San Jose FIT – Chapter Coaches

San Jose FIT Coaches

San Jose 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! Scroll to look through our full coaches list.

Head Coaches

Your head coaches are the people you should talk to when you have a problem. We're here for you! When your current pace group isn't working out, you can talk to us. We've run many marathons and have been with USA FIT San Jose for many years, so we know the ropes. Find the coach for your color group below:

Georgiana BoewerOrganizer/Purple
Don DickeyRed Head Coach
Adwait SamantYellow Head Coach
Mark ThibertGreen/Blue Head Coach
Gordon YamateGreen/Blue Head Coach
Don WatsonOrange Head Coach

Purple - Walking Coaches

Purple Half Marathon Coaches

The Purple group is for those who walk. The Purple group is out there longer than the other groups so we have more time together for lots of fun on the trail. We have people looking walking exercise to those looking to finish the half marathon distance. Come and join our group!

<15Ronit Katz
16 - 18Curt Wilson
19 - 20Kriba Narasimhan

Purple Exercise Walkers

Exercise WalkerJoy Chism

Green and Blue – 7:00 – 9:00 Marathon Coaches

The Blue marathon group runs between 7:00 and 8:00 minutes per mile and the Green marathon group runs between 8:00 and 9:00 minutes per mile.  Since there are so few groups, we just combine them into one blue/green group. Many of our runners were former runners from the red and yellow groups, and some have had other running experience. We like to to talk and have fun just like the other groups, but we just happen to run a little bit faster. We tend to run a bit more on the weekends, but that just gives us more fun on the trail!

7:00 - 8:00Todd Morimoto
8:00 - 8:15Babu Gopaladhine
8:15 - 8:30Mark Thibert
8:30 - 9:00Gordon Yamate

Yellow – 9:00 – 10:45 Marathon Coaches

The Blue marathon group runs between 7:00 and 8:00 minutes per mile and the Green marathon group runs between 8:00 and 9:00 minutes per mile.  Since there are so few groups, we just combine them into one blue/green group. Many of our runners were former runners from the red and yellow groups, and some have had other running experience. We like to to talk and have fun just like the other groups, but we just happen to run a little bit faster. We tend to run a bit more on the weekends, but that just gives us more fun on the trail!

9:00 - 9:30Ramesh Nair
9:00 - 9:30Jaymin Shah
9:30 - 9:50Michael Silberman
9:30 - 9:50Shannon Thibert
9:50 - 10:10Nat Nataraj
9:50 - 10:10Trevor Vaz
10:10 - 10:45Adwait Samant
10:10 - 10:45Joydeep Chakravarti
10:10 - 10:45Ramana Reedy

Red – 10:45 – 15:00 Marathon Coaches

The Red group runs between 10:45 and 15:00 minutes per mile. We do run/walk to keep your legs fresh so that you're sure to finish the entire 26.2 miles. Most marathoners start in the red group and many stay because we're so much fun. We love to talk and we love to run!

10:45 - 11:30Bill Dumonthier
10:45 - 11:30Amy Schaumburg
10:45 - 11:30Paul Wcislo
11:30 - 12:00Don Dickey
11:30 - 12:00Sean Mackin
11:30 - 12:00Roy Henninger
12:00 - 12:30Paula Goldman
12:00 - 12:30Linda McLean
12:30 - 13:30Irene Bunner
13:30 - 15:00German Bauer
13:30 - 15:00Tara Nelakanti
FLOATMarathon - Terry Ridgway

Orange – Half Marathon Coaches

The Orange Half Marathon Coaches run between 8:00 and 15:30 minutes per mile. If you are feeling intimidated about running a full marathon, are injured and want to run a shorter distance, or just prefer the half marathon distance, join our great Orange coaches!

Tangerine Half Marathon Coaches

8:00 - 9:00David Collins
9:00 - 10:00Jess Ferro
10:00 - 10:30Kim Ferro
10:00 - 10:30Jessica Ponce
10:30Teri Pierce
10:30Mithun Harkara
10:30 (straight run)Rose Lara
10:30 - 11:00 (6/1)Sharon Keegan
10:30 - 11:00 (6/1)Daiyana Constantino
10:30 - 11:00 (6/1)Jagan Satagopan

Orange Half Marathon Coaches

11:00 - 11:30Tushar Kothalkar
11:30 - 12:00John Van Schaick
10:00 - 10:30Hope Van Schaick
12:00 - 12:30 (6/1)Don Watson
12:00 - 12:30 (6/1)Becky Bender
12:00 - 12:30 (6/1)Sharadaa Srinivasan
12:30 - 13:00VV (Thirumalai) Thathachary
13:00 - 15:30Sandra Prietz
13:00 - 15:30Surekha Pol
13:00 - 15:30Kim Bozsony

