Marathon

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WE DID IT!!! All 52 of our runners crossed the finish line of the ASICS LA Marathon on Sunday! 6 months of hard work and dedication has paid off - THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

The 2014 Run to Save a Soul Team is grateful to our sponsors!


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We are still shy of our goal, if you would like to make a donation please click here:



Marathon Running—the Perfect Pastime for the Recovering Alcoholic.


About Team Beit T'Shuvah

Starting in 2010, Beit T'Shuvah has campaigned a team of runners in the ASICS LA Marathon. Consisting of staff, alumni, residents and community supporters, Team Beit T'Shuvah embarks on this monumental athletic effort to help raise awareness and funds for the large percentage of Beit T'Shuvah residents who can't afford treatment. Our Run to Save a Soul campaign helps aid Beit T'Shuvah's mission of never turning anyone away due to their inability to pay. It demonstrates how our program helps recovering addicts survive their addiction and thrive in every aspect of their lives. The team is a community of individuals in and supporters of recovery - and was formed on the basis so that others may have the chance to recover. The team started off 5 years ago with 12 people and has since grown in strength and numbers. The 2013 Marathon Team had 54 runners cross the finish line. We are constantly growing and spreading our message of hope and recovery along the way. Join us in our effort to save souls!



Run to Save a Soul

Running the marathon is crazy! Running a half-marathon is half-crazy. It's a trip on the healthy wild side, an aerobically stimulated endorphin party, a lovely mixture of euphoria and masochism. Team up with a friend so you can both run 13.1 miles in a relay team race. Or, if you're fully unhinged, run the full 26.2! The ASICS LA Marathon-it's crazy, it's fun, it's unforgettable!

What we provide - value:

  • Registration into the ASICS LA Marathon - $175
  • Experienced Certified Coaches - Priceless
  • 26 Week Training Program - $1,500
  • Mentorship Program - Priceless
  • Hotel Accommodations Marathon Night - $180
  • Transportation on Race Day - $20
  • Pre-race Dinner - $30
  • Team T-Shirt(s) - $60
  • Fundraising Support - Priceless


What you need to do:

  • Sign-up
  • Raise $1,000 to Save a Soul!
  • Lace up on Race Day: Sunday, March 9th 2014 for the ASICS LA Marathon!


That's it!!! Training season starts soon! To find out how to join or for more information, contact Stephanie Cullen at 310-204-5200 ext. 212 or scullen@beittshuvah.org

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Meet Our Coaches

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Christopher King

Beit T'Shuvah's Marathon Team knows Christopher King as "Coach Chris," the motivational 30 year old who is obsessed with running and the life changing feelings it produces. Chris recently became a Certified Marathon Coach with the Road Runners Association of America. Astonishingly, he has already completed 14 Marathons across the country, from Los Angeles to Miami. His relationship with Beit T'Shuvah began when Rabbi Mark spoke at his Rotary Club and disclosed his moving tale as "The Holy Thief." Rabbi's story struck a chord with Coach Chris and he decided to accept his open invitation to Shabbat Services. After that, he was hooked. "I fell in love with Beit T'Shuvah and with Judaism," says Chris. Now, several years later, he is a month away from completing his conversion to Judaism.

The same fascination and love Coach Chris feels for our community, he also feels towards running. Nothing gives him more joy than providing residents with a healthy outlet for their demons, and the ability to prove to themselves that they are capable of anything they set out to accomplish. Chris is still continually amazed by the transformation his runners go through after a Marathon. "Watching their smiles and listening to their exuberance after their achievements," says Chris, "it warms my heart in ways I can't fully describe."

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Michael Cohen

Michael J. Cohen, affectionately known as "MJ" to the Marathon Team, has been passionately coaching and running the ASICS LA Marathon for 5 years. In May, he was certified as an Adult Distance Running Coach with the Runners Club of America (RRCA). After the Beit T'Shuvah took him in straight from Prison, MJ started devoting his time to helping others surpass their expectations while giving back to the place that gave him a life. As a BTS alumnus, MJ understands the struggles residents grapple with and the unbelievable sense of accomplishment that comes from crossing the finish line. This 52 year old never stops reaching for the impossible, and constantly inspires others to surpass their wildest dreams. His extreme dedication has propelled him to complete 5 marathons, 2 dozen ½-marathons, and countless 5/10K's.

