Strength in numbers

When you are training for a marathon, you do crazy things. I suppose some would say running a marathon is crazy in itself, huh?

So guess what I did on my one and only day to sleep in this weekend [curses to working on Sunday]. I got up at 6:30 a.m., drove down to the lake front amidst a fear-inducing highway detour [yes, of course I got lost. Would you expect otherwise?], and went for a twelve mile run.

You see my running partner had to golf all day long which meant I would be left to my own devices for The Long Run. A local running club hosts build up runs each Saturday before the marathon. The problem is the runs start at 8 a.m. and I get uncharacteristically shy around hoards of runners. What if I'm the slowest one out there? What if I have a bad run and make a fool out of myself? What if I poop my pants? What if someone wants to run with me and actually converse during the run? Nate and I don't talk when we run together, we jam out to music and get lost in our own little worlds. Does that make us weird?

After stewing over this potentially scary group of fellow runners, I decided that I just needed to suck it up and go. After all, there would be water stations and food waiting for me which would be a luxury compared to our typical runs. I showed up with no time to spare, thanks to the stupid detour, and walked up to a group of at least 60. Yikes!

I didn't exactly reach out and befriend anyone during the run and therefore mostly ran by myself again. But there were always runners in front and behind me which helped me keep a good pace and provided for some fun people watching time. I may or may not have eaves dropped on a few conversations, too, which is always entertaining. The 'hardest core award' goes to the sixty year old dude with "26.6" tattooed on his arm---I made sure to hold my breath when I passed him, for fear that he'd trip me and scream "nobody passes me, biyatch!" Which totally didn't happen, obviously.

Since I wore our pimptastic Garmin I noticed that I was running faster than normal throughout the entire run, and yet I didn't feel tired somehow. So I went with the flow and plugged away at the course. It was only set up for ten miles but my training schedule calls for twelve, so I took the liberty to add two more miles onto the end. Which made the gods angry, apparently, because it started to pour on me. When I say 'pour' I mean cats and dogs adhered themselves to my slick body. I could barely see two feet in front of me but I was determined to finish my run---I guess running with a group is truly inspirational, huh?

I finished my 12 miles in 1:52:00 which is a heck of a lot faster than our 10 minute mile average. Come to think of it, a lot of our runs have averaged closer to 9 minute miles, which seems like a freaking sprint to my slow legs. When I finished I was so proud of myself that I even managed to talk to a few runners. Made conversation. Found that they really weren't scary at all and were actually quite nice. We stood around in the pouring rain, with our cute running clothes plastered to our bodies, and slammed water/Gatorade/and orange slices---and it felt great to be a part of a group.

So I might drag my running partner to these runs on Saturdays because let's face it: running for absurd amounts of time is a whole lot better when you are doing it as a group. I don't know why I didn't realize this sooner. And I'm so glad I didn't poop my pants.


  1. Ah yes, the golf arguement. I applaud you for joining a group - I've talked myself out of those for the same reasons you listed!

    Lol at the cats and dogs and the 60 year old, I'm glad in general that you had a great experience!

  2. I started with running in a group, which was awesome. I got so used to it... so now that I am left to run on my own... I don't do as well. :(
    I hope you and Nate do go every Sat., I met some amazing people that way.

  3. This post makes me willing to try our local running group, I'll have to go next weekend. I'm like you, I'm always worried someone wants to talk to me, there's still some of that high schoolness in me :)

  4. Wow, nice job!

    I agree - running in a big group definitely helps, but it can be scary! I'm glad you didn't poop your pants, too. ;)

  5. I am really glad that you didn't poop your pants too! Congrats on the 12 mile run. I seriously don't know how you can do that. Truly amazing!!!

  6. you crack me up. i read this post outloud to my husband. i died when i read about the 26.6 tattoo! are you getting one of those after you finish the marathon?

  7. Yay, great job on the 12 miles! Now that my tri is over, I am planning to start attending these runs. Maybe I'll see you there!

  8. Yay for no poopy pants!

    This entry makes my legs and lungs hurt. But great job on the faster times!

  9. I'm so glad you didn't poop your pants either (although poop is funny)! LOL! I'm so impressed with your running skillz!!!

  10. As a fellow long-distance runner, I totally get the poop your pants part. Some may think it's a joke; I know otherwise. :)


Thank you for taking the time to comment on my blog. Sorry that commenting through Blogger can be a royal pain. I'm glad you are commenting despite that, and please email me if you are having issues.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...