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The Student News Site of San Francisco State University

Golden Gate Xpress

The Student News Site of San Francisco State University

Golden Gate Xpress

A new student-run club brings community and a safe space for women

Girl Run Club aims to create a space that supports new friendships and health
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Neal Wong
Jessica Phung, Tobias Roat and Kelly Bailon walk up steps during their Lands End hike on Nov. 18, 2023. (Neal Wong/Golden Gate Xpress)

Rain or shine, San Francisco State University’s new Girl Run Club meets every weekend, inviting others to come with them on hikes and runs while exploring new cafes across the city.

Girl Run Club members hike up Sutro Heights Park on Nov. 18, 2023. (Neal Wong /Golden Gate Xpress)

Kelly Bailon, a third-year student, started the club as a way to bring people together and make new friends. It started with an Instagram page, which began to gain traction over time.

“The first meeting was just me and Carlos. No one really showed up,” Bailon said. “Now, the group has over 80+ members on Heylo.”

Carlos Posadas has been in the club ever since it started. Both Posadas and Bailon were already going on runs together when Bailon decided she wanted to start the club.

“I believe it’s important for anyone who identifies as a woman or femme presenting to have a space like Girl Run Club since it brings girls of all different backgrounds, ages and special interests to be together and sweat collectively without the pressure of having to do too much,” Posadas said.

Not only does the club go out to exercise, but they always begin their meetings at different coffee shops. They often play music as they venture out into different parts of the city, according to Posadas. The club took a trip to Mt. Davidson and described the trip as the highlight of their experience in the club so far.

“It felt like a great break with those girls, Rihanna powering us up that incline, and getting a wonderful view of the city,” Posadas said.

The Girl Run Club encourages people to run at their own pace. They met this past Saturday at Andytown Cafe, walking up toward Land’s End.

Members of the Girl Run Club pose for a photo during their Lands End hike on Nov. 18, 2023. Front: Kelly Bailon, Tobias Roat. Back: Aloe Alvarez, Jessica Phung, Nora Murillo. (Neal Wong/Golden Gate Xpress)

Aloe Alvarez is one of many new members of the group.

“I’ve been wanting to start running again,” Alvarez said. “The first obstacle is being scared, but once you come meet new people, it’s super cool.”

This was her first time meeting with the group, but they all clicked instantly.

“You’re gonna have a lot of instances where you’re uncomfortable,” said Bailon on starting. “But I think my moral is always be uncomfortable because if you’re stuck in your comfort, you’re not really growing. All the girls are super nice and outgoing.”
For individuals seeking to forge new friendships and enhance their mental well-being and confidence, the Girl Run Club could prove to be a suitable choice. Prospective members are encouraged to join the club’s Heylo group, with new participants warmly welcomed at any point.

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About the Contributors
Michelle Ruano Arreola, Staff Reporter
Michelle Ruano (she/her) is a reporter for Golden Gate Xpress. Though she is from Hayward, CA, she currently resides in San Francisco. She is a journalism major focusing on online print and a minor in Special Education. She has previously interned for YR Media in Oakland, CA. Outside school, she loves playing video games with her friends and attending live music shows.
Neal Wong, Co-Copy Editor
Neal Wong (he/him) is a third-year journalism student and minoring in urban studies and planning. He was born and raised in San Francisco and attended Washington High School. He has photographed and written for Golden Gate Xpress first as a contributor, then as a photographer, and now as a copy editor. His photos have also been published by the San Francisco Bay ViewSan Francisco Public Press, Mission Local, and Xpress Magazine. Neal has also created and taught four SFSU Experimental College courses. His hobbies include traveling, cooking, and reading.

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