For Coach MJ, the best part of coaching is witnessing firsthand the beaming joy and indescribable pride the runners' experience. Of his overwhelming transformation, MJ says, "The best part of being their coach is seeing our runners'faces, some crying and some smiling. That sense of accomplishment makes being their coach even more exciting and worthwhile!" Seeing the ecstatic looks on his runners' faces as they receive a Finisher's Medal makes him realize the profound meaning of his hard work. As MJ knows, miracles occur when one strives to be greater.

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David A. Wiss, MS, RDN, CPT

David Wiss graduated from USC with a Bachelor's in Social Science. He earned his Master's in Nutrition and Dietetics from CSUN, where he completed training to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN). His passion for fitness led him to become a Certified Personal Trainer through NASM. David's journey into health and fitness began in 2006 when he overcame his own health issues. A year later he walked 60 miles in a 24-hour period, experiencing an inner transformation that has led him to walk rather than run marathons. David is known for his "meditation walks" and has led several 14-mile night walks for Beit T'Shuvah residents over the past five years. Rather than running, Mr. Wiss walks the course in 7.5 hours.

During his Dietetic Internship, David developed a nutrition education class at Beit T'Shuvah called "Nutrition in Recovery". He taught residents the basics of nutrition and encouraged behavior change with respect to exercise and food. David also met with residents individually to assist them in meeting their goals and developing a healthy relationship with food. David is the Beit T'Shuvah Marathon "Team Dietitian" offering support and guidance to runners and walkers. His favorite part about coaching the marathon is connecting with members of the BTS community. Walking for several hours creates bonds that enhance relationships. For David, the marathon is not a "race" but rather a demonstration of gratitude to Beit T'Shuvah.

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Craig Miller

Craig Miller has been a part of the ASICS LA Marathon from every possible angle. His first encounter with the Run to Save a Soul Team was as a bystander. Back in 2010, Craig had just arrived at Beit T'Shuvah as a resident and he was brought out to witness and cheer on the other marathon runners. A former USC Scholarship Swimmer and sponsored triathlete, Craig has the heart and soul of a true athlete and not being able to participate in that first marathon had a deep impact on him. "To not be able to compete in the marathon because of my alcoholism, was for me, the absolute bottom" says Craig. The next year, he was out on the course as a runner and the year after that, as a runner and coach. Craig recently became a Certified Marathon Coach with the Road Runners Association of America and is excited to be back for his 3rd year of coaching.

You can usually find Craig leading the pack as he uses his athletic prowess to help pull other runners into running discomfort while easing them into the comfort of recovery. Craig loves watching the runners that he trains reach their goals and become transformed human beings. His passion for the marathon also comes from knowing that he is raising money to help save lives through Beit T'Shuvah. As his famous, long-time motto goes-"I run so you can recover."

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Leslie Gold

An avid cyclist and runner, Leslie Gold, joined the Beit T'Shuvah Marathon Team in 2012. She wanted her first marathon to be meaningful and was inspired to join the team's "Run to Save a Soul" message. Leslie felt a warm welcome during her first encounter with our community. She was impressed by the dedication and openness of the runners, and enjoyed the bonds she formed while running with the team. "I felt honored to be a part of their journey, by being at their side and encouraging them not to quit when the going got tough," says Leslie. Leslie revels in the emotional charge of completing a marathon because as she says, "Finishing a marathon is a metaphor for life."

While Leslie first started running and cycling 3 decades ago for its physical benefits, Leslie soon fell in love with the opportunity to clear her head, reduce stress, and enjoy the beauty of nature. Leslie cherishes the fact that the runners share their stories and concerns, and that they are able to, "push each other to do better than any of us could do on our own."

Having completed the 2013 ASICS LA Marathon, Leslie looks forward to her first year as a coach. Her goal is to inspire others to make fitness a part of their daily lives, so they too can enjoy the various mental and physical benefits it brings.

Don't want to run? Here's other ways to help:



The 2014 Run to Save a Soul Team is grateful to our sponsors!





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Check out our Team Page, donate, and learn more about each team member at:
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