Other Program Coaches

We do various programs here at USA FIT San Jose. If you're looking for the coach for one of these areas, you can find us below:

Amy SchaumburgNews/Social Media
George MountWebmaster
Mark ThibertTrack
Fernanda Perdomo-ArciniegasCore
Arnon AmirATP
Lara LewisATP

Head Coaches

Georgiana Boewer

Organizer and Purple Head Coach (Acting)

I started running with San Jose Fit in 2002. Since then I’ve run many marathons, half marathons, trail runs and fun-runs. I’m also a yearly walker and supporter for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. A firm believer in the philosophy ‘no runner/walker left behind’, I ensure every runner crosses the finish line.  I attribute my long association with running and San Jose Fit to the incredible bonds I’ve forged with my co runners/walkers over the years.

Don Dickey

Red Head Coach

Pace: 11:30 - 12:00 I have been a runner most of my life but never ran more than 5 miles at one time until joining San Jose Fit in 2006. In 2006, I ran my first 10K, my first two half marathons, and my first marathon at the age of 50. I could not have run my first marathon without the support of my friends at San Jose Fit or any of the marathons or ultras since. I started coaching in 2009, and it has been a lot of fun watching new runners succeed at their first marathon. Since 2006, I have run five 10K’s, 13 half marathons, ten marathons, one marathon relay, two 50K’s, one 50 miler and countless miles in training.

Adwait Samant

Yellow Head Coach

Pace: 10:10 - 10:45 Never having run a single mile in my life, I started treadmill running in 2004 with the simple goal of losing a few pounds and instantly got hooked. But even after running regularly in the gym for years, I could never run more than 6 miles, and it all changed when I joined San Jose Fit. With experienced and passionate coaches, “training to suit your needs,” and the amazing comrades I met at San Jose Fit, I have completed 77 Half, 41 Full, 9 50K, one 55K, one 50M, and two 100K races. Mumbai, Tahoe Triple, and Night Sweat Trail are my favorite races & Rancho San Antonio, Castle Rock, and Mission Peak are my favorite trails. My advice to new runners is – cherish your success at every mile. No one can describe the feeling of crossing the finish line; you have to experience it yourself. Come, join us and experience it!!!

Mark Thibert

Green/Blue Head Coach
Pace: 8:15 - 8:30

I started running with San Jose Fit in 2011. I ran my first marathon that year. I thought it was going to be a "bucket list" thing that I could check off my list and be done with it. Little did I know that training for and running that one marathon would lead me to run a few more marathons and three 50K trail races. I was an assistant coach for the blue group in 2015 and I learned a lot from that experience. Mostly, I learned that I need to slow down in order to improve my time over the 26.2 miles. I hope to share my experiences and encourage others to start, or keep on running whatever distance. Oh, and I coach the track program where I encourage people to run as fast as they can, but for way shorter distances. It all adds up!

Gordon Yamate

Green/Blue Head Coach

Pace: 8:30 - 9:00 / mile I’ve been running off and on since high school when I ran cross country (but not very well in those days). My distance running improved as I got older (more discipline), and now I attribute my good health to running and realize it’s a priority rather than an extracurricular activity when I have time. I’ve run seven marathons—San Francisco Mayor’s Cup, Big Sur, Chicago, NYC (2), Sacramento, and Boston. I plan to run Sacramento again—it’s a great BQ course. Christine Kennedy at Athletic Performance recommended that I join SJFit for marathon training. That was great advice—it’s a lot easier putting in the long miles when others were counting on you to be there. This will be my fifth year with SJFit, where I’ve met a lot of great runners. When I was younger, I did experience the beta endorphins kicking in. Today, I tell people that the best part of running is when you’re done.

Don Watson

Orange Head Coach

Pace: 12:00 - 12:30 min / mile I started running with San Jose Fit in 2000 because I saw this group of people running by my house in their underwear each Saturday morning and thought “WOW! What a bunch of loonies! My kind of people!”. Seriously, my goal is always to get every runner through the training program and to the start line healthy and ready to run. Once they “toe it up” at the start line, they will KNOW that they can “Git er Done!”. Each year I see people cross the finish line in their first half or full marathon and I know that this group of coaches and their fellow runners combined to make a very memorable “first” in that person’s life. That’s why I enjoy this group every year.

