I saw a motivational poster that said “The race is not with the person beside you, the race is with the person within you.” I thought it was actually a pretty cool saying. Tweetable at the least. But this is an area I have had some difficulty with. My competitive desire is to be fast, and when I am not, I start looking around. I start comparing myself to others (these “others” are usually always faster runners) and I wonder do I have what it takes to be here today. This type of negative thinking can really set a person back. I mean, why constantly show up and pay money to run if you are not placing? Right?
I started running to try to stay in shape. I had no desire to race at all, I just wanted to run. A friend of mine talked my wife and I into running a 5K. A 10K popped up on the radar. I decided I could try it out. Still no desire to race I signed up for a 25K, then a half marathon. Within a year of my first 5K I was hooked. Although hooked, I didn’t really want to race any long distances. All the while I kept getting frustrated at my lack of speed and my low endurance level. I want to be fast so I have to compare myself with all the fast dudes!!! Sounds logical?
After constantly comparing myself to others around me and always coming out less than average, I decided to take another approach. Some people may say it’s the easy way out or the “feel good about you” approach, but what if I evaluated myself as me and stopped trying to be someone else? I have all my old log books with miles and times in them. This might even justify to my wife why I keep them around!
Thumbing through the old logs jogged some memories for me. The first time I ran 13 miles on a training run I ran out of water and lost a toe nail. My first time on the trails a 12 mile trek through old abandoned forest roads where I tripped the dude that invited me. My first 20 mile run in which I was in no way prepared for so many walk breaks ensued.
Digging through theses records uncovered a few more things than old memories. It uncovered MY progression as a runner over the past 3 ½ years. I was able to see how much I have grown as runner. As the calendar progressed with each month, I saw a drop in time on my runs. My 5K pace was faster each race. My first ever 5K time was 23:12. My most recent timed 5k, 20:36. My training runs were faster than previous ones. My first 13.1 mile run I had a time of 2:12. My fastest 13.1 run; 1:38. My weekly mileage began to pick up, almost doubling what the previous months had been. January 2010, 52 miles. January 2011, 73 miles. January 2012, 181 miles. My endurance level allowed me to run continually without frequent walk breaks. December 2010 first 20 mile run, struggle just to finish. December 2011, back to back 20 mile runs on New Years Eve and New Years Day.
It finally hit me that I have to compare myself to me. Do I want to run fast? YES!!! But if I focus all my thoughts on being as fast as some other dude, I lose sight of how fast I really am. The only way to measure this is by comparing myself to me.
When all the training group shows up, I am still the slowest guy in the group. When we talk weekly mileage, I am still the low man on the totem pole. But you compare “me now” to “me then,” even the fast dudes are amazed.
Running on trails was an amazing workout. My clothes were soaked with sweat. I seriously think I could have wrung them out. My sports bra was so soaked when you looked at my jacket the two sweat circles made it look like I was lactating! I couldn't believe nobody told me how big of an IDIOT I looked. I am going to start adding trails into my running schedule way more often. Here is a group shot of all of the awesome IRC members who showed up to run the trails.
David is planning an IRC Skunk Run March 17. It is going to be a ton of fun! Details haven't all been worked out yet, but it sounds like we are going to start around 8a.m and you just log as many miles as you can until around 2p.m.. I plan to run a few, eat a hot dog and go out and run a few more, eat a S'more, run a few more should be a ton of fun. I think there will be awards given. I'm betting I could win The Most Blood Shed. I hope a lot of IRC members get to show up. I love meeting everyone. IRC members are the best so funny and supportive. I guess I better run some more trails before then and work on picking up my feet. Hope to see everyone there!
I purchased the 1BandID last September and LOVE it. At first, I thought it would bother my wrist on a long run. This fear was 100% eliminated after running a 50 miler two weeks later. This race was my reason for the purchase. Fifty miles along old Route 66 was just begging to get hit by a car. Or truck. Or motorcycle....
Didn't even notice the ID for the first 35 miles. This is when the miles started getting tough and my legs were hurting. Feeling like an Idiot for running a road 50 Mile Race in 85 degree weather with zero support on the course, I started checking my Garmin every 10 seconds hoping it was going to read 49 miles but it was seemingly stuck in slow motion. "WOOOOO!!!!x2....life is good" & "ti no trid emos bur" were staring me in the face from the 1BandID. This was a gentle reminder for me to get back in the race.
I came in 2nd place, PR'd, set a state record for my age group and didn't become roadkill. Is it because I had the 1BandID on? Does it hold mystical and magical powers? I like to think it does......
1BandID andIRC have teamed up to give the members a discount on their very own 1BandID. Go to www.1BandID.com, customize your 1BandID and enter the code: IRC15 at checkout to save 15%. For every IRC purchase, $1 will be donated to a charity of the group's choosing. If you want the 1BandID tag to be branded with Idiots Running Club, please indicate it in the special instructions field below where you enter the coupon code. Please note, if you want the tag branded, only use 5 lines for your information; the 6th will be used for the club name.
One of my most memorable "Idiot Moments" came during a 22-mile training run. The date was April 19th, 2010. This was my last 20-miler before my first marathon (less than 4 weeks away). It was an unseasonably warm 78 degrees that day. Yes, you know where this is going. I was carrying a 20 oz. bottle of water and some gels. I was running on a paved bike & running trail, doing an out-and-back. I knew it would be hot, so I started drinking early and often.
