Saturday, August 23, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Teacher rides, runs to keep up with 32 kindergartners

By
From page OSF3 | June 12, 2014 |

FAIRFIELD — Laurie Fenech of Vacaville takes her job as a kindergarten teacher at Laurel Creek Elementary School seriously.

That includes doing competitive trail running and mountain biking – and the requisite training – in her off time to help her keep up with her 32 5- and 6-year-olds.

“Being an aging athlete has helped my career in many ways,” said the 57-year-old Fenech. “The athletic endurance has helped my stamina in a kindergarten classroom. Racing bikes for a team as a teammate has helped me share the importance to my students the value of working together.

“Being fit has encouraged students to understand the importance and value of good nutrition, which provides vital fuel to help us maintain our learning power.”

Fenech has two sons – Kyle, 28, is an aerospace engineer, while Dominic, 26, is a software engineer – and has been a teacher for 17 years, all at Laurel Creek, the past five in kindergarten. She’s also taught third, second and first grade.

“I’ve just worked down,” she said with a laugh.

Fenech said she’s been an avid cyclist “about 30 years,” occasionally doing centuries, or 100-mile rides, with the Benicia Cycling Club. She began racing in 2004.

“I took the four-week clinic (for beginners to learn race skills) and then began to race,” Fenech said. “I continued to take skill clinics and raced most weekends in the women’s elite field, which I started as a (category) 4 racer and progressed to a Cat 1 racer in 2010.

“Fun and fitness helped me progress as a cyclist.”

And occasionally win. Since beginning a decade ago, Fenech has finished first in her division, usually ages 50-54 and later 55-59, 25 times, including the 2010 Carson Valley Classic Diamond Valley Road Race and 2009 Carson Valley Classic Minden Criterium.

She was also second in the 2011 Northern California/Nevada Time Trial Championship and fourth in the 2011 USA Cycling Masters Road Nationals individual time trial.

Yet Fenech found it increasingly difficult to put in the training necessary to remain competitive.

“Being 57, being in an elite field, it takes so much energy,” she said. “I don’t have that much energy to be (seriously competing).”

Fenech turned first to mountain biking around age 50 and then running three years ago as alternatives, though she still occasionally does a cycling race “to keep me in the loop.”

She trains five days a week, about a total of 12 hours. Fenech has a coach, John Hunt of San Anselmo-based Whole Athlete, with whom she works from October through February.

“He schedules my running and cycling using heart rate, power and cadence, and I send him workout results through my Garmin,” Fenech said. “It is very motivating having a coach. (It) is very fun to converse and share athletic abilities besides setting and achieving athletic goals.”

Fenech likes to trail race half marathons from September to March, usually working up to a half marathon once a month.

“Most races are single-track, mountainous trails with about 1,500 to 2,000 feet of climbing,” she said. “The trails are challenging with plenty of runners to make it competitive and make the racing fun. It is fun but serious. I am a competitive athlete. I set goals for every race.”

Fenech said she puts about five to six hours a week into running and likes to run in San Francisco, where she has a second home.

“The summer months when I am off from teaching, I take my mountain bike, my road bike and running shoes and travel to my favorite vacation spots around the Sierra range, Santa Cruz, Oregon and hope to visit the Utah National Parks this summer,” she said.

As for the rest of the year: “If I am hanging around the homes, I ride the Winters Loop or Berryessa Loop from Vacaville, or ride from my (San Francisco) home to Marin and ride the Mount (Tamalpais) Loop, Point Reyes Station or run through the many districts in the city.”

For Fenech, the time spent running and riding, as well as maintaining a healthy diet, have paid big dividends at school.

“Kindergarten is a feel-good classroom and going to work daily feeling healthy brings happiness to everyone involved,” she said. “I am lucky. I have a great career and I am healthy and fit.”

Reach Paul Farmer at 425-4646, ext. 264, or pfarmer@dailyrepublic.net. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pfarmerdr.

Paul Farmer

Paul Farmer is a 1985 graduate of Brigham Young University. The Suisun City resident has been with the Daily Republic Sports Department since 1989 and has served as sports editor since 2007. He and his wife Jackie have four children.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

2 shot Friday night in Fairfield

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A1, 15 Comments

 
Vallejo celebrates cultural diversity

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Groups receive honors for going green

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2

 
Badges pinned for new Fairfield, Vacaville firefighters

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
‘Nuttin But Fun!’ theme of 2015 Dixon May Fair

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

 
Adult literacy efforts in need of volunteers

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3, 1 Comment

County looks for Solano centenarians

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3

 
Brown signs two bills by Wolk

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

Brain tumors are not all alike

By Scott Anderson | From Page: B8

 
Weather for Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B10

 
Fairfield police log: Aug. 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

Suisun City police log: Aug. 21, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
.

US / World

New Obama birth control fixes for religious groups

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 12 Comments

 
US won’t let borders hamper fight vs. extremists

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Interpol seeks clues to Thai ‘baby factory’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Parents had hoped to negotiate with Foley captors

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

Couple charged in alleged odometer rollback scheme

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Passengers leave trove at San Francisco airport

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Lawn removal in parched California draws fine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 6 Comments

 
IDs of men found shot in adjacent yards released

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

DUI arrest is California Democrats’ latest blow

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Questions, answers about Missouri grand juries

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Gov’t warns US retailers about hacking software

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
New fear: What happens in Ferguson if no charges?

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

Ice bucket challenge may change nonprofit world

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Obama taking less vacation, but too much for some

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Days Obama, predecessors spent on vacation

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 9 Comments

 
Ebola spreads in Nigeria; Liberia has 1,000 deaths

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Mosque attack kills 64 in Iraq, Sunnis halt talks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Hamas kills 18 suspected informers to deter leaks

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

UN: death toll from Syrian civil war tops 191,000

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
West condemns Russia over convoy to Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

.

Opinion

 
Boxer, Feinstein: Different routs in backing Israel

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A8

 
Somebody deserves to be fired

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

.

Living

Community Calendar: Aug. 23, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: Aug. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2, 1 Comment

A ‘gifted’ family member doesn’t have a degree, can’t keep a job

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A7

 
Horoscopes: Aug. 23, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A7

.

Entertainment

Ebola outbreak revives interest in ‘The Hot Zone’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Parole denied yet again for Lennon’s killer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B9

 
.

Sports

Gray pitches into 9th, A’s top Angels

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Avila remains undefeated after opponent throws in towel

By Marcus Lomtong | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Offense struggles, Raiders fall to Packers 31-21

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Panik, Giants end Nationals’ 10-game win streak

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Ryu has 66, leads by 5 at Canadian Women’s Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Goodes leads Boeing Classic by 1 stroke

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Davis’ accomplishments still inspire despite loss

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Versatile Martin looks to earn 49ers roster spot

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
New, longer grass laid at 49ers’ Levi’s Stadium

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

US picks 12-man roster for basketball World Cup

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Blaney steals 1 from Kyle Busch on final restart

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Harvick wins Bristol pole; 5th of this season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Chevrolet wins IndyCar manufacturers championship

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Scott, Tringale tied for the lead at Barclays

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
This date in sports history for Aug. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
.

Business

Fitbit to Schumer: We don’t sell personal data

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Jell-O can’t stop slippery sales slide

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

At Jackson Hole, central bankers eye varying goals

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Yellen: Job market makes Fed hesitant on rate hike

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

Lawsuits challenge FAA drone, model aircraft rules

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Obituaries

Mary Louise Loveall

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Sandra “Sandy” Caldwell Garton

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Paul Nolin

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A6

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A7

 
.

Home Seller 08/23/14

Real estate transactions for Aug. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: HSR2

Average US 30-year mortgage rate at 4.10 percent

By The Associated Press | From Page: HSR3