Purple - Walking Coaches

Ronit Katz

Purple 15:00 Pace Coach

I did my first full marathon, the Maui Marathon, in 2002. I have been with San Jose Fit since 2009 and completed both full and half marathons with them. I have been an assistant coach since 2010. My walking pace 12.45 to 14 minutes per mile depending on the distance. I am looking forward to coaching this year and helping people accomplish their goals.

Curt Wilson

Purple 16:00 – 18:00 Pace Coach

Biker, Runner, Walker. I learned to run before learning how to be a walker. I was hooked after a friend talked me into running a 4 mile race between Saratoga and Los Gatos. During the following years I ran over 50 10K’s and over 25 half marathon’s. My first full marathon was the beautiful Avenue of the Giants marathon. Other marathons include Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Marine Corp, and London. After running 12 marathons, I now enjoy walking. Walking keeps me in shape for hiking mountain trails and back packing in the Sierra’s. Biking is my favorite cross training activity. I joined Austin Fit in 1997, moved to San Jose and joined San Jose Fit when it started in 1998. The friendly runners/walkers at SJ Fit plus the great training keeps me coming back for more.

Kriba Narasimhan

Purple 19:00 – 20:00 Pace Coach

I didn't think about Changing my Life but San Jose Fit did! Came to know about it through my friends and joined in 2015. I started discovering myself with just simple walking, the potential within me, which gave me the confidence to try out far-reaching things in life. I completed my first marathon in 2017! This will be my fifth year and I enjoy the walk with other Fitters. I walk at a pace that is comfortable for me and I encourage everyone to do so. Find your pace and enjoy it! 19-20 mins. Looking forward to meeting new Fitters this year and making new friends!

Joy Chism

Purple Exercise Walkers Pace Coach

I started running in high school when our cross country coach let 7 girls join the boys cross country team since there was not a girls league at the time.  I continued to run for fun during college, as it helped me deal with stress.   After college I ran less as life got busy with work and family.   In my late 30’s I took up running again.   I did several 10k’s and then decided to try a half marathon.   But I did not train properly and it was a disaster since I did absolutely everything wrong.  I then came across a sign in the window of a Los Gatos shop advertising San Jose Fit and decided to join. That was in 2003.   I ran and coached until 2012 when I had to have knee surgery. After healing from my surgery,  I broke my foot and had to take another year off from SJ Fit. The doctor advised that I should not run anymore.  So in 2014 I came back as a walker.   I found out that you can still get a great work out walking.  Hope to see you all out there!

Green and Blue – 7:00 – 9:00 Marathon Coaches

Todd Morimoto

Blue 7:00 – 8:00 Pace Coach

I joined SJ Fit about six years ago, and discovered a herd (family of runners with a shared vision). SJ Fit has inspired me in life & running. I have run Boston Marathon six times. My best marathon in 3:08 in CIM. My goal is to run 70 marathons by end of this year, then continue on to run 100 marathons by the time I am 60. I would like to run under 3 hours for the marathon. I want to share my running wisdom gained over my 20 years of wisdom – literally earned by blood, sweat, and tears.

Babu Gopaladhine

Green/Blue 8:00 – 8:15 Pace Coach

I have been with SJFit since 2015, running with the Blue/Green group. SJFit community has helped make running a lifestyle choice, not just for physical and mental fitness. I have learnt a great deal from my coaches and other experienced runners in group. I completed the six marathon majors when I ran Tokyo Marathon in 2018. I am truly blessed to have family and friends who helped me raise more than $20K for various charities. It has been a fulfilling and satisfying achievement. I am happy to share my experiences, to help fellow runners reach their goals.

Yellow – 9:00 – 10:45 Marathon Coaches

Ramesh Nair

Yellow 9:00 – 9:30 Pace Coach

I started running with SJFit in 2007 and have been coaching various Yellow marathon pace groups since 2010. When I joined SJFit my goal was simple – be able to consistently run a few miles past the couple of miles I could then manage. As for a full marathon, well wouldn’t that be nice! Here’s an update. From a Red 12:00-12:30 min run/walk marathon pace group I’ve steadily progressed to now coach the Yellow 9:00-9:30 min marathon pace group. During this time, I’ve run several half-marathons and marathons (frankly, I lost count!) with every run memorable in its own way. Along the way I discovered a love for running trail ultras having done several 50K’s like Way Too Cool and Skyline to the Sea, the AR 50 miler and as recently as February 2018 I ran my longest, the Tarawera 102K Ultra in amazing New Zealand. This is just one example of what SJFit can inspire you to achieve, whether your goals are modest or ambitious. I’m passionate about coaching and pacing others to help them achieve their running goals. Join us and talk to other fitters and listen to their accomplishments while making new friends and running buddies. I’m always eager to listen to your running stories while sharing my own. My advice to new runners is to be safe and have fun. Ok, enough said, get your shoes on and let’s go for a run!

