It’s been about five years since I ran with any kind of official group, basically since I ran cross-country during my freshman year of college. Pretty much all my running since then has either been solo or with one to two other people and/or Pascal. My dad has been telling me for a long time that I should find some kind of group to run with if I want to be successful in training. I had been looking at the Red Lizards Running Club website for a long time, but it wasn’t until Rozie invited me to their weekly Monday night run with Nike, that I actually participated.
So last night I went out for my first group run in forever, and it was weirdly reminiscent of a high school cross-country practice. I even ran by Lincoln on the way over, and for half a second thought I saw Mr. Bailey (my former xc coach). Before we headed out on the run some guy got up on a chair and gave a little pep talk and congratulated some lady that had run 1000 miles during the Nike runs… it gave me another flashback to Mr. Bailey, although his pep talks sometimes turned into extremely long speeches, and this one was pretty short. Then we went on to run almost the exact same route that I did at least once a week in high school. It was pretty fun – I had avoided doing this route very often during the past few years because I got so sick of it in high school, but it was good to be back.
The best part of the whole experience happened right as we were leaving NikeTown to set out on our run. All of the employees of the store started clapping, I guess some motivational tactic? But when I looked up, every single one of them was either not paying attention and talking to another employee while they were clapping for us, or watching us and looking super pissed off. For some reason I really enjoyed this. It’s not like it’s hard to clap for 20 seconds twice a week – I guess I wouldn’t like being forced to do it, but they really made it look like a miserable undertaking.
Later when we were on the Springwater Corridor, we ran past a couple of people and they started cheering for us for passing them. I guess the fact that I find this amusing shows how out of practice at being part of a team or group I am. The only times I can remember having true feelings of team spirit in the last five years are for the Blazers or my IM soccer team at Whitman for a few months a year, and occasionally during a game of flippy cup/beer pong. I’m getting more into the rec soccer team I’m on now too, but these feelings are slow coming. I guess I have to be truly invested in a group before I can act like I care about it at all. Invested or drunk. Some amalgamation of the two is preferred.
Miles run this week: 11
Miles run in 2010: 88 (which somehow comes out to 393,504 miles more than you, Chris McDonald)