Author: Teresa Roberts

2013 Results For Matthews Forest Trail Run

I would like to express my appreciation for all who made this first annual trail run possible. My reward for the event has been meeting so many great people and hearing their appreciation and support for the event. I accomplished exactly what I hoped for…a love for trail running and an appreciation for what we have in our back doors and surrounding us who are blessed enough to live in this area. Races are only as good as the volunteers! Obviously I had the best! Thank you. You know who all of you are. Know this was only possible because you were willing to give and serve…but didn’t we have fun! All of us want to thank Zach Olinger and Matthews State Forest and their staff for the help and encouragement we received on race day and the days leading up to the race. When I approached Zach about a trail run I received his hearty support from the start. As Zach said they are not funded for recreation, but he is an avid supporter. Without you initial enthusiasm I may not have continued my pursuit. We all want to thank the Baywood Rescue Squad for being at our run. Again, when asked for their help James Chrismon, their chief was there with his assistant. Remember to thank these volunteer rescue squad folk. They are possible because of people...

Read More


Masterpiece Fitness would like to acknowledge and express deep gratitude to the local mountain bikers who created the trails out at Matthews State Forest.  These folks worked tirelessly over a period of years to create the trails we are all enjoying.  After moving back here three years ago I was taken out to Matthews by some of these guys and proudly shown the fruit of their labor and encouraged to come enjoy, and that I did.  Most of these guys grew up here, as well as myself, and we all share a love for this area and all it has to offer.  One of the reasons I wanted to move back here is what I saw in these guys.  Some of these guys I went to school with.  We all share a love for the outdoors.  We developed this love from growing up outdoors here in Grayson and Carroll County One of the main reasons I wanted to return to this area to live were people like these guys.    I find them to be hardworking, kind, generous hearts, honest, and actually care about other people.  The trails were created out of a passion for mountain bike riding and a love for being outdoors.  Their passion was to share these trails with others who would have a true appreciation and for that I am eternally grateful.  Even though I...

Read More

Fitness: Playtime or Workout?

This article first appeared on the Galax Gazette Blog. I am a firm believer that fun and fitness should go together. If you ever attend any of my classes you will find people working hard and having fun at the same time. An advantage to personal training is being able to give people ways to enjoy their work out according to their own personal bent. I personally have to have the outdoors, so you will find me trail running anywhere I can find a local trail several times a week. I love kayaking on the New River here in Virginia. In the winter I go snow skiing. Summertime finds me on Topsail Island body surfing and running the beach bare-foot. Sometimes we need to simplify life and stop making exercise “work.” I think if we would work on changing our mindset and transform “work out” to “playtime” we wouldn’t have a society full of obese, sedentary people, including children. Children have forgotten how to go outside and play! We parents and adults need to lead by example. Before we can achieve any changes in life, we have to begin with our mind. I am a runner. Running is viewed by most of my friends and family as a grueling, boring feat. You may agree and be asking the usual question, “What do you get from it?” Glad you asked....

Read More

Fitness: So What Is Up With Trail Running?

Psalm 139:14 I have been a runner for the past thirty years, and there is nothing I enjoy more than a rumble in the woods. Trail running is a variant on running that differs markedly from road running and track running. Generally, trail running takes place on hiking trails, fire roads, old logging roads, and the like. Most commonly these are single track trails and are inaccessible by road, except at the trail heads, as we have here at Matthews State Forest. Trail running offers varying terrain; hills, deserts, forests, mountains, and narrow passages are common. Likewise, rough terrain and steep inclines may sometimes require hiking or scrambling to proceed. It is not unusual for runners to ascend and descend thousands of feet. A perfect example of these distinguishing characteristics was the Swannanoa Splashdown, a race to raise funds for the World Olympiad of Water. They offered a 15K or 6K. I opted for the 15K (9.3 mi). The race was almost all on trail and began and ended with a 2,200 foot elevation at Lake Laurel on the beautiful grounds of Blue Ridge Assembly in Black Mountain, North Carolina. The 15K course rises to an elevation of a 4,240 foot summit called High Windy, the highest point of the mighty Swannanoa Mountains. In case you didn’t catch the degree of the ascent, it was slightly over a two-thousand...

Read More