Required -- but light -- Reading

What follows is a far-from-comprehensive list of resources that I find invaluable. They have inspired my running, as well as my coverage of endurance sports, and improved my writing.

Running resources

GO! St. Louis: The group's signature event, Family Fitness Weekend, attracts more than 25,000 participants, from six months to centenarians. But GO! is a year-round presence, offering corporate wellness and youth fitness programs.

St. Louis Track Club calendar: Looking for a race? The St. Louis Track Club keeps the most comprehensive list of area events.

Big River Running: In just six years, a single store has grown the three. Its running community has spread, and the group also offers race management services.

FleetFeet: Again, an ever-expanding empire has three stores and stages a multitude of races, including partnering with the Competitor Group on  Rock 'n' Roll St. Louis. 

USA Track and Field: Schedules, profiles and results for Olympic hopefuls, as well as national-level senior and junior runners.

Girls on the run:  If only this organization had been around when I was young, I never would have gotten so roly-poly and had such a fight with my weight and self-esteem. The group uses a 20-lesson curriculum of that integrates runnning training  with lessons in positive self-image for third- through eighth-graders. No better time to start feeeling good about yourself.

Invaluable resources 

St. Louis Sports Commission: No organization has helped enhance St. Louis' image as a sports mecca than the Sports Commission. The group has formed partnerships with other area organizations to bring the 2005 Final Four, the 2007 Frozen Four, the 2006 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, six NCAA Division I Wrestling championships and numerous Olympic Trials. Their partners include the Missouri Valley Conference, University of Missouri, the area's running stores, skating clubs. The Commission builds bridges in a community where the natural instinct is to burn them. Among their most ambitious projects is celebrating the city's Olympic Heritage. As the site of the 1904 Games, St. Louis is the first U.S. city to host the spectacular.

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