At about the 4.5 mile mark, there was a water fountain. My bottle was half empty (half full?), but there were some cyclists refilling their water bottles. I could stop and wait to refill my bottle, or I could keep on keeping on…with no more water opportunities until I hit this same water stop on the way back (17.5 miles into the run). Of course I stopped, right? I mean, I'm not an IDIOT, am I?
Why, yes! Yes I am!
My impatience drove me on and, at about 9 miles, I knew that the vultures circling overhead were licking their beaks. The pace slowed, and the walk breaks started at about 13 miles. Many of the trees that lined the trail started looking like Disney characters. People that were cycling/running/walking toward me were paid assassins, waiting for me to divert my eyes so they could quickly knee-cap and disembowel me. The circling vultures were joined by flying gargoyles and, oddly enough, winged versions of Pat Sajak and Justin Beiber (my nightmare had turned into a pop-culture version of Dante's Inferno).
When I finally reached the aforementioned water stop, now at mile 17.5, it was too late. My tongue had swelled to the size of a grapefruit, and my internal organs had sucked so much water from my brain that the x-ray of Homer Simpson's tiny brain would have put me to shame.
I managed to run/walk/limp the final 4.5 miles in a sweaty fog, somehow finding my truck and, even more unexplainable, remembering how to actually drive it. A cold bottle of chocolate milk awaited me, which was inhaled like a white line at a Lindsey Lohan "Welcome Home" party. Except my nostrils weren't involved. Much.
Once home, I sprawled my salty body across the floor while my wife heated up the only thing that sounded good to me at the time — a bowl of common sense, er, tomato soup.
I obviously lived to run another day. With more water.
So yes, I've earned my Idiot Wings, which I wear proudly on my smelly running shorts.
Until this Thanksgiving, I had never had a sports injury - mostly because I never did anything where there was even a remote chance of getting one. I was a chubby, nerdy girl with my nose stuck in a book - not the kind of girl who ran or got sweaty.
At almost 50, after decades of wishing I was the kind of girl who ran and got sweaty, I finally figured out that I have two legs that work. My heart is beating and I can breathe. There's no reason that I can't run and get sweaty. So I went out and ran.
It was very hard getting started, but after about five months, right around Thanksgiving, it started getting easier. I was really enjoying my runs, kicking through the fallen leaves, breathing the crisp fall air. I was feeling confident. I was slooooow, but feeling like a "real" runner.
I spent a lot of time on the Daily Mile website, comparing myself to runners who were running 5K's in the teens. My 5K PR is a blazing 34:50. No, I'm not kidding. Yes, I did walk a little bit. Anyway, I kept wondering what it would feel like to run that fast. It must feel like flying, I would think.
My husband Tim, daughter Jenny and I woke up early Thanksgiving morning and ran our longest run so far - 7.5 miles. I was so proud - and tired. That same morning our long-time friend Charley Hogue posted a 18:21 5K time at the Springfield Turkey Trot. That's close to a 5:50 pace. Wow. After a bountiful Thanksgiving meal, my daughter Jessica and I were talking about how unbelievably fast that is.
"I wonder if I could run that fast for even a few seconds," I said. "I could try it on the treadmill, just to see."
"Your treadmill doesn't even go that fast, Mom," Jessica said. "Besides, I'm not sure that's such a great idea."
"You're right - the fastest it goes is a 6-minute mile. I wonder what that would feel like," I said.
So, I went downstairs, cranked that puppy up from my normal 12-minute mile to a 6. For the first five seconds, it was great. I did feel like I was flying. Then, I realized that I wasn't running fast enough to keep up - I was churning my chubby legs as fast as they would go, but I was getting farther and farther away from the controls that I becoming more and more desperate to reach. With the last bit of strength I had left, I got close enough to grab the kill switch. As I grabbed it, I felt a weird feeling, like a rubber band broke high up in the front of my thigh. It didn't hurt at the time, and I ran the next two days. But by Monday morning, I was hobbling around like someone with a compound fracture.
And, that's when the bad voices started. "What are you thinking? You're 50 years old! You have no business running. Who on earth do you think you are, flaunting yourself around in that IRC shirt like you know what you're doing. People are probably laughing at you."
I also had a stern lecture from a woman about how dumb it is to run, especially for older women. "It's hard on your joints; your knees and hips can't take that kind of pounding. See, you've already hurt yourself. You need to be on a consistent walking program. Don't you know that running is extremely hard on a woman's internal organs? Older women should never run. Never."
I will also let all of you in on a little secret - after David dropped off our IRC shirts and I pulled it on for the first time - I felt a little bit like an impostor. Don't IRC members run 100 miles in under 24 hours and sub-three marathons? They never walk in any races and they all have less than 6 percent body fat and are under 40 years old. "What are you thinking?" said the nasty little voice. "You're going to look like an idiot."
Since my mishap with the treadmill, I've had some time to think about all this. It has finally hit me. Yes. It's true. I'm an Idiot. Never been prouder of myself in my whole freaking life.
Adventures and Races Submitted by Idiots