The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

The online student news source of Lovejoy High School

The Red Ledger

Ruhala and team win White Rock Marathon

Kenyan marathon runner Jon Itati can run 26.2 miles in 2 hours 17 minutes and 21 seconds, which puts him at almost a 5 minute a mile pace. Unachievable for most runners, last year Dallas White Rock Marathon organizers devised a plan to show just how fast these runners are: take 16 of the best high school runners in Dallas-Ft. Worth and have them challenge the Kenyans relay style.

Among those chosen, junior Katie Ruhala.

“Well there were about 15 to 20 high school students running against the Kenyans who ran the whole race. It really just puts the efforts of professional athletes into perspective,” Ruhala said.

10 boys would run 2 mile segments and 6 girls would run 1 mile segments, giving them fresh legs against the Kenyans when it came their turn. This year, Ruhala was asked to run mile 17 for the team.

“I ran the High School Relay last year, so I was pretty excited when they asked me to do it again,” Ruhala said. “It really is an honor to race the world class Kenyan athletes.”

Even though, it was cold and raining throughout the marathon, Ruhala did not let the weather dampen her enthusiasm.

“It was an amazing experience altogether,” Ruhala said. “Before I got the handoff, I was standing around with Coach C and his dogs, braving the elements of cold and rain, but when I saw the neon yellow shirt of our relay team coming my way, I just braced myself for a lil’ run with the Kenyans.”

While most people train months for a marathon, there was no preparation time for Ruhala.

“I didn’t do any specific training,” Ruhala said. “I had actually just gotten off my mandatory 2 week break, but it was just a chance to go out and have fun racing and pull out everything I had at that moment.”

However, that did not stop her from actually passing the Kenyans at one point during her run.

“We were a bit behind at the beginning, but I got a little excited so I sprinted off in front of them. I mean how often do you get the opportunity to lead the White Rock Marathon?” Ruhala said. “But they picked up their pace pretty quick, so I just hung with them for the rest of the mile. Honestly it just felt amazing to be running stride for stride with them.”

This year, the high school relay team was able to win the entire race, whereas they were unable to keep pace last year.

While Ruhala has participated in one way or another for the past few marathons, she has yet to complete a full marathon.

“I definitely see myself running marathons in the future, but it’ll probably be a while after my competitive racing, unless I find that marathons are my forte,” Ruhala said. “I’ve always pictured myself, when I get old, as an old shriveled up woman cranking out marathons though.”

View Comments (1)
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Samantha Wendt, Managing Editor
Initially, the legendary snack cabinet and promise of courtside Mavericks tickets lured Senior Samantha Wendt to the newspaper class. Wendt enjoys experimenting with dessert recipes, and sometimes spends upwards of 6 hours making a decadent dessert. Even more than food, Wendt worships the Dallas Mavericks. She idolizes NBA Finals MVP Dirk Nowitzki, and knows every single statistic and happening within the Mavericks organization. In the 1st grade Wendt alternated between studying the biographies of the first 42 US Presidents and learning Russian. In 4th grade, she progressed to mapping out the rest of her life; she decided to travel to every single country in the world for a year after college, become a spy for the President, take a bullet in the leg for the President which would led to her subsequent two-term election, and become a college professor until she dies. Now, Wendt has made her life plan more achievable, and aspires to join the FBI.

Comments (1)

The Red Ledger values the opinion of its readers and encourages them to discuss its content. All comments are subject to approval by The Red Ledger staff. The Red Ledger does not allow anonymous comments and requires a valid email address. The email address will not be displayed but will be used to confirm your comments. Comments are reviewed as often as possible. Comments with inappropriate content will not be published. Once submitted, comments become the property of The Red Ledger. To see our full Comment Policy, visit
All The Red Ledger Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • AnonymousDec 5, 2012 at 4:14 pm

    Katie is an amazing runner! Our school is lucky to have her 🙂