Sol Sisters, Connecting Friends One Mile at a Time
By Ian Pierce
One of the many benefits of running can be found in the friendships created while pounding the pavement with others.
Dallas runner, Dallas Running Club member, and coach Kelli Foster believes so strongly in the benefit of these connections that she helped found Sol Sisters Run, a movement to connect, empower, and motivate a diverse sisterhood of women through running. Foster says:
“We decided to create Sol Sisters Run because we have connected with so many amazing women through running, training and racing and wanted to create a group with the sole purpose of creating these connections with more runners in D-FW and across the world. Our four leaders of Sol Sisters Run are very diverse in every way, but we all have a common goal…fitness, running and crushing some awesome run goals. That connection created a special bond between us that has now made us all life-long friends.”
Dallas Running Club Supports Sol Sisters Run
Kelli credits the group’s success in part to the support of DRC, its members, and its leadership. Kelli is not only a DRC member, she has served as an RRCA-certified run coach for the club’s 4:20-4:50 marathon pace groups for the past three training seasons. When asked about the DRC, Foster says:
“The DRC leadership and members have been very supportive of our efforts to increase our presence and efforts to increase diversity and awareness of our group in our local running community.”
Many of the Sol Sisters’ leadership and runners are also active DRC runners, including leaders Rachel Embry, Carola Beedle, and Shadetria Weathers. “These three ladies have been on this running rollercoaster with me for the past four years,” Kelli says. “They allow me to talk them into crazy races, fun trips and dope experiences and this is the reason we started Sol Sisters Run.” The four women have completed three marathons together, Los Angeles, Chicago and New York City. Running offers amazing experiences like this, Kelli notes, and whether for a short run or for a marathon, she wants to share the experience. “We want other ladies to be able to have these dope experiences and reach heights that they never even dreamed of reaching… together!”
The Pandemic Can’t Stop Sol Sisters Movement
Sol Sisters began in January 2020, not long before the pandemic shutdown a couple of months later. Nevertheless, the group has adapted, Kelli says.
“Due to the pandemic, we had to pause our weekly runs, but we have close to approximately 50 runners in the DFW area that would come out to the weekly runs. Now with the virtual world being the new norm, we have about 100- members that support our events virtually and have over 750 virtual followers on our social media outlets.”
The group has restarted the weekly runs through a focus on social distancing and safety.
After less than a year in existence, Sol Sisters Run’s membership now encompasses runners from coast to coast. “We have had runners in Illinois, San Francisco, New Jersey — the list goes on — that support us virtually,” Kelli says. “We have initiatives for women, and our goal is definitely to connect women with fitness and running, but we are not limited to just women running and participating. We are definitely inclusive of all and welcome men warmly as well to join the fitness journey through pounding the pavement.”
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