Portland Community College | Portland, Oregon Portland Community College

This content was published: September 4, 2020. Phone numbers, email addresses, and other information may have changed.

Strength Training, Stretching, and Cardio with Runner’s Lab

PCC Community Ed

Instructor Evan Jensen running on backroad in Oregon and posing for a selfie

Chasing finish lines, or just want to stay in shape? Join us for a supportive at-home fitness experience to be a better runner. You’ll workout and learn conditioning, injury prevention, training, race-prep tips and more. All levels welcome!

We recently connected with Runner’s Lab instructor Evan Jensen to learn a little more about what inspired him to form the Runner’s Lab class. Read more below!

Tell us what you’ll do in the class and how you’ll engage the students?

Running is a great way to stay in shape. But there’s also a lot of satisfaction that comes from going for a run, finishing a race, or running for a cause. The right training can help you tackle any distance, develop healthier lifestyle habits, and enjoy every mile. Sure, you’ll have to hustle, sweat, and struggle a little, but it’s worth the effort. In the Runner’s Lab, you’ll join me and other students for a mix of strength training, stretching, and cardio workouts via live video, along with training tips to be a better runner.

Register for Runner’s Lab for: weekly workouts and discussions about running-related topics to help you run far, be strong, and keep going. Outside of class, we’ll continue the conversation in the Runner’s Lab social media group.

What goals will students accomplish in terms of physical and mental health?

We’re creating a welcoming and encouraging environment for new and experienced runners to connect and improve together. Spend 10 weeks in the Runner’s Lab and you’ll learn runner-specific workouts and training tips to:

  • Improve muscular strength, cardiovascular endurance, and flexibility
  • Create your own running workouts and training plans
  • Choose the right shoes and gear
  • Improve nutrition and hydration for better performance
  • Prevent and treat running-related injuries
  • Develop mindset practices to tackle any distance

How long have you been teaching these sorts of classes and why?

Jump in the “Wayback Machine” and dial it back 25 years. That’s when I ran my first 26.2-mile marathon in Park City, Utah and started sharing the lessons I’ve learned from running marathons and ultramarathons. It’s pretty satisfying to point someone in the right direction, watch them do the work, and then accomplish a goal. There’s obvious health benefits to running, but I like to help people recognize running can help you feel better too. More confidence and determination. Better focus. Discipline. Running can do that for you, too.

Evan jensen runners lab lifting

What is it about fitness/running that excites you the most?

There’s kind of like this universal law. You get better, you improve, a little at a time. Take one step, and then another. Running is like that. Start. Try. Keep going, and you’ll get there.

And running is about as simple as it gets. Lace up your running shoes and go. The only person you’re really competing against is yourself. Head out the door to run some miles, and there’s really just one question to think about: Are you physically and mentally strong enough to go the distance?

I love that about running. But even better, if you are physically and mentally strong enough to go the distance, or just brave enough to try, what else can you accomplish in other areas of your life?

Quick Questions

  • Favorite snack: Greek yogurt
  • Favorite treat: Brownies
  • Favorite movie: Karate Kid
  • Average number of running miles per year: 2,000
  • Number of marathons finished: About 40…I’ve lost track
  • Number of ultramarathons finished: 20+ (distances include 50K, 50 miles, and 100 miles)
  • Crosstraining? Yes. Every runner should do this…Lift weights.
  • Longest training run: Mapped out my own 105-mile run from Timothy Lake to Portland, and back to Boring on trails and backroads.
  • Gnarliest run: Once ran the Hunchback Trail from the Salmon River side to the Zig Zag Ranger Station in the middle of the night…during a rain storm. Downed trees, poorly marked trails, steep climbs and descents. It was a lot harder than I expected.

Find the class

  1. Visit pcc.edu/community/schedule
  2. Click on the Fall 2020 Tab
  3. Scroll down to “Sports” and click
  4. Select Runner’s Lab and Register