This weekend was my first group run with these ladies…
Yes, I know I signed up a few weeks ago, but I’ve been really intimidated to start running with them. Don’t they look hardcore?
Um, yes! After emailing back and forth with the team a couple of times, I asked what their average pace was for group runs on the weekends. I was assured not to worry since there were different running levels within the team, and that the slowest was at a 9 min/mile pace on Saturdays. I thought to myself: Okay, I can hang at a 9 min/mile pace for an hour. Nevermind that my average pace since last September has been around a 9:15-10 min/mile pace depending on the ice. Ha!!
I got a little burned out after my Half Ironman with hardcore training if you are new blog. Last year was a crazy one!
Anyhoo, the meetup this Saturday was about a 10 minute jog from my house so I decided to strap on cleats and jog on over there instead of driving. I was REALLY nervous. My stomach was up in my throat.
How far were they planning on going for the day? I only wanted to run about 6 miles, not 10, not 20.
What if I was soooo slow, that they had to kick me off the team?
I was basically having a nervous breakdown about 10 minutes before I left my house. Then, I remembered that this was the year of “No Fear.” I told myself to snap out of it, and just do it. The 10 minute warm-up run to the meetup place/house wasn’t a bad thing either. I was so worried about being late that I was sprinting. I didn’t have time to worry about what was going to happen once I got there.
When I got there, I was fine. All the girls formed a circle and introduced themselves (I wasn’t the only newbie), and then we discussed who was running what distances, and we headed outside. There were maybe 12 girls? Maybe more? Everyone was really nice! I, of course, was talking my head off. That is what I do when I am a) nervous b) excited or c) drunk. I wasn’t the last one, but I was definitely the first 2. I was like an excited chihuahua who couldn’t stop barking. A little ridiculous.
Adrenaline definitely took over my body the first couple of miles to help me get through the very uncomfortable pace. Then, I started to notice the VERY uncomfortable pace. My legs had not moved this fast since, hmmm, I don’t know, 4 months ago?
By now, there were only 4 girls left in the back. I was one of them. And I was hurting. My legs were yelling, “WTF are you doing to us?!! We are used to stopping ever so often so the dog can sniff around!” and my lungs were just giving me the silent treatment by making me feel like I was suffocating. The fastest group would run ahead, then loop back around to “sweep” us up, then run ahead again. They did this to make sure that we didn’t get lost, but I felt a little piece of my ego chip away with every single loop they made.
haha. A little dramatic right? But it was just a tad demoralizing. And it was the slap in face that I needed to make me realize that I have been slacking just a tad with my running workouts.
We finally made the turnaround (just the 4 of us), and I managed to survive the rest of the way back to the meetup house. The rest of the group was running at about a 7 to 7:30 min/mile pace for about 10 miles (some were doing 20 that day). About 5 minutes from the house, I asked the one of the girls if we were going to cool down or if this was supposed to be our “slowest run” that we didn’t need a cooldown. She answered with the latter. HA!
When we made it back to the house, we were greeted with snacks. We all talked some more and waited for the other girls to show up. It ended up being a great morning. The group is really friendly, and I know this is just what I need to take my running to the next level!
Wondering what the “slowest group,” aka my group, was running? 8:15 min/miles for 7 miles!! Did I mention that there were HILLS too? Lots! And I was talking most of the time. I guess that I wasn’t as out of shape as I thought, but I haven’t been pushing with my running the way I should be.
And do you want to know what else? I’m going back for more next weekend! Track workouts start in February, and I’m sure that there will be some good workouts if this is suppose to be our “slow” long run of the week.
Any group workouts this weekend? Do you ever pleasantly surprise yourself with your abilities?