Frequently Asked Questions

Questions about USA Fit San Francisco:

Questions about the program:

Questions about signing up:

Questions about the training:

Other questions:

  1. It is past the registration date. Can I still join USA Fit San Francisco?
    Once we are past the registration date, we cannot take any new members.
  2. I’m not a member. Do you allow drop-ins?
    USA Fit San Francisco does not have a drop-in program, unless you are a visiting member of another USA FIT program. Our all inclusive membership covers our seminars, medical advice, coaching, and training runs.
  3. What is USA Fit San Francisco?
    USA Fit San Francisco is an award-winning running and walking program. This same program, currently being held in over 50 cities throughout the U.S. and internationally, is winning rave reviews and growing every year. USA Fit San Francisco has rescheduled their next program to February 25, 2017.
  4. Who should join?
    USA Fit San Francisco is perfect for anyone who has a desire to challenge themselves, wants to exercise and make new friends, wants to increase their body strength and stamina, wants to look and feel better, or simply wants to get involved in a healthy lifestyle sport. Whether you have only dreamed of completing a half marathon, marathon or have done several, this program can accommodate you.
  5. When are the USA Fit San Francisco programs?
    The next official USA Fit San Francisco program has been rescheduled for February 25, 2017.
  6. Where is the training?
    We meet at different locations throughout the program.  Our first meeting will be at be at On the Run shoes.  Address to be announced.
  7. Are you affiliated with a charity?
    USA Fit San Francisco is not associated with a charity, and you do not need to raise money to participate in this program. There are several good marathon training programs where raising money for a charity is part of the program. While these can be effective and rewarding, we realize that it’s not for everyone and may be impossible to do year after year. Some of our members choose to raise money for a charity, but it certainly isn’t a requirement.
  8. How did all this come about?
    It all began in Houston about 24 years ago with about 50 runners, two guys, and an idea that runners needed some guidance and training to achieve their marathon goals.
  9. What is an ability-based color group?
    USA Fit San Francisco consists of four pace groups: Blue, Green, Yellow, Red and Purple.   You will be placed in the group that best suits your training pace. For example, if you train at a 9-10 minute per mile pace, you will be a member of the Yellow group. This system works because it allows you to train with those who are at your ability level.
  10. What color group will I be in?
    Our first two weekend runs are one- or three-mile pace finder walks or runs. Your time for pace run will place you in a color group. You should run at a pace at which you feel you could keep going for a little bit beyond those one or three miles. If you couldn’t keep walking or running after completing our initial pace finder, then you are going too fast.  All walkers will be in the Purple group.
  11. Why should I run my one or two mile time trial slower when I can go faster?
    Simply because you are training for a marathon, not a one- or three-mile race. Running too fast will seriously compromise your training season. If you find your correct training pace from the beginning, you will complete the marathon in less time, you will experience fewer injuries, and you will have a lot more fun.
  12. What are the weekly seminars?
    Each weekend, after the group run, we’ll hold a 15-20 minute educational seminar. Topics will all be health- and fitness-related and will be led by industry professionals. After each seminar, you will break off into your color groups for a brief talk and question-and-answer with your coach.
  13. What happens on any given Saturday?
    We run/ walk with our groups before each seminar. The seminar will start at a pre-determined time every Saturday. After the seminar, we usually meet with our color groups for a few minutes to talk with the coaches, ask questions, make plans for the next week, etc. Before the weekend, you will be given the starting time for your color group (available on the website and in the e-newsletter you’ll be receiving).
  14. Who created our schedule?
    Our schedule comes from the great folks at Houston FIT. For over 24 years, they have been training people all over the country just like us. Everybody has a different marathon philosophy, but ours has been tested literally tens of thousands of times.
  15. Do we get discounts on shoes?
    Shoes N Feet is offering 15% off any in store products including shoes.
  16. How can I sign up?
