Father, daughter find way to bond through running

Jamila Allen (left) and her father, Clement, are regulars on the marathon and triathlon circuit.
Photo by St. Clair Murraine


By St. Clair Murraine
Outlook staff writer

Clement Allen and his daughter, Jamila, are still holding onto a new year’s resolution that they made nine years ago.
The goal that the Tallahassee father-daughter duo set in 2015 was to run a marathon. They are still running, completing the Tallahassee Marathon every year since.

When they aren’t running marathons, they take on an even more grueling challenge of competing in triathlons.

On Sunday, they competed in the half marathon. Dad, 53, finished in a time of 2:04:26, while his 28-year-old daughter took 1:47:39 to finish the course.

When Clement, who works in the computer science department at FAMU, first tossed around the idea he didn’t do so with the intent of earning some of the accolades they have. He suggested racing because he thought his daughter, a former softball player for Chiles High School, would benefit  from it.

Since they competed in the Freedom Springs Triathlon in Marianna, they’ve done at least four others in places like Chattanooga and Maryland.

Their to-do list includes the Hawaii Ironman.

They didn’t win an overall title this past weekend, but they were just as jovial as if they were champions. Having one more opportunity to bond was just as big as winning, they said.

And, to see Tallahassee like they don’t usually do.

“It’s interesting to see some of the areas on foot as opposed to riding in the car,” he said. “I find that kind of fascinating and it’s kind of cool being in the middle of the street, looking through the downtown area, through FAMU and FSU.”

Their biggest challenge was the weather conditions. They had to endure a hilly course in strong winds and drizzle throughout the race.

So did Bryan Morseman, who took the overall marathon title for a third time since he first ran the race in 2014. Changes in the course also was a factor in his winning time of 2:26: 55, he said.

It was his 54th win in 86 starts.

“The wind was definitely slowing me down,” said Morseman, a 32-year-old from Bath, N.Y. “Fortunately I got my second wind around mile 19 and I had a tailwind for three or four miles. It helped save my legs a little bit.”

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