The Next Step ®

Youth Programs

Training Program Info

Hover over a training program to see a synopsis.

Click one for all the details!

Get ready for a girl’s night out of fun and fitness! The Next Step FIT Program is an all-female, adult running program designed to help you achieve your running goals. Whether you have never run before or you want to set a new personal record for the 5k distance, this program is for you. We have groups for all speeds from walkers to fast runners.

Starting Thursday, May 8th, the Next Step FIT coaches will provide a structured program to guide you through the basics of running technique as well as building your stamina to complete our goal race, the Women’s Distance Festival 5k in July. Please click on the link for Females in Training for more information.

Whether you are a seasoned runner or just getting started, it can be tough to get motivated for Winter workouts. This training program, however, will help you make it out that door. Running with good friends and excellent coaches make that first step out into the cold February mornings well worth the effort.

Imagine that this year, when you are going out for a run on that first sunny spring day something will be different. This year you will already be in shape! The Hibernation to 5 K program will prepare you, through a series of track workouts, for an early spring 5 k race. The program is also an excellent preparation for the Next Step 10M/10k program that begins in April.

Zero to Weekly is a co-ed training program designed for the person who would love to run, but tires at the thought of even running to the mailbox. This 9-week program assumes you have never run before, and builds your endurance to a 5K (3.1 mile) distance using intervals of running and walking. Meet with your coaches and other participants once a week for motivation and inspiration. At the end of the program, participants may optionally run a complimentary Striders Weekly 2-mile or 5K race.

Building to Bagel is for the occasional 5K runner who wants to run longer distances. You should be able run at least one mile without stopping to walk. The 9-week program will help you build to a six-mile distance, so you can participate in the weekly Bagel Run from Wilde Lake. Meet with your coaches and pace groups once a week for motivation and inspiration. At the end of the program, participants are encouraged to join their coaches at the Bagel Run and gather for a free bagel and drink afterwards!

The rumors are true! Next Step 10K/10Mile has sold out for 2014. We hope that you look at upcoming Next Step programs offered throughout the year if you did not get into this one. Remember, you need to be a current HCS member to participate in most Next Step programs. Good luck on the roads and trails this year.
Next Step 10 Coordinators-
Coach Dwight (Coach Death), Coach Chris (Coach Cruella), Coach Paula (Coach Nice) and Coach Debbie (Coach BQ)

Are you ready to take that Next Step and become a half marathoner or maybe even a full marathoner?? Or maybe you want to improve or hit that new PR in one of these distances! If so, the Next Step Half Marathon/Marathon program is for you! The Next Step Half Marathon/ Marathon program is a 14-week structured program aimed at getting the results you need to achieve your goal. Participants typically target a full or half marathon in the fall. Our group of experienced, enthusiastic coaches will guide you and encourage you along the way.

Registration will open soon; do not delay as this very popular program is sure to fill up quickly! Be sure to click on the program link for more information!

In the spring, from around late March through late May, the Junior Striders put on a track program consisting of multiple practices a week and the opportunity to compete in meets against other junior runners on weekends.

Sprinting, Distance, and Field events are covered.

The annual G.I.R.L. Program is organized entirely by volunteers of the Howard County Striders who want to share their love of running and fitness with you.

Their goal is to inspire women to enjoy a lifelong program of fitness.

A program is for the more serious and competitive runners, 9 to 18 years old.

We will compete at the AAU Club Championships in Disney the week of July 8-14.

In the fall, from around Labor Day through late November, the Junior Striders cross-country team holds their season. The program is for runners ages 6 to 14.

The runners will have an opportunity to participate in twice a week practice sessions, as well as compete against other junior runners at weekend meets.

This program is for runners in 2nd Grade through 12th Grade. This track clinic is for the more serious & experienced sprinters looking to stay in sharp during the fall or looking to get ready for the winter track season

Running from June through August, a resource designed for high school and college runners pursuing excellence in cross country.

The program simply encourages runners to run over the summer and build a solid base so they will be prepared for what their coaches have planned for them when the season begins in mid-August.

The Weekly Series races are conducted at various locations, mostly elementary and middle schools, around Howard County.

Separate races ranging in distance from 2 miles to 15 kilometers are scheduled for most weeks throughout the year and the series culminates in the distribution of series awards

A monthly workout forum, Coach strives to provide accessible workouts for a range of runners, who differ in age, ability, competitive desire, racing goals, racing distances, and mileage levels.

The Feet First/Striders racing team is a joint venture between Feet First Sports and the Howard County Striders.

Founded in the summer of 2006, the purpose of the racing team is to provide an avenue to assemble and recognize highly talented and competitive members of the Howard County Striders.

Every Saturday morning at 7:00am, a group of Howard County Striders and friends get together in the parking lot in front of the indoor Swim Center in Wilde Lake for informal distance runs.

Runners of all skills and abilities come out,and group themselves based on pace, and then go out for runs ranging from 7-20 miles.

All levels of runners are invited to join: fast, moderately fast, pacers, walkers and run walkers.

We will start with 2 mile runs and progress to 3.6 miles

Come out and meet new friends and see your current running buddies!

Unstructured runs & bagels sound more your style?
Check out some running groups as well!
Not sure what program is right for you? Have some questions?
Contact the Special Programs lead, Jessica Stern: