We are your running community
Our mission is to change lives and empower tribe members of all shapes, sizes and experience. Our goal is to provide you with the tools and resources needed to find your inner athlete, become mentally and physically strong, and achieve a healthier lifestyle. Never run alone again. No matter where you are on your journey.
Where we started
When we set out to make a documentary film about 12 people who’d lost an average of 100 pounds through running we had no idea what the future would bring. Now a hit film, From Fat to Finish Line is so much more. Our community is growing and every day members cross finish lines their former selves never could have imagined.
From Fat to Finish Line first started as the title of ...
... co-founder Jennifer Roe’s personal blog back in 2010. It chronicled her decision to train for a half marathon, which at the time sounded like a completely insane idea. She was still quite overweight and hated running. What she thought was going to be another failed attempt at something ‘stupid’ turned out to be the best decision she ever made. She trained, ran, and crossed her first finish line with her best friend and business partner, Angela Lee, by her side and hasn’t stopped running since.
Because of her blog, she was contacted by fellow blogger, Katie Foster of Runs For Cookies. Katie explained that she and her friend Rik Akey were forming a very special Ragnar Relay team. The team of runners would consist of 12 different people, all who had lost a significant amount of weight through healthy eating and running. The race was a relay race that spanned 200 miles, beginning in Miami, FL and ending in Key West. Jennifer was deeply moved to be invited and immediately jumped on the team.
Filmmakers by trade and fitness enthusiasts at heart, the thought of documenting the team’s journey was irresistible so Angela and Jennifer set out making the documentary From Fat to Finish Line.
The race and the months leading up to it were an amazing bonding experience. Friendships grew, the team members cheered each other on when good runs happened, cried on each other’s shoulders when disaster struck and supported one another through hours of training issues and questions. As friends and runners who had all been through the common experience of learning to navigate old bad eating habits and new fitness and health habits – they were able to relate to one another like no one else could.
As the filming process continued the little documentary picked up some press including the Today Show, Runner’s World Magazine, Health Magazine, All You, Women’s Day, Huffington Post and NPR radio just to name a few. Because of that exposure, our Facebook film page began to grow. Rik Akey, captain of the original From Fat To Finish Line Ragnar team, started a special Facebook Group for people to chat about their fitness goals. Not only were these new members interested in the film but we soon realized how many other people just like us were out there! People of all shapes, sizes, and abilities were getting out there, setting fitness goals, and working hard to cross finish lines.
We found that the same special bonding that the original team had through its members' common experiences could also happen with a bigger, wider community. The community continued to grow. More and more people joined, attempted new goals, and celebrated. Many pounds have been shed and many finish lines crossed in the group. It has been quite remarkable.
This is what we are about. Dream big, be the healthiest version of you possible, support one another and make goals. Whether you are losing 100 pounds, running a 200 mile race or getting up to walk around the block for the first time in years, you can do this. We got you. One foot in front of the other will bring you closer to your finish line. We’ll be here to pick you up if you need it while cheering the whole way.
Without the support, friendship, training, and resources that From Fat to Finish Line has provided me I would not only not be the runner I am today but I wouldn’t be the person. FFTFL is my tribe and thanks to being a part of this community I’ve crossed finish lines I never thought possible.
Nothing has meant more to me and my running journey than my FFTFL tribe. Without you all I would’ve never had the courage to even dream of completing a marathon. You encouraged me every step of the way and were there for me from training through to the finish line.
I joined the group a few years ago and, thanks to the encouragement and support I received from the group, I became a runner. I tried taking up running in the past and would run a few times then quit. This group helped me accomplish things I never thought I could.
Meet Our Team
The founding management team not only lives the FFTFL lifestyle, they hold decades of experience in their respective fields of coaching, marketing, technology, operations and event management.
We are a fitness community that provides an underserved, ...
... passionate and growing market of runners the resources they need to reach their health goals. We are not just owners of the community, we are the community. Understanding the struggles and unique challenges that our members face allows us to fill the gaps in the current industry. Our ability to relate to our members keeps us seeking superior ways of tackling the hurdles that often hold people back. Our company enables members to connect, get support, and remain motivated.
Angela Lee, Running and Triathlon Coaching
Angela is both a certified USAT triathlon coach and RRCA running coach. Her desire to get certified came from realizing there was a shortage of coaches focused on helping clients maintain balanced, healthy lifestyles rather than just winning races. She has completed 5 full marathons, 2 half iron distance triathlons, and countless shorter races.
Jennifer Roe, Life Coaching
Jennifer is a life coach helping others clear out the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual blocks that hold them back from living the life they want. Prior to finding running Jennifer struggled with a lifelong battle with obesity. She has since run three full marathons, including her hometown favorite, the NYC Marathon.
Karen Curtis, Technology Leadership
Karen leads the FFTFL technology team and manages the underlying technology infrastructure for delivering products and services to the community. When not working on FFTFL's technology platform, Karen can be found running insane distances over multiple days in exotic locations around the planet.
Nora Breuker, Community Impact Leadership
Nora leads the FFTFL community, its volunteer program and organizes the community events worldwide. Picking up running in 2013 changed Nora's life and helped her manage her struggle with weight. In addition to shorter races, Nora has run several half marathons.
Rik Akey, Head Coach
Rik is a running coach, writer, and motivational speaker. Prior to finding running, Rik was a 275-pound couch potato, he has been an avid runner since 2009. As a certified Distance Running Coach through Road Runners Club of America (RRCA), Rik has successfully coached many runners, helping them discover the joy of running.