Jaymin Shah

Yellow 9:00 – 9:30 Pace Coach

I always wanted to run but never found the motivation to do so. I would work out at the gym but running outside was a challenge for me. But in 2014 when my son was born I decided I need to set an example for him. I started running 2-3 miles on my own! Soon I realized I need more guidance to run half and full marathons. That’s when I found about Sanjose fit! Their training plan, encouragement and seminar guidance were amazing. I still remember coach Kelly and coach Lara walking with me after my very first marathon! That day I realized the importance of good coaching. And now I have this opportunity to guide someone crosses the finish line for the first time!! I have run 20 half marathon and 11 full marathon and 1 50k. Big Sur is my most favorite marathon. I am excited to be part of the coaching team and want to provide with same support and coaching I have received

Michael Silberman

Yellow 9:30 – 9:50 Pace Coach

Running was never something I wanted to do for fun. Until, I met a young lady when I was in High School that ran marathons. Then I wanted to run as far as a fast as she could to impress her. That didn’t work out, but I loved the feeling of running long distances. During college I ran a few times a week from West Vally College to IBM on Cottle Road to get to work. Until 2008 I had never trained for an organized running event. While training with SJ Fit in 2008 through 2012 I ignored the coaching and continued to get injured just before completing an event. Giving up all hope until 2014 of being a Marathon runner. I did complete one Half Marathon in 2012. I rejoined SJ Fit in 2014 thanks to my wife and volunteered to coach in a Half Marathon group as a sweep to force myself to go slower, walk, and listen to the coaching. Now I’ve run several Half Marathons and at least 3 Marathons without injury before getting to the start line. I love running and helping others to achieve their goal to run.

Shannon Thibert

Yellow 9:30 – 9:50 Pace Coach

Before joining San Jose Fit in 2010, my longest run had been less than 5 miles. The idea of running a marathon seemed crazy, but I was a little curious about training for a half marathon.  On the day of the San Jose Fit orientation, I intended to sign up with the half marathon training group, but at the last minute I decided to get crazy and just try training for a full marathon.  I still recall the excitement of each new distance we achieved that first year of training.  Since then I have successfully completed 10 marathons, 5 50ks, and too many half marathons to count.  I am grateful for all of the friendships, knowledge and inspiration I have gained by joining San Jose Fit.  Being part of this community of runners helps motivate me to get out of bed for morning runs, train consistently, and achieve goals that I previously did not think were possible.  I look forward to sharing my experience to help you successfully achieve your running goals and enjoy the journey along the way.

Nat Nataraj

Yellow 9:50 – 10:10 Pace Coach

I have been running with San Jose Fit since 2012. San Jose Fit provides an excellent and flexible training platform that accommodates a multi-pace Walking and Running program. I enjoy running and look forward to the Saturday long runs. I have been pacing the 9:50 – 10:10 pace group and I usually mix in some walk/run intervals on longer runs. I have completed over 15 Marathons, Half- Marathon and a couple of ultra distances ( 50K & 50mile) since 2012.

Trevor Vaz

Yellow 9:50 – 10:10 Pace Coach

I joined San Jose Fit in 2013. My goal was to check off a bucket list item – to complete a full marathon before I turned 50. After completing my first marathon, I was hooked and I continued with San Jose Fit and participated in many other races. Through the years with San Jose Fit, I received a lot of help, encouragement and training for which I am very grateful. This year I volunteered to coach for the first time. Running for me is like meditation. My mind is serene and calm while my body is outdoors getting its exercise. I view running as a competition with oneself. There will always be runners faster than you and who can run longer than you. What matters is how well you are doing relative to where you were. San Jose Fit provides an excellent structure and coaching to help you improve your running capabilities.

Joydeep Chakravarti

Yellow 10:10 – 10:45 Pace Coach

I am from Mumbai and Kolkata, Alberta and Ottawa, Santa Clara and Cupertino. The San Jose Fit program, coaches and participants have made a huge positive impact on me. Simply put - I am always happy now. I have gained mental strength, confidence and I almost never get flustered. The only thing I have lost are pounds and a few eating habits. Best of all I have gained friends I will keep for this lifetime.

