Palmer Excels at Jog Your Memory Run  - Kingswood Oxford

Athletics News

September 27, 2023

Palmer Excels at Jog Your Memory Run 

On a humid September morning in Needham, MA, the Kingswood Oxford School girls’ and boys’ cross country teams took part in the annual Jog Your Memory run, which supports the search for a cure for Alzheimer’s while also supporting the caregivers suffering from the emotional and financial devastation brought on by the disease. The team opens its season by running in a 5K run, so decided it would be fun to change it up while supporting a cause in lieu of a typical preseason race. 


One runner in particular, Claire Palmer ’25, had an exceptionally strong showing at the race. Palmer placed first overall for the girls’ team with a personal record time of 19 minutes and 5 seconds, about a 6:05 pace. Palmer has always been a strong runner, but since last summer, she has prioritized her training, mindset, and overall health. It has paid off in spades. She equates her exceptional first-place finish as a mark of her increased endurance over the last 12 months. 


“Claire operates with a high degree of humility, “ said Cross Country Varsity Coach Fritz Goodman. “She has emerged as an elite runner in our high school division, consistently finishing in the top three places on the boys’ team.” In addition to her sports accolades, Palmer is a focused, energetic, and diligent student. Goodman also describes her as a warm and compassionate person. “Not only does this make her an ideal teammate, it helps to explain the degree of effort she displayed in a fundraiser for Alzheimer’s research,” he said. “Claire understood the gravity of the road race and pushed herself to attain maximum performance. That was one of the reasons she was the top female performer and one of the top ten finishers in the race.”



Over a given week, Palmer’s training typically includes a long run day of around 8-10 miles, a speed day with either hill or mile repeats, and a tempo day, rounded out with a few easier pace runs. During a race, her strategy is to not look at her watch for as long as possible. Once it is a few miles in, she calculates how much distance she has remaining, then pushes through to the end. During the Jog Your Memory run, Palmer had a feeling her pace was a particularly fast one. “It’s a feeling you get, a certain exhaustion, and you know you are doing well if you feel like that.”

The run was an uplifting way to kick off the 2023 season. The cross-country program is looking strong this year and poised for a great season.  “It was a great event overall for KO to support longtime KO faculty and their fundraiser,” said Goodman.


The race hits very close to home for the KO community. Its inception several years ago was in memory of long-time beloved former faculty member Dick Caley, who passed away unexpectedly. Caley is why this fund was started, and it has supported over 100 needy families since it began. As the ultimate Alzheimer’s caregiver, Caley saw his beloved wife Carol, who suffered from the illness, every day for over seven years as she resided in her new home, a residential care center. His dedication to her and the cause inspires and persists in supporting families affected by this disease. 

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