Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Training Team

I went out to meet the training team for my long run again last week. The young girl that is registered for the same race I would like to do, showed up with a buddy, said hi, and they went and ran on their own.

I ran again with Kim, the nice person who dropped back for me last week. By mile 2 we couldn't even see anyone else running, and neither of us know the area very well, and we missed a turn on the planned route.

Of course we didn't realize we missed a turn for quite awhile.
I had the route on a small piece of paper and saved on my phone, but we could't figured it out...so we just ran our own route.


I am a little frustrated with myself that I can't keep up, and I am beginning to realize this isn't really a team designed to help someone train for their first marathon. This seems more like, lets meet up and run together so we aren't lonely while we train kind of thing...
There are "coaches", but we aren't assigned to anyone, so there isn't really anyone for me to talk to. I have chatted with a few folks as they run by me in the beginning of my run, and that's about it.

It seems, I am the pokiest of the bunch for sure. I am not sure what to do in the weeks to come, I guess, I will have to see if my sole run buddy is willing to run with me, even if we get lost.

The problem with getting lost wasn't getting the miles in, it was missing the water stops.

I was fine running ten miles with no water, but my run buddy was pretty thirsty. I actually ran all my 12 milers in half training with no hydration. I am just used to it, but two hours is about my limit.

I do need to experiment with carrying hydration on long runs, and a few different kind of fuels, on top of running distances I have never tackled before. I was really looking forward to the group motivation, because those experiences will be pushing my comfort zone for sure.

I think I am going to skip group this Saturday because there is a 100% chance of rain, and the thought of running two hours in the rain doesn't appeal to me. Friday, after work I am going to try to knock out the 12 miler on my plan.

I am torn...I am not sure if I should try to keep going to meet with the group, and see if Kim will still run with me, or just plan my routes near home, drive ahead, stash some water along the route and do the best I can. Trying to tackle 16, 18, and 20 miles alone seems pretty daunting...

The one great thing about the actual race (the road race) is water every two miles :)  I keep telling myself it will feel easier race day, if I can just figure out the training.

So, any wisdom, thoughts, or tips that got you through training? Would you just train on your own? try to hang with the group? Would you run two hours in the rain on purpose?

22 comments:

  1. I don't know anyone who runs my pace and also runs long. I find it hard to run with others who are faster or slower. I've tried. I wish I had someone to help break up the monotony on really long runs, but I go solo. On my normal route, I circle around my house every 2 1/2 miles and stash fluid in my mailbox.

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    1. I tried doing the loop in my neighborhood and put water in my mailbox on my long runs and I found I am too tempted to just stop that close to home lol I shortened a few runs that way- I need to work on my discipline! I usually run away from house and loop back and then i have no choice lol

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  2. I would not do any training runs in the rain. Group runs can be very motivating if you have someone to run with at your level. It's hard to complete long runs without a buddy. -L

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    1. I am not a fan of rain, I have dealt with it in a race situation and a few short training runs, but I try to avoid it for long runs too.

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  3. I agree. I run my long runs alone. I usually run without water except in the summer. I have to stop halfway. And no I wouldn't do it in the rain.

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    1. Summer is hard, I wear my pack on my back, but I never felt like it "disappeared " I am still trying to figure out a hydration device I love.

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  4. Well, I've told you my story before, I thought I liked group running until I hit mile 8 and then all I could think was "I wish they would stop talking!" LOL I really like running in solitude, but it sounds like you enjoy the group aspect. Kim seems like a really nice person and it sounds like she is totally willing to run with you!

    Have you looked to see if there are any other training groups in the area? The two main clubs in my city group people up by pace -- everything from 6 min/pace to 13 min/pace so everyone always has a few buddies. Maybe there's another bigger group in your area like that you can join!

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    1. Your story with the group makes me laugh lol I would love to have the water stops and a little conversation to distract me, but that doesn't seem to be how it's going to go. I haven't decided what I am doing yet this week for my long run. There is only one other training group I know of, but it costs a lot more, so I guess solo is my option if I decide not to meet with the group anymore.

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  5. Karen, you are on a blogging roll! I love all these frequent posts, as I am still "running vicariously through you" until I am ready to get back into running.

    I feel you and your observations with this running group you've found. When I joined my first running group (Los Angeles) it was so large that I was able to find a running group of 20 people, all of whom were running my poky pace (10:45/mile). Then we moved to San Diego and the running group was smaller and more of the people were faster, but there were still enough people that I didn't feel too intimidated.