Ramana Reddy

Yellow 10:10 – 10:45 Pace Coach

Hello Everyone! Prior to joining SJ FIT running 5K was a biggest challenge for me. I joined SJ FIT in 2014 and ran my First Half Marathon in October, 2014 and have been continuing since then with SJFIT and successfully completed multiple Marathons and Half Marathons. San Jose Fit provides an excellent and flexible training program that accommodates all (Walkers, Slow Runners & Speed Runners) pace groups where you no need to worry about your current pace. I enjoy running in group and always look forward to the Saturday long runs and Monday Hill Runs.

Red – 10:45 – 15:00 Marathon Coaches

Bill Dumonthier

Red 10:45 – 11:30 Pace Coach

I joined San Jose Fit in 2003 and started as an assistant coach in 2004.  I have run 21 marathons and 44 ultra marathons.  In 2015, I completed my longest race (101.2 miles) at age 63.  San Jose Fit has made me a more consistent runner.  I am looking forward to another great season!

Amy Schaumburg

Red 10:45-11:30 Pace Coach & News & Social Media

Pace: 10:45 - 11:30 I joined San Jose Fit in 2011, having never run a race of any distance. Eight fabulous years later, I have finished 25+ half marathons, 17 full marathons, 4 ultramarathons and 2 half ironman triathlons. Finishing races is fun, but training with a team is where the real magic is for me. I have met the most wonderful, entertaining and inspiring people running up and down the Los Gatos Creek Trail. The best thing I have ever done for myself was to start running - "Each step makes me stronger."

Paul Wcislo

Red 10:45 – 11:30 Pace Coach

Red Team – Pace Intervals: 6 minutes run/1 minute walk. I worked for the firm that started the Chicago Marathon, did a promotion for a client sponsoring the 1st U.S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials in 1984, and ran my first marathon in Paris 1987 where my longest distance was 6 miles. No kidding! It took me 7 more marathons to beat that time. I introduced my four brothers to marathons in 1994 when we all completed the New York City Marathon. My twin, Dave, and I completed marathons in all 50 states in 2014. We ran the Mt. Kilimanjaro Marathon in June 2018 after climbing the 19,000+ foot mountain the day prior. Only three more continents left to complete all 7. I’m scheduled to run Berlin Marathon in September, which will complete 4 of the 6 Majors – only London and Tokyo remain. Most exotic marathon: Great Wall of China Hardest: Pike’s Peak Most fun: Anyone with family, now that my sister has begun. Come live the adventure with me.

Sean Mackin

Red 11:30 – 12:00 Pace Coach

I ran on and off for years, but never seriously.  Then I trained for and completed my first marathon in 2007 after dropping 40 pounds.  I joined San Jose Fit the next year.  Along the way,  I realized that running is my meditation, and helps me stay calm in a hectic environment.  I've completed 11 full marathons and more half marathons,  and still feel passionate about running.  I coach because I enjoy the moment when each runner comes to the realization the he or she has the strength and determination to complete a full marathon.

Roy Henninger

Red 11:30 – 12:00 Pace Coach

2018 will be year #4 for me with San Jose Fit. So far I have run (completed may be more factually accurate) 4 marathons. This will be my first year coaching for San Jose Fit. I have previously coached youth soccer, and although the crossover between soccer and running may not be immediately obvious, if you are in my group it is something we can explore together. But if at any point I start yelling at the ref I want you to know where I’m coming from. My philosophy of coaching is that the most important thing is not getting to the finish line. The most important thing is getting to the start line. Once there, might as well finish, no?

Paula Goldman

Red 12:00 – 12:30 Pace Coach

Red Team – Pace: 12:00 – 12:30  - Intervals: 90 seconds run/30 seconds walk.

This is my 15th year running with San Jose Fit. I’ve coached for the past 7 years. I never thought I could run a marathon but with the support and terrific coaching, ran my first marathon at the age of 56 and have run 27 marathons and numerous other races since. This year I ran my first ultra-marathon (55K) at the age of 70! It was an amazing experience. If you join our team, you will not only have fun but you will make great friends along the way! CHANGE YOUR LIFE AND HAVE FUN AT THE SAME TIME!

