Running Club an outlet for exercise and rejuvenation, allows employees to go the extra mile

“We know that because of their participation in running club, employees are less stressed and taking better care of themselves,” said Seth Watson, Human Resources Service Delivery Manager. “They’re also more productive and so employee engagement goes up.”

“If we have engaged people, then we are going to do our jobs better.”

The running club is divided into two groups. The Chinook Building group runs every Monday and Wednesday, leaving the bike storage room at 12:10 p.m., and the King Street Center group which runs every Wednesday, leaving from the Activity Center at 12:10 p.m. as well.

Seth Running Group Lead

Seth Watson is the lead organizer for the King County employees downtown running club.

A longtime runner, and one of the main running club members, Seth has been with King County since 2011. He initially joined the club just for fun, but now he coordinates the running schedule and sends out the email reminders. He appreciates this consistent outlet for exercise and values the opportunity to get out midday and see the city firsthand.

“When I exercise at noon the rest of the afternoon is better,” he said. “I’m more efficient at my work, and it’s beneficial in terms of helping me focus my energy and concentration on what I’m doing.”

“Plus, the view never gets old. There’s not a lot of places you can run that have such a spectacular view.”

Seth is of course referring to the beauty of the city and the landscape around Seattle. With the Olympics to the west and Mt. Rainier to the south, the Running Club has a front row seat to the best sights the Northwest has to offer. The Club has a northbound route, passing the Ferris wheel to the Olympic Sculpture Park and a southbound route to the stadiums, King County Metro barns and the SoDo district, as well as an eastbound route towards Lake Washington. Taking off at 12:10 p.m., or roughly a quarter after the hour, allows the Club 35 to 40 minutes of pure, uninterrupted running.

Oftentimes, Seth and others will see familiar faces on their run, as other companies have similar employee exercise options.

“There’s lots of employers who allow their employees to do this,” said Seth. “Some of the big Belltown companies have these running clubs and so we recognize people because we’ll see them in the same gear at the same spot.”

“It’s fun to do and allows people to run at a pace that’s comfortable and meaningful to them.”

Feeling refreshed, enjoying the views and meeting new people, from within King County and outside, are just a few benefits of participating in the Running Club. With opportunities like the Ragnar Relay for employees to become involved in, the Club is both a community of peers and a chance for personal growth.

If you are interested in joining the King County Running Club, contact Seth Watson at Seth.Watson@KingCounty.gov. For more information about the Downtown Running Clubs and other healthy exercise options available to King County employees, visit the Healthy Incentives Healthy at Work webpage.