Tried It Tuesday

I’m linking up with Sara from Lake Shore Runner for her Tried it Tuesday!

But before I link it up… please don’t forget to vote for me here for the Cover of RW!

I’m not quite sure when my fear of running with others developed, but I avoid it at all costs. I ran cross country in high school so you would think that I am used to running with others. But in actuality we ran a mile until we were out of the coaches sight and then sat in the woods and gossiped until it was time for us to leisurely walk back… #dedication. I also refused to eat anything healthy which drove my organic-loving, vegan coach nuts. Oh how the times have changed….

Rope ankle bracelet. Dripping swag circa 2005

Maybe I’ve become high maintenance, but I like running on my own. I can start my run when I want, run at whatever pace I want, and run where ever I want. And since I’m super Type-A, I like to know every detail of the course I set out to run. I’m not the most flexible person on the planet (I know everyone who is reading this who knows me is saying “duh”).

#ForeverAlone

Over the years, I’ve become a self conscious runner. I always think I’m slowing others down. That I am guilting someone to stick with me for the run.  The only person I run with is my boyfriend. And even then we have an agreement that we don’t have to stick together. If one of us is feeling good, we drop the other and just go. However, we are competitive so you can imagine how that goes…

He’s so happy I got him into running. Especially early in the morning. Thanksgiving morning to be exact. You’re welcome.

Back to my point. Recently I made the decision that I want to do things that make me a bit uncomfortable. Part of my New Year’s Resolution (besides quit drinking Diet Coke – LOL), was to start getting outside my comfort zone.

Goal: run with others to get faster

Solution: joining the Darien Run Club

At a local road race last May, I ended up meeting two girls who were also local and FAST runners. We became Facebook friends because duh, Facebook confirms friendships, and every so often we would like one another running related photos. About 3 months ago I noticed they started a run club out of Darien. I was still commuting in and out of the city, so a 630pm start time was just not in the cards. But now that I conveniently work locally (0.5 miles from said run club) I felt like I had no excuse not to go.

Last Tuesday I went to my first run club. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t nervous. I had run earlier that morning and was hoping to do the shorter of the two loops that afternoon. I got to the club a bit early so I and sat in my car and watched people filter in (I promise I wasn’t as creepy as that sounds). I remember thinking “no one knows I’m here I could always leave…”, but thats embarrassing and totally lame so I put my big girl pants on and walked over to introduce myself.

You know what. Everyone was super nice. And you know what is even cooler – they encouraged me to push myself and help lead the longer run. I told everyone to just drop me if I was holding them back. But no one left me. Their energy was contagious and I got WAY excited for our run. When my watch beeped for our first mile I was actually in shock. I hadn’t dropped a sub 7 mile on a run since my 10K in early April.

Not exactly even but I’ll take it.

Oh also – they did an active warm up and stretch. I cannot tell you the last time I did either of those things. But you know what, I wasn’t sore the next day. I’d like to say I’m shocked, but I’m going to go ahead and say I’m just stubborn.

And after each run, they all head to a local bar for extended happy hour specials. I feel like these are my kind of people.

I’m so happy I challenged myself to get uncomfortable. Not only did I meet some great people, but I had a pretty awesome tempo run to boot. I plan on going every Tuesday night I can. In the end, I allowed myself to meet some awesome people and phenomenal athletes. And I just might get a little faster because of it : ) . Win win.


Do you like running solo or do you prefer group runs? I still think I like going solo for longer runs, but after last week, I think group runs for speed work, a tough work out, or a tempo run is my new fave : )

What new activity would you do to step out of your comfort zone?

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16 thoughts on “Tried It Tuesday

  1. I run mostly solo unless my roommate happens to join me for a run but I would prefer to run in a group. The running group around here is very expensive to belong to so I’ll have to wait until I graduate and get a real job. I can’t wait to join because I know in the end it will make me a faster and stronger runner!

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  2. I get a good mix of solo runs and group runs. If I run with other people for too many days in a row, I crave a run by myself. But now, because I’m used to my run groups like November Project, if I don’t run with anyone else for a long time, I start to miss running with friends. I’m glad you gave it a shot and surprised yourself!

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  3. I’m in the same boat as you! Always want to join something like this but nervous to start out. A local running shop just started a run club and they give you $20 in store credit for completing 10 runs. I’m so glad I finally bit the bullet and joined because I had a great time and can’t wait for the next session! Sometimes the things that take us out of our comfort zone are the best things for us. Great job on your run!

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  4. Ahhhh, high school cross country. I used to love hiding in the woods. I’ve mostly been a solo runner for the same reasons… I’ve always been self conscious about holding people back. I recently started running with my dads running group and I LOVE it. It makes long runs fly by and we usually don’t even worry about pace. I still do my tempo runs solo but it’s nice to have people to talk to during long slow runs.

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  5. I don’t think I’m afraid of running with others, I just prefer to run alone. That’s so great you’re pushing yourself to get out of your comfort zone, though!

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  6. I usually run my workout or long run in the AM and then if the group is meeting later, I go a few slower miles with them. The goal of our group is to get more people running, so we go slow and have fun. I enjoy it! I’ve made a lot of friends in my community 🙂

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  7. I usually run solo but don’t mind running with others. I do run with my fiancé Tyler, who is blind, so we run tandem. Yep, I am that girl who drags her BF by a rope 😉 haha! I do have an itch to join a running club because I want to learn how to run faster. I just did a marathon and to be honest by old ass knees aren’t enjoying the uber long runs and figured Id try to decrease my time for shorter runs! Thoughts? anyone want to come play in DC with me 🙂 Also, do you recommend a watch that tracks times?

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    1. Um HI! I love that you commented xoxoxo you are so inspirational : ) The best part of run club for me, is that because I’m such a competitive person, I like to push myself to keep up with others. I always find it’s easy for me to start slower/stay slower for a run when I run alone. And yes! Start racing 5ks! Its the hardest distance in my opnion but even though you’re running shorter, your overall time for long runs (in the future) will decrease too! And yes I want to come run with you in DC!!!!! I use the Nike GPS watch, but have used a Garmin in the past (my boyfriend uses it now)

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