Financial planner helps students go the distance with cross country clinics

Elite distance runner Jim Brown is hoping to pass his knowledge and joy of running to students

TUPELO, Miss. (WCBI) – Cross-country running is growing in popularity with all age groups, especially in middle and high school.

That’s why a Tupelo businessman is taking time out from his day job to offer free workshops to help young runners get the edge.

It’s late Monday afternoon and Jim Brown is leading young runners through a cross-country running clinic at the Ballard Park track.

Brown is a financial planner with Modern Woodmen Fraternal Financial and he is also a well-known distance runner. He took up running after his college days playing basketball and now several of his kids are making names for themselves on their school’s cross-country teams.

With tryouts set for this week, Brown offered to lead the running clinics for students.

“We help them with running form, also a little bit about what to eat before and after they run, how to fuel properly, what to drink and not drink before and after they run. And also some core exercises to strengthen their body race strategy, what to wear,” Brown said.

Tupelo High School Boys Head Cross Country Coach David Wheeler, and some cross country runners, are helping with the clinic. Wheeler said the clinic is a big help for those wanting to try out.

“It is so invaluable, so awesome, this is the first time I’ve done a week-long tryout if you will,  but the Browns and some of the guys on the team have really stepped up and filled a void,” Wheeler said.

For Brown, the clinic is also a way to show and tell others about the benefits of running and how to do it the right way.

“I hope they develop a greater knowledge of what running entails. And also, I hope they develop a love for it as well. Some kids will have an opportunity to have a cool team experience, to make incredible friendships,” Brown said.

Timed tryouts for middle school and high school cross-country teams take place Wednesday through Friday. There are two more clinics set this month.

For more information on those free cross-country clinics, call (662)491-0140.

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