Linda McLean

Red 12:00 – 12:30 Pace Coach

Red Team - Pace 12:00-12:30. Intervals: 90 seconds run / 30 seconds walk. I started running with San Jose Fit in 2009. My intention was to run a half marathon before I turned 50 the following year. With the help and guidance from the coaches I was able to run a full marathon and numerous half marathons before my 50th birthday. They believed in me more than I did. Having a cheerleading squad of coaches is priceless. I look forward to coaching this season

Tara Nelakanti

Red 13:30 – 15:00 Pace Coach

Red Team – Pace: 13:30 – 14:30 min a mile - Intervals: 60 seconds run/60 seconds walk. This is my 4th year running with San Jose Fit. I started coaching last year and so happy to return back this year 2019! I started running in Fall of 2015. Before that I never ran a mile in my life. Never believed that I could run a mile. After joining San Jose Fit in 2016, I finished 6 half marathons, one full marathon, and two relays (191 miles).  I am so excited to train/pace-coach with Red team, my favorite 13:30 to 14:30 min a mile group (1 min run 1 min walk) With this pace group you can easily finish a marathon injury-free with joy, love, and peace. My slogan is: "If I could run, anyone can run!!"

German Bauer

Red 13:30 – 15:00 Pace Coach

Have been with San Jose Fit since 2014. I am not fast by any standards — running is joy for me, as it is meditative quality time for mind and body. I am far from my best form but San Jose Fit’s methodology and coaching is a great way to get used to go the distance, with the goal of staying injury free throughout the training season. When it comes to race day it feels like harvesting the work you did with all of during the season. I also enjoy riding my bike and did a few triathlons in the past. We will run in 1min run : 1min walk intervals and this is a great technique to extend yourself to distances you never thought you’d be able to cover. You got this!

Terry Ridgway

Red Pace Coach (float)

I’ve been running with San Jose fit since the first season in 1998. Along the way I’ve taken some time out to do other things, but I’m back again to have fun with everyone again, this year. Back in 1998, I thought this would be a one time event. That I’d run my one marathon and that would be it. Cross it off my bucket list and be done. How wrong I was. Since then I’ve completed 48 marathons ( I’ll complete numbers 49 and 50 this season ) along with sixteen 50k runs, three 50 mile runs, and 40 half marathons.

Irene Bunner

Red 12:30 – 13:30 Pace Coach

I have finished one 50k and many marathons.

Orange – Half Marathon Coaches

VV (Thirumalai) Thathachary

Orange 12:30 – 13:00 Pace Coach

I was introduced to SJFit by a friend in 2017 and was asked to just give a try. Initially I was bit nervous regarding injuries etc., but the professional advice and the training I got from the coaches at SJFit allayed those fear and my inhibition with running. The support and encouragement that I received from SJFit family members were so excellent that I keep looking forward every year for the season to start and without such help and training environment I could not have successfully completed so many half-marathons in the last two years. SJFit has a great training program and convenient schedules and accommodates everybody, including walkers, with their flexible pace grouping. I enjoy running with SJFit group and always look forward for Saturday and Monday practices.

Kim Bozsony

Orange 13:00 – 15:30 Pace Coach

I run because it makes me feel free and happy. Going down memory lane, I can recall when I first started. Not being an athlete, a friend of mine asked me several years back to go for a run with her and the San Jose Fit running group. My response was, “Say what?! Are you crazy?! I don’t run.” Well, the rest is history. I joined Team In Training shortly after that. They coached me to completing my first marathon. I have now finished a total of four marathons, and I’m happy with that. I’ve done many half marathons, 10Ks and 5Ks.. Everyone is motivated to exercise in many different ways. Mine, is to just cross the finish line. Here’s a saying that I like, “Run Often, Run Long, But Never Outrun Your Joy of Running.” By Julie Isphording.

Surekha Pol

Orange 13:00 – 15:30 Pace Coach

Hello everyone! I joined sjfit in 2017 and ran my first Half Marathon in October 2017. I have always enjoyed running since my childhood. I was a 100 and 200 meters sprinter in highschool then turned into more of an endurance runner in college. Running stopped for a while after I entered the profession of Physical Therapy where many other forms of exercise took over. One of them is Yoga and now I am certified and use it in my practice. Overall, exercise has been my passion which is why I enjoy Physical Therapy where I can combine my experience and knowledge to help myself and others. San Jose fit has great coaching and I would love to contribute in whatever way I can while learning from each one of you. Thank you for giving me such a wonderful platform and opportunity!

Sandra Prietz

Orange 13:00 – 15:30 Pace Coach

Running is an exercise for both, the mind and the body. It is about finding out what you can achieve and who you can become! I have been involved with distance running for over 15 years.  My experience comes from running a variety of 10k races, half and full marathons. In my role as running coach with San Jose Fit, I will be there for you along the way, offering support and guidance – so you can reach your personal goals or your personal best!

