heather Durocher, creator of the running and travel site MichiganRunnerGirl.com, hosts the show, along with regular appearances by fellow Michigan Runner Girls (and Guys). Expect to hear informative and entertaining conversations with runners, race directors and fitness experts throughout Michigan during this weekly show. You'll learn about new races to try and great places to explore on foot. The Michigan Runner Girl podcast is all about living in a state of motion.
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Now displaying: March, 2021
Mar 23, 2021

If you could spend your summer exploring rustic state forest campgrounds all across Michigan — traveling to these scenic spots in both the lower and upper peninsulas by RV, your best four-legged companion joining to keep you company — would you jump at the opportunity? Would you maybe even propose such a trip to your boss? 

Paige Lackey, a Huron Pines AmeriCorps service member serving with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, did just that — she came up with this travel idea and proposed it to her team at the DNR. Why? Paige is an outdoor lover and absolutely passionate about her community and the environment, but this adventure is rooted in something pretty significant and long-lasting for the DNR, too: it's a way to gather important information about rustic state forest campgrounds that ultimately will help make these experiences more accessible for future travelers. 

Paige talks about her upcoming trek around Michigan — she'll be traveling with her dog Willow in a 31-foot RV donated by General RV — and how this is a "woman-powered" adventure. Ami Van Antwerp, communications specialist with the Michigan DNR, also joins the conversation — she's been heavily involved in planning this epic adventure and will be assisting Paige virtually throughout the journey. 

Starting next month and throughout summer, Paige is scheduled to visit 77 rustic state forest campgrounds, collecting data along the way that will be managed and analyzed for use in the DNR's Recreation Search database. The Recreation Search allows visitors to learn more about Michigan state parks and recreation areas (and campgrounds), state forest campgrounds, overnight lodging facilities, nonmotorized trails, park events and much more. This search features filters to search for amenities and activities you are most interested in, such as beaches, equestrian trails, cabins, hiking, mountain biking and others. (More information can also be found at Michigan.gov/StateParks.)

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FIND MRG and HEATHER:

@michiganrunnergirlshow on Instagram

@michiganrunnergirl on Instagram

@michigan-runner-girl on Facebook

Drop Heather a note at heather@michiganrunnergirl.com 

If you enjoy what you’re hearing on the Michigan Runner Girl show, we’d be so, so grateful if you’d take a few moments to write a review on iTunes. This will help more runners and Michigan lovers like yourself find the podcasts. Thank you!! Also, the quickest way to get the podcasts is to subscribe to the show via iTunes or via Stitcher or your favorite podcast app. A special thanks to the talented Jonny Tornga for producing the show.

 

Mar 15, 2021

When we put the call out for questions — the burning questions, running and otherwise — that you wanted to ask Heather and Jonny, who knew you’d ask so many? And that Heather and Jonny’s conversation would go on for as long as it did?! Well, we kind of had a feeling there would be a bunch of questions (the MRG community is awesome like that) and as for Heather and Jonny talking for 2+ hours (yep, true story), that’s basically a given when you get two passionate runners together and time to talk about their favorite sport and all the ways they love staying healthy and active with friends and family here in the Great Lakes State. Truth be told, they probably could have chatted even longer. 

From staying motivated (during COVID times and also at any time, really), getting started as a runner, and finding creative ways to incorporate your favorite meals into your running routine, to searching for (and finding) your next best running friends, figuring out your ideal race training plan, and knowing what fuel is going to work well with you and your body, Jonny and Heather cover it all. They also share memorable running moments they’ll always treasure. Catch up with Heather, founder of MRG, and Jonny, MRG podcast producer, in this latest episode.

FIND MRG and HEATHER:

@michiganrunnergirlshow on Instagram

@michiganrunnergirl on Instagram

@michigan-runner-girl on Facebook

Drop Heather a note at heather@michiganrunnergirl.com 

If you enjoy what you’re hearing on the Michigan Runner Girl show, we’d be so, so grateful if you’d take a few moments to write a review on iTunes. This will help more runners and Michigan lovers like yourself find the podcasts. Thank you!! Also, the quickest way to get the podcasts is to subscribe to the show via iTunes or via Stitcher or your favorite podcast app. A special thanks to the talented Jonny Tornga for producing the show.

 

Mar 2, 2021

“I always like to think that when you have all the freedom in the world, creativity maybe doesn’t come so easily. But when you have constraints placed upon you, that’s when you have to get creative. And that’s what I think happened to the world, to much of the world, in 2020.” ~Joel Gaff, Jr., dad of two, triathlete, and race director, small business owner

Like everybody else this past year, Joel Gaff and his team at race management and timing services company Endurance Evolution were faced with tough decisions about keeping the business going strong. “We were wondering, what can we do? How can we pivot? The whole world was trying to pivot at the same time, which just spawned so many cool new things.”

For Joel, creativity went into overdrive. As tough as things were at times, opportunities began presenting themselves — and Joel decided the time was right to take some leaps. 

Within the past couple of months, he made big changes with Endurance Evolution: the company’s timing services and racing events, including the Traverse City Trail Running Festival, Glen Arbor Solstice Half Marathon and 5K, Traverse City Triathlon, and Sleeping Bear Marathon, were acquired Race Day Events, an event production company in Madison, Wis. “I’m more confident than ever in the long-term success that these events will have, as well as being able to continue to provide first-class timing services to our clients in northwest lower Michigan and beyond,” Joel says.

Joel also launched Traverse City Run Co. a running brand that “celebrates the sun, snow, hills, water, community, and all that makes running in Northern Michigan so special.” 

“I had been wanting to start Traverse City Run Co. for about five or six years, but the time was never ‘right’ to make it happen,” he says. “I was always putting it on the back burner, and never giving the idea the attention it needed.” 

Along with offering “fresh running goods,” Traverse City Run Co. is seeking content ambassadors and eventually will have a run team — Joel is excited to build a community of like-minded individuals. As the website shares, “We are runners of all shapes, sizes, speeds, and abilities. We love to run.  We love Traverse City. We love Michigan.” 

FIND MRG and HEATHER:

@michiganrunnergirlshow on Instagram

@michiganrunnergirl on Instagram

@michigan-runner-girl on Facebook

Drop Heather a note at heather@michiganrunnergirl.com 

If you enjoy what you’re hearing on the Michigan Runner Girl show, we’d be so, so grateful if you’d take a few moments to write a review on iTunes. This will help more runners and Michigan lovers like yourself find the podcasts. Thank you!! Also, the quickest way to get the podcasts is to subscribe to the show via iTunes or via Stitcher or your favorite podcast app. A special thanks to the talented Jonny Tornga for producing the show.

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