TRU Tribe Blazing New Trails For Runners In The Valley

“I’ll never be a runner.”

A tribe of women are taking over the Valley one trail at a time. 50-year-old Lisa Pozzoni never thought she would be a runner, but for the last 12 years she’s been helping women blaze their own trail one step at a time. 

Pozzoni was a fitness instructor before becoming a full-time running coach and starting her own business. The key that turned Pozzoni into a runner was learning how to properly run. She learned proper running techniques while attending a fitness business summit when she was 38 years old, from that day forward she was inspired to share ChiRunning with other women. 

“The bottom line is learning how to get yourself in the right posture and to use gravity and your core muscles to do more of the work instead of using your legs,” Pozzoni said. “ChiRunning really teaches you how to get your body in the right place with your posture and not use your legs.”

The Running University

Pozzoni started The Running University located in Tempe, AZ to help teach other women how to enjoy running through effective techniques while building a community of fierce female runners. At The Running University (TRU) Pozzoni teaches women the basics of ChiRunning and safe running techniques to avoid potential injuries.

Pozzoni says it’s common for people to overuse their leg muscles when running as opposed to incorporating the whole body.

“When you take out the over-striding and not using your legs anymore, all of a sudden it’s just a way more efficient way to move and just easier,” Pozzoni said. “I love to coach groups of women together because I feel there’s a camaraderie.”

TRU Tribe

Most women who join The Running University are over 40-years-old and have little to no running experience. Pozzoni created TRU Tribes as a spinoff of The Running Univerity to foster a more community-oriented group of runners. 

“I tend to focus more on women because I feel like, at our age, we just need that connection,” Pozzoni said. “You make new friends and it keeps you doing that activity longer.”

Her goal is to encourage women to exceed their own expectations while making life-long friends.

“We’re not going to be injured because we’re using good technique,” Pozzoni says she hopes they’ll all be running together in their 80’s. “We’re going to stay together in our community and just keep doing crazy things.”

“My ultimate goal is to have TRU Tribes all around the country, maybe even all around the world,” Pozzoni said. “We can connect and travel all over the country in the world to do races or just find cool places to go run and hike together.”

Trail Running

“I tell if I meet anybody that has not even started running yet, just get on the trail,” Pozzoni said. “On the road there’s cars, it’s noisy, you know, you go out on the trail and I call it my church.”

Pozzoni encourages new runners to start trail running as opposed to running on pavement. She also helps train women who have experience running on the street to transition to trail running. 

One of the perks of learning to run on trails is that it helps people feel less tempted to run for the entire duration of the path. Rather, runners can find their own pace and enjoy the scenery around them. 

“My goal is to always just push people just a wee bit more out of their comfort zone,” Pozzoni said. “So regardless of whether they’re been on the road or haven’t, I’m like, let’s just go try a trail and we start hiking.”