Sharadaa Srinivasan

Orange 12:00 – 12:30 Pace Coach

Started running with San Jose Fit in 2009. Did my first full marathon in 2010. Have done several half marathons ever since. Love running mainly because of Sanjose fit training as I was brand new to running when I started with them. So wonderful to see how it creates so many passionate running and create love for running. I am excited to assist with coaching this year.

Becky Bender

Orange 12:00 – 12:30 Pace Coach

Are you intimidated by how many marathons and half marathons all these coaches have run? Don’t be! I was in your shoes once. I was definitely not a natural born runner. The thought of running any distance only inspired me to take a nap! Run a marathon? Are you kidding? Furthermore, I started running very late in life. Never mind. Now people assume I’ve been running all my life! (Yeah right – if they only knew!) If I can do it, almost anyone can. I’m living proof. Come on out and have fun with us! Our goal is to provide you with the support you need to achieve whatever goal you set for yourself – and to have lots of fun along the way. And in case you are wondering if anything qualifies me to be a coach, I have completed 7 full marathons and countless half marathons. But who is counting anyway?

Hope Van Schaick

Orange 11:30 – 12:00 Pace Coach

I joined San Jose Fit in 2015. Last year I completed the San Jose Rock and Roll half Marathon. I have my 200 hour yoga certification from Yoga Source. This year I will be the Orange 11:30-12:00 pace coach along with my husband John.

Daiyana Constantino

Orange 10:30 – 11:00 Pace Coach

This is my 5th year running and my second year co-coaching. I started by walking for stress relieve. Completed my first half marathon walking. Then my second year I decided to challenge myself and moved up to running. Even with the challenges of a new baby, I found that I enjoyed my run/walk group. I completed my second half marathon running. Now, I have no excuse. If I did it with a new baby, I have no excuse to keep my self-motivated.
​As a result, I have completed many 5k & 10k’s and  a few 1/2 marathons. I have encouraged many of my friends and family members to join me in being active.

John Van Schaick

Orange 11:30 – 12:00 Pace Coach

John first ran with San Jose Fit in 1999. He has since completed 7 marathons and 2 1/2 marathons. This is his 3rd year as a San Jose Fit coach.

Tushar Kothalkar

Orange 11:00 – 11:30 Pace Coach

Tushar is an entrepreneur, IT professional staying in Bay Area for past 20 years. During school days Tushar was a short distance sprint runner. Tushar was introduced to SJFIT by coach Adwait. Tushar's love for running and SJFIT is incredible, that is why in spite of getting seriously injured during one of the races, he quickly came back to coach new fitters using incredible knowledge he acquired during his runs with SJFIT.

Jagan Satagopan

Orange 10:30 – 11:00 Pace Coach

I have been running with San Jose Fit’s Half Marathon group since 2011. I regularly run in San Jose Rock and Roll and Morgan Hill races along with our group and have completed nearly 10 Half Marathons. I am excited to join and assist Sharron and Daiyana in coaching our group this year.

Rose Lara

Orange 10:30 (run only) Pace Coach

I joined SJ Fit in 2015. Although I had been running on and off for 10+ years (and had run 2 marathons), I took a few years off and was looking to join a group that would motivate me to be consistent. Joining the group has been a great experience. It’s great to meet up with a group of people who share the same enjoyment of running and accomplishing a goal. I have also learned a lot of useful tips and tricks along the way.

Sharon Keegan

Orange 10:30 – 11:00 Pace Coach

I joined SJ Fit the first year it was formed and ran my first Marathon with the group. I was extremely impressed how the group got me, a non-runner at the time, through the training program and gave me the tools to complete the Marathon. I have been with the group on and off since then and started coaching when the 1/2 marathon group was formed. I have coached both the straight runs and run walk styles. I have embraced the run walk style after a few running injuries and find it works the best for me. The pace group I coach is a 6:1 with a 10:30 - 11:00min mile average pace. Over the years I have run 1 marathon and about 30 or so half marathons and too many 10ks and 5ks to count. I look forward to a fun 2016 season and meeting new runners!Set featured image

Mithun Harkara

Orange 10:30 Pace Coach

I started running with San Jose Fit in 2016. My original aim was to be able to run at least one half marathon. I have finished 6 half marathons since then, and that’s thanks to San Jose Fit. It provides an ideal environment, with a supportive and encouraging group of people, that are passionate about running. As a coach this year I hope to help others like me achieve their goals.

Teri Pierce

Orange 10:30 Pace Coach

I joined SJFit in 1998. I showed up at LGHS by myself not knowing what to expect. That October, I became a marathoner. And, the journey was just as rewarding as the event.

