Steamboat’s Elevate Mountain Running Camp shows students a greater meaning to running |

Steamboat’s Elevate Mountain Running Camp shows students a greater meaning to running

Athletes in the Elevate Mountain Running Camp running the Spring Creek trail on Friday, July 15.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Running through the mountains is about more than just staying in shape. While it is a great form of exercise, it can also be used as a way to clear your mind and test your limits. 

Steamboat Springs High School head cross country coach Lisa Renee Tumminello buys into that concept and tries to instill it in her students.

“It’s not just about running, but how we can make them better human beings or dream bigger or think bigger,” Tumminello said.

Along with Colorado Springs running coach, Jeremy Strom, Tumminello has created the Elevate Mountain Running Camp to further their approach on running and give their athletes an opportunity to experience something they have never experienced before. 

The camp means a lot to the kids who range from middle school all the way to freshmen in college. 

Alex Hanna, a junior at Steamboat Springs High School, loves the family environment that the camp creates and uses it as an opportunity to see her friends year-round.

“I’ve been on the team the past two years, it’s really grown to be sort of my family and I try to get every chance I can just to be with them. This camp is a great way to keep being with them throughout the year and through the summer,” Hanna said.

Elevate Mountain Running Camp’s athletes finishing their morning run on the Spring Creek trail on Friday, July 15.
Tom Skulski/Steamboat Pilot & Today

The camp brings in a lot more than just Steamboat Springs runners. There are athletes representing many areas of Colorado and several other states including Texas, Georgia, Iowa, Utah and Wyoming. 

Kairi Bruck, a freshman from a Texas High School, came to the camp to challenge herself and learn new techniques that she can bring back to her hometown team. 

No matter the amount of training, it takes some time for these out of state athletes to get acclimated to the altitude difference that comes with Steamboat. It’s a total change of pace for them, but an experience they can hold with them forever.

“I really love this town and running on these trails. I run Ditch Loop like three or four times a week when I’m at home. It’s cool getting to share these trails with other people and run with friends and get closer with the cross country team,” Trevor Harms said, a senior at Steamboat High School.

The athletes moved into the dorms at Colorado Mountain College on Wednesday, July 13, and stayed until Sunday, July 17. The camp began immediately after arrival.

The agenda is filled with runs at places like Howelsen Hill, Buff Pass and Spring Creek. They have more relaxing activities after their runs including ultimate frisbee, yoga and swimming. 

There are also several roundtable discussions that the coaches lead covering things like mental toughness, goal setting, hydration and how to measure success. 

The athletes feed off the energy that the coaches bring to the camp, and find new ways to fall in love with running and themselves. 

Tumminello’s ultimate goal was to use the mountains as a way to change the kids’ hearts and souls, and teach them more than just how to run. 

“It really is the spirit of it, and running for the sake of running and how that translates and manifests into other ways of being in their life,” Strom said. Certainly from Ms. Renee’s guidance and this place, just sets a really amazing space for that to happen.”

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