Building Champions: Coach Lara Rogers and the Under Armour Mission Run Team

Building Champions: Coach Lara Rogers and the Under Armour Mission Run Team

In the competitive world of track and field, the Under Armour Mission Run Baltimore Distance team has been making waves. Led by Coach Lara Rogers, the women's team has shown remarkable progress and consistency. In a recent episode of the "Runfast Run Forever" podcast, Lara shared insights into her coaching journey, the team's development, and the strategies that have led to their success.

From Collegiate Coaching to Elite Performance

Lara Rogers began her coaching career at Shippensburg University, where she discovered her passion for guiding athletes towards their goals. She then spent eight years at the University of Cincinnati before joining the Under Armour Mission Run Team in 2022. "I didn't know at the time I wanted to be a coach, but just did it to finish my grad degree and I just fell in love with being able to work with athletes that are pursuing their goals and dreams."

Building the Team from the Ground Up

When Lara joined the Under Armour Mission Run Baltimore Distance team, she started with just two athletes. Over the past two years, the team has grown to include five talented women: Ellie Leather, Lydia Oliv, Abby Goldstein, Lauren Ryan, and Courtney Barnes. "It's been a lot of fun building it from the ground up," Lara said, reflecting on the team's journey.

Achieving Success through Consistency

A key factor in the team's success has been consistency. Lara emphasized the importance of staying healthy and maintaining steady progress. "The biggest part for me is just the reward that you get from seeing athletes achieve the best out of themselves," she explained. By focusing on consistent training and smart recovery, the team has seen significant improvements in their performance.

Leveraging the LEVER System

One of the tools that has been instrumental in the team's training regimen is the LEVER system. This innovative device allows athletes to reduce their body weight during runs, minimizing impact and aiding recovery. "Ellie Leather specifically uses that every week for doubles and recovery runs to make sure that we're taking a little bit of weight off but still getting in the volume."

Highlights from the Recent Seasons

The indoor and outdoor seasons have been particularly successful for the team. Ellie Leather set a massive personal best in the 3K, running an 8:54, while Lauren Ryan set a national record for Australia in the 5K with a time of 14:57. "A lot of that was just over time, consistency, and being able to trust in each other," Lara said, attributing their success to the hard work and dedication of the athletes.

Looking Ahead: Olympic Dreams

With the Paris Olympics on the horizon, the team is gearing up for a critical period. Lauren Ryan has already punched her ticket to the Olympics in the 10,000 meters, taking some pressure off and motivating the rest of the team. "Having somebody on the team that's already done that kind of gives them that extra little bit of like, 'Hey, can we do that too this summer?'"

Coach Lara Rogers and the Under Armour Mission Run Team exemplify what can be achieved through dedication, innovation, and a supportive environment. Their journey is a testament to the power of consistency and smart training. As they continue to build towards the Olympics and beyond, their story serves as an inspiration to athletes everywhere.