    I hope you find a running group that is more suited to your pace. I'd be pretty bummed if I missed the water stops, too, as that is another reason to run with a running group.

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    1. I know I don't know what's wrong with me about posting! lol highly unusual to be consistent!
      Water stops were a big motivation for me to join, since I do not like carrying hydration with me. I was thinking there would be a least a handful of folks who were around my pace. It's over a 100 people. We are close on paces, I do feel pokey at times, but it's still faster than I can walk it lol
      This season of your life it will probably be hard for you to find time to run, but it will happen one day :)

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  6. Hmm, bummer that the group doesn't really function as a team or group. I run all of my runs alone and it can be intimidating heading out for a 20 miler, but on race day I think it pays off because it's so exciting to have fans and runners to talk to. Another option is to ask other friends to join you for part of your long runs to break it up a bit. Run 10 on your own and then meet someone for 10 (always nicer to have company in the late miles).

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    1. I know, I hoped it would be more of a team! Since there are coaches I pictured things going a little differently in my head. I am trying to work on visualizing me, myself, and I running those distances though. I have felt in the past, it would be beyond me to get through 20 miles alone, but I am starting to feel like I can do it at least! I really only have one person I can run with, who is going to Disney with me, but her half training schedule isn't lining up with mine. Maybe in Jan. when she hits longer distances we will do a little together hopefully.

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  7. I run all my training runs alone, including my long runs. I like to focus on my pace and how I'm feeling. I don't like talking when I'm running.

    Sounds like you haven't found the right training partners. That's pretty tough--you have to find someone who is running or willing to run at your pace.

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    1. I am still undecided about the weeks to come, but I will just suck it up and try alone if all else fails :)

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  8. Aww man, well, I am happy you have Kim, to run with! I bet she would like to meet up with you, if you guys are the same pace and not really hanging with the rest! You could totally set up your own stops, or starting carrying a handheld Nathan!

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    1. I will see if Kim is going to run with me. She really wants stay with the group and have water stops, so I am holding her back. I do feel like I will push this somehow :) I have never tried a handheld!

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  9. I am part of a running group that I meet up with occasionally. I love them a lot, but I gotta say, I very much prefer running solo, for various reasons. I meet up with the group for runs every now and then because I want to maintain those friendships but I really just prefer to knock out my training runs on my own.

    I know you hate the thought of really long runs on your own, and I can understand that, but I would really suggest you try at least one. Even if you plan on running the race with a pace team or group, this will be good mental training for the demands of running 26.2 miles. Load up an iPod with tunes or a podcast, drop water bottles in strategic points along your route or carry them with you, and just hit the trails. Afterward you may decide you never want to run solo again, but at least now you know what it's like and you're stronger for having done it.

    It may also be worth checking out if there are other groups in your area that are beginner-friendly, or maybe you could start your own. It hardly seems worth going to group runs if you're always missing out on the group aspect!

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    1. I think I will try at least one long run alone, I am still undecided what to do this week, i am just watching the forecast to see if I need to adjust my run. I do love music when I run :) I am going to drop water bottles and just do one of the long ones and see how it goes! If I decided not to do group, I guess i will be doing a bunch like that lol

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  10. I would not train two hours in the rain unless I absolutely had to! I would try to change my long run to a different day. :)

    I understand your dilemma. Maybe some of the runners in your group know others that run the same pace as you and could hook you up with their info and you could train with them?

    Do you get bored running alone? Do music/podcasts help? I can zone out for hours as long as I have a podcast, but I know that is just me and not everyone is like that.

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    1. I don't get bored usually but I start to feel a challenged at that two hour mark mostly because I am not usually carrying hydration and that will have to change. I do love music and that is something I always need! I haven't found a podcast yet that could distract me enough. I use to walk and hike for three hours at a time quite often, but I get very intimidated when I think about running that long!

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  11. Sad to hear the group isn't as great as you had hoped.. But you deserve a big applause for still going though, if it was me I'd probably come home crying after the first day then never ever go back haha. Good thing you've got Kim. Why don't you ask her if she and you can run long runs together? Doing long runs alone is hard.. I'm glad I have my mom to run with so I don't have to worry much about that.
    And I wouldn't run 2 hours in the rain unless I absolutely HAD to.

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    1. That is so awesome you run with your mom :) I will let you know what happens this weekend for my long run lol I so hoped since the group had coaches it would feel more team like!

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