Katy FIT – Chapter Coaches

Katy FIT Coaches

Katy FIT coaches are ready and here for you to being your training! For any program or season, these coaches will help prepare you for any race!

Ruben Topete

Co-Organizer

After many years of unhealthy sedentary life, I threw away excuses, listened to my wife’s recommendation and started to walk. This was the start of a new journey that later I came to realize would never end. My first goal was to run a half marathon to completion. I started walking 6 miles almost every day and then gradually introduced one mile runs until completely running all 6. This set me up to successfully reach my goal. After a few halfs, I set a new goal, and that was to run a full marathon. This is when I joined USA FIT Katy, as I knew it would be hard on my own. I was introduced to speed and hill work and learned many things regarding the sport of running. After completing my 6th marathon, I became a Coach for the Full marathon group. This created a new goal for me and that was to help others train to successfully and safely go through their journey as well as meeting their goal of completing a full marathon. After my seventh marathon 2019, Mark and I were asked to be Co-organizers of the USA FIT Katy. Even though my journey has been the same for many years, my goals have changed and now it is to help our coaches guide their members through their journey and to meet their goals. I have met and set bonds with some awesome runners at USA FIT Katy during these many years and I look forward in meeting many more. Know your Journey … Change Your Life!

Mark Hendrickson

Co-Organizer

I’ve run 11 marathons and my running history isn’t much different from many other runners.  I ran a few marathons before my kids were born and didn’t get back to committed running until after the kids had grown up and left home.  During my first marathons, I largely trained on my own and I wasn’t aware of such things as wicking running gear or Gu (if they existed at all back in the day).  I’ve run 7 marathons as a member of Katy Fit and, to me, I get equal satisfaction from the workouts/exercise as well as from the social interaction with my fellow runners, many of whom are good friends that I would not have knowns if I hadn’t joined Katy Fit.

Idalia Topete

Head Coach - Half Marathon

Health and Fitness has been part of my life for as long as I can remember. I ran long distance in my junior and high school years and continued to do so for the freedom and accomplishment. The longest I had run was a Half Marathon and all this time I trained on my own. I had never run a Marathon until I heard about USA FIT. I registered with Katy Fit to run “ONE Marathon” and scratch it off my bucket list, but here I am - 11 Marathons later! Katy Fit has held me accountable throughout the years by making me feel that all things are possible. I’ve never met a runner I didn’t like, and this makes me feel like I’m in the right sport which has become my way of life!

Danny Smith

Half Marathon Coach - Run/Walk

My name is Danny Smith and I will help coach the Half Marathon Run/Walk group.

Due to health issues, I became a couch potato. However, during the pandemic, I decided to start running. I haven’t always been a runner and running on my own wasn’t fun. Soon I realized I wasn’t disciplined or committed enough.

Then a friend who was a Katy Fit member, mentioned the club and I decided to join.  Since then, I have completed four half-marathons and several 10K races.

Above all, I found a new family at Katy Fit that supports me and helps me be more disciplined with my running habits and has made it fun.

Jonathan Glover

Head Coach - Full Marathon

I went through my high school and early adulthood - like thinking fitness was for suckers and I was pretty happy being a lazy smoker. It wasn’t until my son began sports that I discovered that I could barely run across the field, and I decided that my fitness level was something I needed to address.

After a few months of getting into the whole running thing, I ran my first 5k and I discovered I really enjoyed the whole race day experience. A few 5K’s and 10K’s later, I set my sights on completing a marathon. I began my training on my own and one day stumbled across KatyFit in the park. That day I went home and signed up online.

Since then, I have completed five full marathons and numerous half marathons. The support of being a part of KatyFit has allowed me and many others to stay focused on the training and helped make running a part of our lives.

Tanya Avery

Full Marathon Coach

This year, I celebrate 10 years running with Katy Fit.

When I first began training for a marathon, I didn't see the need to run with a group.  I enjoyed the solitude of the long runs. After seeing this large group of runners at Terry Hershey Park that were talking, laughing and having fun running, I thought I should join this group. I've learned a lot about running over the years from my coaches and fellow running buddies.  But more importantly, I have made life-long friends by running the long and hard miles on the trail.

2023 will be my 10th Houston Marathon and my 13th overall.  I'm looking forward to a wonderful training season and sharing my experiences with you. My goal for those running the full marathon is to get you to the start line, healthy and prepared for 26.2 miles.  My hope is that after you cross the finish line, you will be forever changed.

“Everything you wanted to know about yourself you can learn in 26.2 miles.”

-Lori Culnane.