Well done for an absolutely amazing job this weekend – each and every one of you made all of us coaches really proud. This was not an easy race – it was sunny, and so warm and it was very hilly (far more than we expected – the race website smoothed out the hill profile so that it didn’t look as bad as it actually was). I want to share with you what Sunny Brenneman, one of our experienced runners told me after I came through the finish line – she said that what got her through the race was the thought of you beginners tackling this course. She has been running marathons, and half marathons for countless years, and told me said this was the slowest half she has ever run. That should give you some kind of idea of how hard it was. In spite of that, every one of you finished, most of you ran alone, some with injuries, and yet you ploughed through. Thank you for making our job so rewarding. We have really enjoyed getting to know you over the past few months, and hope you come out and run with us (I promise you we will take care of you those first few times, until you realise that you run as well as or better than those in the MWF groups!
From now until the summer, the groups may often mix and run together – the runs will be fun, laid back and non competitive, especially as we do not have anyone training for the marathon this year. You could run together on Tuesday/Thursdays for a bit if you prefer, and perhaps join the MWF groups later on, or start right away (there is a short 4 mile run tomorrow and a 6 mile run on Friday before the holiday). Just a word of advice from last year’s beginner group – don’t leave it too long before you join the MWF groups. It would be ideal if you made the transition right after this upcoming break. The ex beginners said that it was very intimidating to join in September, and they would have been much better off joining right after the race.
If you need to know where you would fit in best, please don’t hesitate to ask. Bear in mind that Bonnie, Betsy and I will be running in the groups that most of you will be joining, and we will happily help you adjust. Something else to think about is what is your next goal – do you want to maintain fitness, go for a faster half marathon time, shoot for a full marathon, try some shorter races or retire from running. I sincerely hope you don’t choose this last option – you have come too far and worked too hard! To maintain your fitness, you should continue to run 3 times a week – two 45-60 minute runs, and one slightly shorter one. If you want to get faster, you should make your shorter run a tempo one, where you would start off with a warm up jog for 5 minutes, pick up your pace for 20 – 25 minutes, then go back down to a comfortable pace for the last 5 minutes. During the ‘tempo’ phase, you should not be able to carry a conversation – maybe yes/no answers, but nothing much more. I know a few of you have signed up for some shorter races, which is really a great way to ensure you keep running. I will be signing up for the Nike 10k that Tammie told us about, and may do some of the Regents Park runs on Saturdays too.
Finally, thank you all so much for the Cowshed gift card, what an absolute treat! I am looking forward to getting my beauty fix!
I hope to see you out there running really soon,
What a race!
Beginner Note 1 April 2014
Tuesday, April 1, 2014