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Director and Founder
Jonathan Lyau began running in 1979 at age 15. He has coached runners of different abilities. His runners range from pre-teens to 80+ years of age. He is currently an assistant girl’s cross country coach at Iolani School (14 yrs). He was the girl’s distance track coach at Kamehameha School for 10 years and the McKinley H.S. boy’s head XC coach for 1 year and also the head coach of Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s marathon training program, “Team N’ Training” (1996-2013). In 1996 he established Personal Best Training where he trains runners towards personal goals. Jonathan is one of Hawaii’s most accomplished road runners and a Hawaii State high school 3200m track champion (1982). He has completed over 40 marathons and has been the top Kamaaina (local-born) finisher in the Honolulu Marathon 17x from 1993 to 2004, 2006 to 2009, and 2012. He is the 1994 and 2002 Great Aloha Run champion. In 2009, he was inducted into the Honolulu Marathon Hall of Fame and in 2022 was inducted in the inaugural Hawaii Running Hall of Fame. In 2022, he became the first person from Hawaii to run a Sub 3 hour marathon in 5 different decades.
Matt Holton. Matt is a 4x Kama’aina Winner of the Honolulu Marathon, and his PR’s include: 2:23 marathon, 1:06:38 half, and 30:01 10K. His home is on the Big Island. A talented artist, Matt is an artist specializing in portraits using oil on canvas holtongallery.com. Matt makes videos on YouTube about his travels and water sports including windsurfing and big wave surfing. He has always been passionate about running. After spending a month in Iten, Kenya in 2019, his flame started to burn even brighter. It was here where he was able to observe first hand how world class runners lived/trained and was able to bring back a wealth of information. Matt raced at the 2019 Masters Track and Field National Championship, and became the national champion in the 10,000 meters for his age group. He does much of his training in Volcanoes National Park on the Big Island of Hawaii and is an avid YouTuber (Matt Holton).
Marissa (Missy) Kunsch.
Originally from Virginia Beach, VA, Missy moved to Oahu in 2012 to study environmental science and run cross country at HPU. She was a graduate assistant coach at HPU from 2016-2018 and became an assistant coach after graduating with an MA in sustainability in 2018. She currently work full time at Hawaii Energy and part time at HPU. One of the things She values most about running is the community it brings. In 2022 Missy won the King's Runner 10k.
Mei Mei Bayman.
Mei Mei is a student athlete at Occidental College where she runs cross country and track. She is majoring in economics and Chinese. She is a 2021 graduate of Iolani School.
Shane “Aka” Akamine - Respected XC and Track coach
Paul Oshiro - Kamehameha-Kapalama School assistant XC and Track coach
Workshop Speakers (2022):
Jacob Melnick (Dr. of Physical Therapy Director of Clinical Education @HPU)
Kelli Lyau (Iolani School Asst. Girls XC Coach)
Polina Carlson is Hawaii’s fastest female distance runner. Finding running later than most professional runners, Polina was a competitive tennis player at the University of West Alabama before her coach noticed that she outran everyone in running drills, including the members of the men's team. His encouragement to work out with the cross-country team to simply “stay in shape” for tennis led to her giving up tennis in order to focus solely on running. Since that time, Polina has seen success in her running career, taking victories at the 2014 Great Aloha Run, the 2013 XTERRA World Championship Half-Marathon and finishing 5th in the 2013 Honolulu Marathon. In December of 2014 Polina placed 6th at the California International Marathon with a time of 2:35:15, and has her sights now set on the Olympics.
Sponsored by Brooks Running, Polina currently resides and trains in Hawaii. Her rise has been meteoric and her potential is still untapped. She believes that with God by her side nothing is impossible.
2014, 2016, 2017
Tim Marr is a professional triathlete. He was born and raised in Hawaii. Tim is a 1997 graduate of Mililani High School where he was a standout athlete in cross country, track, and swimming. He currently lives and trains in Hawaii. Tim has won countless triathlons in Hawaii and also competes in triathlons around the world. He has placed as high as 15th in the Ironman World Championships held in Kona.
Gerry Lindgren is widely recognized as having been the best high school long distance runner in the United States. In 1964, in his senior year of high school, he ran 5000 meters (3.1 miles) in 13 minutes and 44 seconds, setting a U.S. high school record for the distance that would remain unbroken for 40 years. Among his other records he established that year was a time of 8:40.0 in an indoor 2-mile race, a mark that he would hold for 49 years until it was broken on February 16, 2013.
On July 25, 1964, after graduating from high school, Lindgren outran two Russian runners to win the 10,000 meter event a the dual US-USSR Track Meet. Later that summer in the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo, he finished ninth in the 10,000 meters behind gold medalist Billy Mills after having sprained an ankle during training. In 1965 Lindgren also competed against Mills in the 1965 National Championship meet, where they raced the 6-mile where both were timed in 27:11.6, a new World Record.
Lindgren attended Washington State University. While at Washington State, Lindgren won 11 NCAA Championships. He was one of only two people to ever defeat Steve Prefontaine in an NCAA Championship.
Gerry has lived in Hawaii since the 1980’s. He continues to run regularly and is active in the Hawaii running community.
Gerry has been inducted into the National Distance Running Hall of Fame and is truly one of America’s all-time legends of distance running.
High school personal records (1964)
1500 meters - 3:44.6
1-mile - 4:01.5
3000 meters - 8:06.3
2-mile (3.2 km) - 8:40
3 miles (4.8 km) - 13:17
5000 meters - 13:44
10000 meters - 29:17.6
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