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Never Too Slow

The “I’m too slow” or “They’re too fast” logic is what stopped me from joining a great friend at track workouts for almost a year. This same logic is what I hear many of you repeating when you say you really WISH you had people to run with, but are too afraid to go to a running group.

I have now participated in 10 different run clubs in cities across the country and you will never be too slow for the group.
Most groups break down in to different pace groups as they start:
- There are fast people
- There are middle of the packers
- There are slower runners
- There are people transition with walk/run
- There are almost ALWAYS walkers. People who are new, people who are injured, people who just want to walk and have no desire to run.

As a part of this community you are embraced and welcomed. Truly, I have never once met a true runner who wasn’t beyond excited to bring someone else in to the running fold!!! And if you are slower than most of the group, guess what…you will get faster by being around them because it provides encouragement! Most of us do not start out fast, we get there because of inspiration, motivation and the crazy runner’s high that we have all latched on to.

All of that being said, if you do find yourself at a running club where you feel like an outsider because of your pace, not because you are the new kid on the block, realize they aren't the spirit of true runners and keep looking…or per my post yesterday Start Your own Run Club!!!! And if you are worried about being too slow to start a club then call yourselves “The Slow Runners” or “Turtle Club” and get on with having fun!

Many of you had great thoughts on getting over the “too slow” barrier, so please chime in! I want everyone to have the confidence and pleasure of trying out a running club.
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Gratitude Journal
May 17
I am grateful for a good annual reviewsig
I am grateful for my iPhone not dying yesterday
I am grateful I remembered to bring hot tea with me
I am grateful for iPhone apps that make tracking things easy
I am grateful for my friend Kim

20 comments:

Aneta said...

because of your post yesterday, i started a post/discussion on daily mile and runner's world to see if there are other runners in my area who are also looking for a running group or partner.
thnx amanda

Christy @ My Dirt Road Anthem: A Runner's Blog said...

Great post, those thoughts held me back for years, and now that I would run with a group, I live too far away from any of them to do it regularly.

Amber said...

Thank you for this post! I am a race walk coach and sometimes runner and very slow triathlete. It doesn't even matter if you are the slowest one out there, just as long as you are out there trying!! :)

misszippy said...

So true...runners need to be supportive of one another. Everyone starts somewhere; everyone has a different speed. We're all in it for the love of the same sport.

Brian said...

I think one of the neat things about running is how it means different things to different people and there's something positive you can take from it no matter what your pace or your goals. Of course there are things like Boston that have pace requirements, but in general there's no such thing as "too slow".

Lisa said...

oddly, my running club is called TURTLE CLUB but most of the runners are really fast. I'm one of the only true turtles! But I agree, never too slow. And I wouldn't trade my run group for anything!

Samantha said...

This is such a great post. I needed this reminder!

I'm one of the slower runners in my running group but it doesn't really matter much. There are others with me, and even if I'm last the rest of the group is at the end telling me "good run" just like they did with all the other runners.

Even if you're the slowest in the group, you're faster than the people at home on their couches.

Errign said...

Love these run group posts. I'm not a super fast runner, but the running groups I found in Asheville are cool in that they have different pace and distance group runs!

SlimKatie said...

Thank you for posting this! I just started running a little over a year ago, and I'm terrified of running in a group for the very reason of "I'm too slow" and "I'm not a REAL runner, so I won't fit in". I just might give it a shot ;)

katierunsthis said...

Run groups are so important in keeping people motivated when they are first starting out! When I lived in SC, a few friends and I wanted to get into one of the local running groups. We went...ONCE. It was very obvious that everyone there was more "elite" than us. Not to be deterred, the three of us started our own group...the SMRG (Saturday Morning Run Group). What started out as a group of 3 eventually turned into a group of about 10! We supported each other and we eventually ALL got faster. I totally encourage people who are hesitant to at least give a group run a try. And if that particular group isn't for you, get out there and start your own thing!

The Marathon Diaries said...

I needed this little push I have been pushing joining a running club aside for a couple of months for this reason... I'm not gonna lie. I am totally nervous about not being able to "keep up" but I am gonna DO IT! SO thank you

Heather said...

After a few months I am finally beginning to get to know some people on my team. Partly because the coach mixed up training and partly because one of the runners got injured giving me a partner.
So far I am down a minute per mile. So I think I will keep hanging around until they all love me!! (Whether they like it or not!)
I wonder if the same applies to bike groups. I am totally intimidated to join a ride.

Carly said...

I love this....my pace has held me back from joining a new club. I ran with one before and loved it. I think it is time to start again.

Jess @ Blonde Ponytail said...

Great point! It's easy to fall prey to the comparision trap with running, but it IS a community!

Char said...

I did exactly the same and I wasted all that time not being in a running group because of my fears. I found out that I wasn't too slow. No one's too slow. The faster people don't ridicule the slower ones or snigger behind their hands - they actively welcome you into their fold. Running groups can be some of the most inclusive groups around.

Runblondie26 said...

5 groups currently? Wow girl, here do you find the energy?!


Runners are a very inclusive group, people need not be scared to join. It's the fear of pain keeping me away from group workouts, lol. Speedwork hurts!

Michelle said...

Thanks for this post - I'm one of those who would like to join a running group but haven't out of fear of being the "slow one." Thanks for the encouragement to get out there and find one...or start one :)

DaphneB said...

Thank you for this post! I too, am afraid of being "the slow one". Well, I was until I did a 5k with some friends that are much faster than I. She stuck with me the whole time, and at one point said "I'm not leaving you. It's much easier to cross the finish line when you have someone to do it with." Runners Rock!

Kim said...

Great post!

Carrie said...

You have any recommendations for a running club for a newb (slow) runner in Miami?

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