‘Glutton for punishment’

Fairmont’s Dave Wogoman runs up Locust Avenue in preperation for Saturday’s Run to Read Races. Wogoman will run both the 15K and 5K races this weekend.

David Wogoman likes to run so much that after he completes the 15K portion of Saturday’s eighth annual Run to Read Races, he’ll get back in line and do the 5K as well.

“My wife said I’m a glutton for punishment,” said Wogoman, a Fairmont resident who works as a nursing assistant when he’s not running and training for races.

Wogoman runs 15 to 40 miles a week, depending on whether or not he’s planning a race that weekend, when he cuts back to preserve his resources.

This week would qualify. Last weekend, he participated in the Deckers Creek Half Marathon, from Masontown to Morgantown, and this weekend, he will be hitting two of the four races that will help raise money for Literacy Volunteers of Marion County.

Organizer Jim Woolfitt hopes the race, which begins with the 15k at 7:30 a.m. Saturday and also includes three more races at 9:15 a.m., including the 5k, will raise about $3,000 for Literacy Volunteers.

The other two races include a 5k race-walk and the Fun Run/Walk that is half of the 5k. All the races begin on Locust Avenue near the Marion County Adult Education Center, Woolfitt said.

Wogoman planned to do an easy run of the course this week but he has to take it easy. Last year, his running suffered from some injuries he had incurred, including to his ankle and knees, that cut down his number of races from 12 the year before to four last year.

“I guess as you get older, things happen,” he said.

He hopes to be back into the eight- to 10-race range this year. He ran the Literacy Volunteer’s January half marathon but had some problems from his previous year’s lack of training.

Wogoman ran in high school but got away from it in college, Eugene Bible College in Eugene, Ore. That did not prevent him from having a unique experience in college associated with running. He got to be an extra in the 1998 film “Without Limits,” which chronicled the life of Oregon runner Steve Prefontaine, a record-breaking long distance runner at the University of Oregon in the early 1970s who died in a 1975 car accident.

“Steve Prefontaine is a hero of mine,” Wogoman said.

A woman he knew got free tickets for him and his wife, Cheryl, that admitted them to Hayward Field at the University of Oregon, where they got to serve as extras, playing audience members in the stand watching a race.

Wogoman got to shake the hand of Donald Sutherland, who played Prefontaine’s coach Bill Bowerman, a legendary figure also known for his part in inventing Nike athletic shoes.

“I went down to get (Sutherland’s) autograph,” Wogoman said. “There were hordes of people there, and I got to shake his hand and say, ‘Hi, how are you doing?’ To me, it was an exciting thing.”

After college, Wogoman got back into running himself.

“It’s what I do best,” he said. “I try to stay active for health reasons.”

Race information, including the course, entry fees, and directions from a variety of locations, can be found on the Web sitewww.runningintheusa.com/run2read/.

A new aspect this year, Woolfitt said, will be bobblehead trophies that will be available to some of the winners.

“It’s just kind of new,” Woolfitt said. “We’re giving those to the overall winners and the age-group winners. Basically, you have to run fast to get a bobblehead.”

E-mail Mary Wade Burnside at mwburnside@timeswv.com.

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