ZAP FITNESS RUNNERS TO TRAIN AT
FURMAN UNIVERSITY IN WINTER 2010
Greenville provides milder climate for Olympic hopefuls
February 25, 2009 By: Furman Athletics
GREENVILLE, S.C.—ZAP Fitness, one of the nation’s top training centers for
runners, will bring its elite athletes to Furman University next winter to
train for the Olympics.
Located in the mountains of western North Carolina near Blowing Rock, ZAP
works with both elite and recreational runners. It offers residency
programs for some of the premier post-collegiate runners in the country in
addition to running camps, adult running vacations and programs for
college and high school teams.
“Our winters in Blowing Rock can be pretty rough, so we always look for a
place to go,” said Pete Rea, ZAP’s elite athlete coach.
“After looking at Furman and the training venues available on campus, we
decided to use Greenville and Furman as our winter training site in 2010,”
he said. “Our entire group of Olympic hopefuls will train on and around
Nine or so elite distance runners from ZAP will be in Greenville from
mid-February through most of March in 2010.
They will use campus trails and the Furman golf course for training
routes as well as the greenway that stretches between Greenville and
Travelers Rest. The ZAP runners plan to live at The Vinings apartment
complex adjacent to campus and eat in the Furman dining hall, and they can
take advantage of Furman sports medicine and fitness facilities.
Furman, with its 750-acre campus, was picked as the site of the 1997 and
2001 NCAA Division I cross country championships. The Furman Institute of
Running and Scientific Training has become a resource for information on
everything from nutrition to proper running form.
In 2007, the Blue Shoes Mile fund-raising campaign for Furman’s
collegiate teams brought Alan Webb, the American record-holder in the
mile, to Furman to attempt the first official sub-4-minute mile in South
Carolina. On a cold, windy day in April, the Blue Shoes Mile field
included several ZAP runners, and Webb was successful with a time of
3:57.83 before a crowd of 3,000 cheering fans.
“Furman was particularly appealing not only because its program is very
much on the rise now with new facilities and the Blue Shoes program, but
also because it’s nice for us geographically to be able to train in the
Carolinas,’’ said Rea.
All but one of the athletes on ZAP’s elite runner roster in 2008 made the
Olympic Trials, according to Rea. In recent years, the ZAP runners have
done their winter training at Florida State University in Tallahassee.
Furman officials are excited about the chance to expose the school’s
runners to athletes who are hoping to represent the United States at the
2012 Olympics in London.
“It’s a great opportunity for our student athletes to train alongside
some of the top U.S. runners,” said Furman director of athletics Gary
Clark. “We are excited about developing this partnership with ZAP, one of
the premier training centers in the U.S.”
For more information, contact Furman’s athletic department at