     Sign ups for the next program will begin on December 19, 2016.   You can sign up online by clicking on the red “Register Now” button at the top of the page, or in person at one of our sign up sessions.
  17. How much does it cost?
    USA Fit San Francisco’s 20-24 week training program costs only $115 for new members and $90 for returning USA FIT members.
  18. What is included for the sign-up fee?
    • Ability-based group work-outs and coaching
    • Training log
    • Weekly seminars
    • Weekly training schedules
    • USA Fit San Francisco T-shirt
    • Discounts at sports apparel stores
    • Social activities, FUN and more!
  19. When is the in-person sign-up session?
    In-person registration for USA Fit San Francisco’s next program will take place at On The Run shoes in San Francisco on February 25, 2017 at 8am.
  20. What happens at the sign-up session? The sign-up session includes sign-ups, meet the coaches and a short time trial run or walk which helps place you in the correct ability-based group. Everyone is strongly encouraged to come. The sign-up session takes approximately 1- 1.5 hours.
  21. Can I pay with a credit card?
    Yes. Register online by clicking on the red “Register Now” button at the top of the page to pay with a credit card. We cannot accept credit cards at our in-person sign-ups, so please sign up online with your credit card online or bring cash or check to the in person sign-ups.
  22. Do I have to attend both orientation sessions?
    If possible, we’d like you to attend both sessions (weeks 1 and 2). We will cover all the details of how the program works the first week and put you into your groups. The content of the first two seminars is also different. The first week is information about USA Fit San Francisco and a free gait analysis from our sponsor; the second seminar is a mandatory session on “Hydration and Warm Weather Running.”
  23. I can’t make it to the first weekend. Should I still sign up?
    Yes, you should still sign up! We’d like you to attend the first week for the reasons outlined in the previous Q&A, but we know not everyone can make it to week 1. That’s why we have another sign-up the following week. The week 2 seminar will be a quick overview of week 1, but we also have Coaches/Assistant Coaches ready to answer any question you have from the previous week.
  24. Does entry into USA Fit San Francisco include entry into the marathon?
    No, your payment to USA Fit San Francisco only covers the cost of your participation in the training program. We are not affiliated with the races in any way, we just train for it! We will provide information about how to sign up for the goal races.
  25. How much training does this program involve?
    Realizing that most people lead very busy lives, this program is one that can easily fit into your schedule. For the most part, the program calls for running only four days a week. Your long run or walk will usually take place on Saturday with your group. The day after your long run is always a rest day. During the week, you run or walk for time only (i.e., 30 minutes), not for distance.
  26. What does 20 on the weekly schedule (during the week) mean? Are we running 20 miles?
    During the week, we run for minutes. So if the schedule says “30” on a Tuesday, you should run or walk 30 minutes. Do this at a comfortable pace unless instructed to do otherwise. On the weekends, we do miles, so the schedule will say four miles. Listen to your coaches for guidance on running these miles each week.
  27. Do I have to be there every week?
    While those long runs and walks are a lot easier when you’re doing them with the group, we know there are times when you won’t be able to make a weekend meeting. The seminars are important, so be sure to speak with your coach or running buddies about what you missed. In our experience, the success of our members is directly proportional to their ability to attend our weekend trainings. If you do have to miss a week, check this website for the next week’s schedule.
  28. Can we participate in races during training?
    Sure! In fact, the entire group will be participating in races this season. You certainly don’t have to be competitive about it, but it’s fun to run or walk in a different place, get a race number, and cross the finish line.
  29. What if I travel during my training? Can I attend USA FIT programs in other cities?
    Absolutely. USA FIT has programs in over 50 cities around the world, and you are welcome to attend any USA FIT meeting anywhere.
  30. Could I win the Marathon?
    Of course you could. However, most likely you’ll get a nice T-shirt, a finisher’s medal, bragging rites, and a lot of cheers from spectators and coaches.
  31. What if I want to find out more?
    Send us an e-mail at Thanks!