A common trait that people always seem to write on their resumes is "able to multi-task." Employers often look at this as a good thing - that one is productive and can get many things done at once. But I believe, multi-tasking isn't always great. When you try to do too much at once, you almost always end up doing nothing very effectively.
Such had been the case with me for the past several months. If you're a new reader to my little blog, let me fill you in.
Last Fall, at about the same time, I became a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House and joined a running club. I was so excited for both new ventures! The problem was, they were on successive evenings and were both about 30-35 minutes away from my house (each way). Having to battle traffic to make it there each week, on time, was both stressful and exhausting.
I got burnt out. I found myself skipping one, or the other, or both. For the past few weeks I struggled on what to do about it and finally decided that I had to take a break from both of them. Hopefully I'll be able to return at a later time.
But I still loved the idea of both volunteering and being part of a run club. I found some new, more flexible volunteering projects that I could do from home, but still was looking for a new run group.
Lo and behold, I logged on to Facebook and saw my local Lululemon store post a reminder of their Tuesday night Run Club! I had completely forgotten about it! they started it at the start of the year, but I remember telling the manager that I couldn't go because that was my volunteer night. Well now I'm free so last week I went to check it out!
The group meets at a track that's MUCH closer to my house, and its a small group of all different levels of runners. There are short distance runners, triathletes, middle-of-the-pack runners, and some who just signed up for their first race.
At the first workout I went to, I honestly thought I'd show up at the store and we'd go for a leisurely run around town. But I was pleasantly surprised to find that there's a coach (who's a triathlete) who puts the group through a structured workout every week!
At that first workout he had us running 400's; i.e., one full lap around the track at a sprint. We'd recover for a minute, then go again. We did this for what seemed like forever (actually it was more like 45 minutes). I came thisclose to reaching the puke level. This speed stuff on the track is not really my thing. I am more or less the kind of runner that can push myself with distance, not speed. But its good for me to mix things up and doing track workouts like these can improve my speed and overall performance.
Last night was my second workout with the group. I was so tired after work I debated not going, but having skipped my morning workout, I forced myself to go. And I'm glad I did.
After a short warm-up, we did 4 x 1 mile repeats. Having just ran 17 miles 2 days prior, with another long one planned for this weekend, I wasn't about to go all out and take myself to puke level again. Instead, I just tried to run at a steady pace. I was the slowest person there, but these days, that doesn't bother me. Putting in the work is what its all about. And I surprised myself with sub 10 min/miles!
While I used to run sub-10 miles a while ago (like 2 years ago), these days I seem to only run that when I'm sprinting a 5K. I'm starting to see progress already!
So not only am I enjoying this new club because:
1. ***Its closer to home*** 2. Its a small group 3. There are mixed levels
but also because:
4. I am used to running alone so this lets me run in a group and meet other people so running can also become a social thing for me. 5. Learn to run without music. I kid you not when I say I can't even run 2 blocks without music. This is a way for me to learn to adjust without it and explore of the benefits of running music free. 6. After the workout, there's always snacks and shopping at Lulu! :)
Actually I don't know if #6 is a good or bad thing. I was supposed to run an easy 2 miles tonight, but after the track workout, my body was screaming that it needed to rest, so I skipped it and went back to Lulu instead and ended up getting 2 new run shorts that were on sale.
Their marketing strategy of offering a free run club has already earned them their return on investment with me! :)