Run Safe

Friday, November 21, 2014

Goal Setting

This time of year is all about the holidays.  However, while many runners also look forward to the holiday season it’s usually not the only thing on our minds. we are also busy planning our race schedule for the upcoming year.

As you begin to decide on your goals for 2015 here are some things to consider;

-Challenge yourself with a new distance.  Sure it might be intimidating and if you doubt you’re capable I think it’s even more of a reason to do it.  Don’t be afraid to fail.  Failure can be one of the most motivating consequences, if you let it be.  Besides, many times our fear of failure is more in our heads than in our abilities. You might just be surprised how truly awesome you are.

Pace a Friend.  A great introduction to longer distances is acting as a pacer for another runner.  In my first two ultra-marathons my cousin paced me for 18 miles and 15 miles.  He was a pretty novice runner at that point.  Not only did it allow him to experience the distance, it also gave him an opportunity to see firsthand the level of suffering I was experiencing.  I think it also gave him the confidence to know he was also more than capable of running those long distances.

-Plan a destination race.  Who doesn't enjoy traveling?  We just returned from Vegas for the Rock & Roll half marathon and had a blast.  We introduced lots of new runners to our club, had a great get together with current members and the event itself was awesome.  One thing you need to consider (outside of cost) is how will the destination race differ from other events?  Will you race it or just go to have fun?  How will the weather, elevation and terrain differ from what you’re used to?  By the way, we are going back to Vegas in 2015 J

-Mentor a new runner.  For me there is nothing more rewarding than seeing others succeed.  Make it your goal in 2015 to find that non-runner who doesn't believe they are capable and help them prove they are wrong.  Don’t get mad when others talk down about your running or make fun of it.  Many times this is happening because they don’t believe they are capable themselves.  How do I know?...because I used to be that person.

-Cross Train.  Cross training is a great way to prolong your running career and also a perfect way to improve your overall fitness.  Cycling, swimming, weights, rowing and Crossfit are just a few possible options you can consider. It’s also a good way to help you become a faster and stronger runner.  

-Volunteer.  Whether it’s an injury, budget constraints or just looking for something to do volunteering for a race can be a very rewarding experience.

-Give.  There’s big money in road racing and there are plenty of companies out there just looking to make a buck.  I feel it’s important you pick races that are looking to give back.  Not only should find races who have partnered with charities.  You should also find out how much of their profits will be donated.

Whatever your plans for 2015 here’s hoping you have many great experiences and successes.  And if things don’t go exactly as planned just keep in mind this is a journey, not a destination.  Enjoy the ride!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Why Belong to a Run Club

Frequently, the topic of belonging to run club or what it means to belong a run club seems to come up.  I'd like to offer you some insight as to some of the reasons people belong to run clubs and why you too should belong to a club. 

There are the obvious reasons:
-Learn to be a Runner
-Learn to be a Better Runner
-General Support or Support to Accomplish a Goal
(and probably more that I'm forgetting)

But then there is another reason that people seem to forget....Compliments.  

The only thing that may even come close to achieving your goal is the positive reinforcement or feedback you receive from others in your group.  Some seek this through posting about their weight loss, a personal best in a recent race, running their longest distance ever or maybe just a simple picture as a way to show off the results of their commitment and hard work.   

That's not to suggest that you have to run as fast as Usain Bolt or be as thin as the high paid Hollywood fashion models in order to share.  Each of us are on our own journey.  Each of us have different experiences that have brought us to this moment and, each of us should be able to share our successes with fellow club members without fear of ridicule or judgement from our fellow members.

There are many things that a club can offer you but there are also many things that you can offer to fellow club members.  Sometimes we think less about that latter and  more about the former...I think it's time we change that.  Your belonging to a run club is not only for you, it also thrusts you into a roll of being the support for other members in your group.  And EVERY runner regardless of their current ability seeks that support and positive reinforcement...that's why they are in the same club you are in!  

So the next time the person fatter than you, skinnier than you, slower than you or faster than you tells you about their success or shares a picture with you that is an obvious attempt to show you the results of their hard work....stop for a minute, take it in, put yourself in their shoes and say something nice.  Pay them a compliment, offer them words of encouragement or just say wow!  Nice job!   We all want to feel good about ourselves and you have a responsibility as a fellow member of your running club to make sure you do your part to help your fellow runners feel good about themselves.

If you're interested in learning more about the RunJunkEes Run Club you can find us here.
We also have a Facebook group that is home to thousands of incredible people from around the world.  If you're looking for something more local check out our local chapters 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Why I Run?

Doesn't it seem like you have to answer this question more than you should? Isn't it strange how it makes so much sense to you and absolutely no sense to so many of your friends and family members? When I was out on the trails last weekend, for my 12 mile run, I started to ponder this topic. On a whim I decided to pull out my phone and capture my thoughts with the intent of writing this post. As the moment unfolded there were a couple funny moments that made this too priceless not to share with you directly. Unfortunately, it's not very easy to share a simple audio clip so this is being shared as a file which you will need to download (I think) here.

I think I should clarify one point in this audio about competition.  I love watching competitive running.  I'm envious of the speed and power I see in competitive runners.  When I went back and listened to this it sounded like I was minimizing those that do run competitively-that was not my intent.  I was speaking to the masses of runners who struggle with calling themselves runners because they feel they are not fast enough.

Here's a couple pictures from the run that morning.  Silver Springs State park in Illinois.