Running Slow is Hard! or It’s 5:00 Somewhere.

Is it wine-o’clock yet? No? Darn it!

Before I start in with the whining part of this post, let me tell you that my run this morning was great. It was the first day of this year’s Galloway Marathon Training Class, and you may recall that I signed up to be a Pace Group Leader. I’m really excited to (hopefully) help other people have a great experience with the marathon, like I had last year. It was really wonderful to see some familiar faces, and some new faces today. I’m really, really excited.

I’m also worried. Let me confess something, dear readers. [deep breath] My name is Joni, and I am a worrier. I really am. I don’t worry about myself so much, but I worry like crazy about other people, especially people I care about or am in any way responsible for.

I knew, intellectually, that we would run faster than our training pace today. I remember from last year that it is hard to get folks to slow down and run at the training pace at first. I was prepared for that. What I was not prepared for was my own reaction. I started to worry about my pace group buddies hurting themselves. Not today, since we only ran 3 miles. No, I started worrying today, about how they’ll hurt themselves on the 12 mile run or the 14 mile run if we don’t slow our pace down. (Some of my friends are totally laughing at me right now, because unlike me, they saw this coming.)

Yes, I recognize that this is actually a bit ridiculous. Stop rolling your eyes like that, they’ll get stuck that way. ūüėõ For one thing, this was a short run so training pace isn’t so critical. But it is helpful to learn how to run training pace now, so that it’s easier to do on the long ones. Also, I may be a Pace Group Leader, but I’m not actually the boss of anyone. If they over-do it and hurt themselves, I am not at fault. But I really, really, really want them all to make it through training to the marathon and have a great time doing it. I had so much fun last year, and I didn’t suffer any serious injuries. I want to share that!

So the lesson, for me, from today’s run is to take a deep breath and let the stress and worry go. There is no way I can ensure that every person in my pace group will have a great experience. There is no way I can¬†guarantee¬†that every person in my pace group will make it through training uninjured. I just have to do my best to share what I’ve learned and let everybody find their own way. In the mean time, I’ll have a glass of wine as soon as it’s socially acceptable.

Only 167 days (and 16 hours) until my second Missoula Marathon. This time I know I can do it.

 

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New Year, New Goals

Well, I did it. I committed to being a Pace Group Leader for this year’s Galloway Marathon Training Class. Class starts on January 27th and I’m really excited. I had such a great experience last year and I really hope I can help others have a great experience this year. I’m especially excited about any first-time marathoners in my pace group.¬†I’m actually really pleased that I kept this blog during my own first attempt at the marathon. I plan to use it to help remember what it’s like that first time through, so I can be a better PGL.

I’ve been running more regularly than not, since my last post. I’ve missed a few runs here and there, but overall, I’m on track. And I know that being in the class will help as well.

As I’ve mentioned previously, my goal races for this year are the Pengelly Double Dip in June and the Missoula Marathon in July. In the mean time, I’m also planning to run the Snow Joke and any other fun races that don’t conflict with marathon training.

And before I forget, I should tell you that I accomplished something today. I actually ran a whole mile without a walk break! I’ve never done that before ever in my life! Now, to be fair, I haven’t actually tried to run without walk breaks in quite some time. I’ve been very faithful to the run/walk/run method because it really works for me. But this weekend I washed my Gymboss timer and I haven’t replaced it yet.

When I went out on my run today I was a little dismayed to be without my trusty “coach”. But rather than allow the situation to depress me, I decided it would be the perfect time to see if I could run a mile without a break. So after my five minute warm-up walk, I pressed start on my GPS watch and started out running nice and slow. As I kept running, I was really surprised and pleased not to feel tuckered out. When my watch beeped for 1 mile I was shocked! I wasn’t struggling at all. Just then a passing runner commented on my calf-sleeves, so we had a nice little chat until he pulled too far ahead. In all, I ran 1.25 miles before I decided that was enough for the day and went back to run/walk/run. I did my best to approximate a 30/30 split using my watch and counting my breaths. All in all, it was a great run.

Running a mile without a walk break may not seem like much to most runners, but for me it’s an accomplishment, and I’m very satisfied. Over the next several months I will probably continue to add distance on until I can run a few miles without a break. To be honest, though, I love run/walk/run and I don’t really plan to attempt any serious distances without it.

And here’s a bit of news that is specifically for the ladies who read my blog. I’ve decided to take the “Instead Softcup Challenge“. I’ve been looking for a better feminine¬†hygiene¬†solution for long runs and came across a blog post about the challenge at Slow is the New Fast. Friends have recommended similar products in the past, but I’ve never actually tried them, partly due to the expense of some of the options. I thought this challenge would be a great way to try out this type of product. I’ve just gotten my supplies in the mail today, so sometime in the next few months, I’ll be posting my review. In the mean time, if any of you ladies are interested in taking the challenge, check out the link. They’ll even reimburse you for your race entrance fees for one upcoming race, as long as you post your product review before the end of June.

I hope to post more regularly once class begins. I’ll actually have things to post about after all. I hope you’re all still running happy!