In 2008 SJFit expanded to include the half marathon program. It’s an excellent fitness program and our target race is San Jose Rock n Roll.

The best part about SJFit is the mix of new runners with veteran runners. We support and encourage each other.

So lace up your shoes and join us. Everyone is welcome.

The half marathon……..

half the distance, twice the fun!

Kim Ferro

Orange 10:00 – 10:30 Pace Coach

I joined San Jose Fit six years ago with a friend not really knowing what I was getting myself into, I never even ran more than 2 miles. With the support of my awesome pace coach (Teri), and the friends I made on the trail, I completed my first half! As many runners do, I caught the itch, and signed up for more and more races to beat my personal goals! Since then I’ve completed over 15 half marathons and my first FULL marathon in Oct 2015. Now that I’m a coach, I get to help others accomplish their own personal goals.

Jessica Ponce

Orange 10:00 – 10:30 Pace Coach

I joined SJ FIT in 2017, this will be my first season as a coach. I have been running since high school and continued through college on the cross country team. I decided to join SJ Fit because of the team environment. It is easier to stay consistent with your running goals and more fun when you have a group of running buddies to keep you accountable. I am looking forward to a great season!

Jess Ferro

Orange 9:00 – 10:00 Pace Coach

David Collins

Orange 8:00 – 9:00 Pace Coach

I was an active, competitive runner for short distances from high school until my thirties. I picked up running again about 5 years ago, and have completed 15 half marathons, with times ranging from a 9 minute mile to a 7 minute mile. For me, running is a great way to stay active, push myself, and connect with others who are looking to do the same.

Other Program Coaches

Lara Lewis


I started running with San Jose Fit in 2002. Since then I’ve run many marathons, half marathons, trail runs and fun-runs. I’m also a yearly walker and supporter for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer. A firm believer in the philosophy ‘no runner/walker left behind’, I ensure every runner crosses the finish line.  I attribute my long association with running and San Jose Fit to the incredible bonds I’ve forged with my co runners/walkers over the years.

Arnon Amir


I joined San Jose Fit in 2002 and soon ran my first half at the San Francisco Marathon. I was thrilled! Since then I have run the San Francisco marathon every year, half or full. I started coaching in 2005, was head coach (2007-12) and organizer (2013-14). In 2011 I started coaching the Advanced Training Program (ATP) – Light, which is a funny name for training really hard to run “effortless”. My most special marathon was the 2010 Athens Classic Marathon, following Pheidippides’s original course (the 2500th Anniversary!) from Marathonas to Athens, finishing at the Panathinaikon Olympic stadium. But what really changed my life is all the friends I made in SJF, who support me along this journey. See you on the trails.

George Mount


I started running with San Jose Fit in 2002 with the yellow 9 minute/mile group and finished my first marathon that year. Since then, I’ve run well over 30 marathons and 5 or so 50km races. I started coaching in 2004 and my wife, Zoë, joined shortly after that so that she wouldn’t be a marathon widow. Now we both leave the kids at home on Saturdays and get a little time away from being parents. However, you give me the slightest clue, I’ll yack your ear off about kids! These days I only run occasionally with San Jose Fit on Saturdays, but you may see me coaching anywhere between 7:30 and 8:45 pace. However, I rarely miss the Monday hill runs, the best part of training, so I’ll see you at Rancho! I also tend the website, so if you see an issue, please email me. My PR is marathon is 3:24 and I’m aiming to qualify for the Boston Marathon sometime in the next two years.

Fernanda Perdomo-Arciniegas

Core Training

Coach Fernanda, San Jose Fit’s Core Class Fernanda Perdomo-Arciniegas started running in 2017 after the death of her mother in August as a way to cope with the grief of her absence. Running gave her peace, solace, and the time to remember her mother but also contributed to increased pain on her knees, lower back, and hips. So after suffering through two really painful 10K, she followed the advice of her friends, and looked online for a running club to help her out. That is how in April of 2018, she learned about San Jose Fit and immediately joined. During the 7-months plus of San Jose Fit training, Fernanda learned running techniques from her coaches and team mates. She also started reading more about conditioning, strengthening, and proper nutrition. Thanks to all these efforts, Fernanda's knee/hip/back pain is gone and only the soreness of a good run stays with her. As  San Jose Fit’s Core Class Coach, she will be sharing all she has learned with you so you can enjoy running as much as she does. Fernanda is a proud single mother who has two strong, smart and beautiful daughters, ages 18 and 9.

David Pulvino

David had been with San Jose Fit since 2001 and is dearly missed by his friends here.