Red Faced Runners Update #1

Red Faced Carolyn after this morning’s run!

Okay, so it’s pretty early to be posting an update for the Red Faced Runners, but I had such a great response to yesterday’s post and I am really excited about this whole thing.  Some of you signed on almost immediately, and some of you sound like you may need a little more coaxing, but let me tell you, if you put your mind to it, you can do this.  I want to cheer you on and I want you to cheer me on too.  We can do this together.

We’ve started a public facebook page where everyone who wants to be a part of the challenge can sign on.  We can update each other on our progress and support everyone in their goals and efforts.  Beginners and seasoned runners all sharing their trials, their experiences, their good days and their bad days.  This, my friends, is how we will accomplish what we set out to accomplish.  So please join us over at http://www.facebook.com/RedFacedRunnersChallenge.  I can’t wait to see you there.  Wear that red face with pride!

I also wanted to tell you about my run this morning.  It was one of my slowest runs in a while, 4.23 miles in 36 minutes and 51 seconds (average pace 8:42).  But it was a huge accomplishment for me, and it was a great run.  Here’s why…

I consider myself a “seasoned” runner, having completed 5 half-marathons and multiple shorter races.  I’ve even placed in my age-group and gender for a few shorter races.  But my running has taken a hit lately and I need a support group like the Red Faced Runners as much as anyone else.  I took it easy after my last half-marathon in March, where I scored a personal record of 1:45:31, thinking that it would be easy to get my speed back when I was ready.  But it hasn’t been easy at all, actually.   I’ve had a number of setbacks which have kept me from feeling like I am making any improvement.   The most recent setback has been a nasty sinus infection that has affected my strength and speed.  Even climbing the stairs feels like a huge amount of work!

As a relatively speedy runner, I’m always trying to improve my times.  Up until the past month or so, my average pace for a 4 to 5 mile run had dropped to below 8 minutes.  But lately my legs have felt dead out there, and I am slogging through those runs and hating every minute.  I’ve even had to take walking breaks on a few of them, to catch my breath.  It’s been more than a little disheartening.  The Red Faced Runners has been my lifeline back into a love for running.  They remind me that putting in the effort, getting out there, is what counts the most.  And today’s run felt great.  I reminded myself to slow down and enjoy it.   I know it will take a while to recover my strength, and that’s okay.  Just like a beginner, I need to work back up to it slowly.  I need to set realistic goals and expectations and not push myself beyond what my body can truly handle.  So on today’s run, I kept the Red Faced Runners, and all of you, at the front of my  mind.

I can do this.  And so can you.

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Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing Carolyn. It’s good to know that no matter what level runner we are, we all struggle and need the support of friends cheering us on.

  2. Yes! Our little group has really helped me on those days when I just want to hang out in my pj’s all morning. ;) I’m glad you shared what you are struggling with…I think it’s helpful to know that even “seasoned” runners struggle sometimes, too.

  3. Thanks for sharing your struggles. I’ve been having the same trouble lately. My plan is to slow down and build myself back up to where I was (basically starting in the middle of the Couch to 5K program). This challenge came at a perfect time!

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