Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Getting Started...

Hi Fellow PRCers,

What a great night for a run. I was a little late starting, but got caught up for a good run.

Here goes my first post. Hoping I can provide some amusement or insight, I definitely don’t have hardcore training advice (just walk… but faster) or nutritional advice (liquor before beer you’re in the clear…). I also apologize if these aren’t really short, anyone who knows me when I’m not struggling to breathe on a run, knows I’m long winded.

I figured I’d start off with my own personal intro to running, seems relevant to the LTR group. I’m new to Paradise Running Club myself. I only started with the group in early January, and I have to say, so far it’s been fantastic. Prior to that I ran with New World Running Club (Keith and Janet are amazing), the Running Room (occasionally), and with my initial work group of runners at the Department of Natural Resources.

I always enjoyed being active. However, I would describe my capability level as full of heart not talent (like my writing, I’m an accountant not a teacher). When I started running in April 2011, I was a little over a year post-op from ACL (knee ligament) reconstruction. I had ballooned in weight since the initial injury, finding myself at around 280 lbs and wanted to drop it.

I had tried going to the gym, found I was kind of wandering around from machine to machine aimlessly. I tried the classes there, which I found good, liked the group environment, but struggled to settle into a routine.

In January, I started work with Natural Resources. As spring came along, it was clear that the place had pro running atmosphere. My manager was an avid runner and was after me to try it. I started on my own, heading down to Quidi Vidi Lake (~3.8 KMs). It probably took me near 40 minutes to complete, I ran in little bursts and mostly walked. The second time, co-workers came with me, the heart over talent part of me kicked in (AKA spite/stubbornness) and if they were going to run the whole thing then I had to. So I completed it, it wasn’t pretty, but I huffed and puffed my way around. It felt great (Once I could breath and didn’t feel like I was about to feed the ducks my breakfast).

I was hooked. Instantly. I enjoyed the sense of accomplishment that came with completing a run (can’t say I enjoyed the running part of it). I liked having a group to encourage me when it felt like I couldn’t keep going. Someone to push you out the door into wind and rain. People that you strive you catch up to, but won’t leave you alone on the road.

I just wish I’d known of programs like the LTR when I started. It’s a fantastic way to get into running and an intro to the great community of runners. I wish I’d known to start doing 2 and 1s, escalating slowly, might have been more helpful in my early days then just my mentality of slug my way through it.

I hope you all reach your short term goals then just keep going, become regular member of the group. PRC is such a big group that you can always find a running buddy to fit your pace and your goals. You have already completed the hardest step, getting out the door the first time is much harder than hill repeats on Joshua Street (remind me of that when I’m cursing the hill).


Monday, March 30, 2015

Tely Ten Teaser trivia

This week as we head into April and Easter weekend I thought I'd give you a little history on the Tely Teaser. This annual traditional 'non-event' has actually been around for quite a few years.The NLRunning blog mentions it as early as 2007 http://www.nlrunning.com/2007/04/good-friday-tely-test-run.html
Runners completed the Tely Test Run that year on April 6th. Pictures show plenty of snow still on the ground. Some Nautilus Running Club members took part and according to the article this run was already a tradition. So the Tely Ten Teaser may have started a dozen or more years ago. It now brings out hundreds of runners in the early morning hours of Good Friday. One legend has it that runners got out and completed the course early so they'd beat traffic and get to church on time. A more believable story is that many runners complete the course, then head to The Big R on Harvey Rd. for fish and chips and beer! At 10:30 ... Oh well it is 5 o'clock somewhere!

My own Tely Teaser experience began with an out and back 32k run in 2009. I was training with a group of marathon trainee friends at the time. Even though my marathon that year was the Toronto Waterfront  in September, I joined these crazy guys for a memorable double Tely. As I recall, the trip back to Bannerman Road was quite tiring. Instead of The Big R it may have been a large Tim Horton's coffee for us. Since then I have done the Teaser just about every year, including one in a slushy windy late winter blast two years ago. Thank God for Coffee Matters on Military Rd. that year!

Whatever the weather the Tely Teaser is a fun, memorable run which all local runners should try at least once. As this is my last post for March I'll pass the torch to the next blogger. See you on the road...hopefully on the Tely Ten route on Good Friday.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Spring spring spring

March came in like a lion. She has been pretty wild so far. This week saw cancellations and venue changes to avoid some of mother nature's fury. However , our Learn to Run group has been steadily improving through it all. A beautiful but cold Saturday morning coffee run saw over 20 LTR runners and several PRC volunteers hit the streets in the Coffee Matters neighborhood. The group moved up to 4 and 2 minute run-walks with ease. They are very dedicated bunch with a little spring in their step these days.

Regular group runs are progressing nicely as well. Topsail Pond is once again a busy place after a few sketchy snow days. A 16k and a few shorter group runs were complemented by some late season snow-shoeing this week. Treadmills were called into duty as well. And a couple of days ago we experienced the first day of spring. How is that for a strange week? Hope you enjoyed the Saturday sun!

The Boston Pizza 5k is on the horizon for a number of PRCers. First NLAA road race of the season! We are only a couple of weeks away from the traditional Tely Teaser Good Friday run as well. Things are starting to heat up for the running community! Lets hope the spring weather does the same. Through it all, I hope to see you on the road.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Cool Running

We have run in freezing cold temps all this week. Nonetheless, the PRC gang has put up some impressive runs. The LTR group has been making great strides and seem ready to move up to four and twos. A few more sessions and they'll be there. Some are ready to soar already I hear!
Three hilly runs for the regular group have strengthened quads and achilles. The paces have been improving so much that for many, a 6k pace seems to be a thing of the past. A number of runners have been showing marked improvement over previous years. The steady training should pay big dividends during the approaching racing season,, especially for those targeting a destination 10k, half or full marathon.
The PRC colours were switched to green last night for the annual St. Patrick's Day party. A great time was had by the more than 50 runners and guests. A few gatorades were consumed by this health-conscious group over the course of the evening. A big thank you to organizers and our DD Craig who ensured party-goers arrived home safely.
With another storm approaching, we may have to head indoors for a run or two. After that the arrival of Spring is guaranteed to brighten our spirits!  And as always...we'll see you on the road.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Marching into Spring

Well we have already reached the tenth of the month so I have some catching up to do.
Some PRC members have been enjoying a bit of down time during the past few weeks, spending time at various warm and sunny locations. The rest of us are a bit jealous, especially with the deep freeze temps on the Avalon this past week.
Our Spring Learn to Run training program began Saturday with twenty plus excited runners joining us for their first session of three and twos. They didn't seem to mind the minus 12 temps or minus 20 wind chill thanks to the sunny skies! Warmer days ahead for sure! Congrats to this brave group and welcome to the Paradise gang. Coffee Matters may have to add an extension!
At tonight's LTR, I counted at least thirty new faces among our group leaders and familiar runners. Awesome turnout! With our numbers increasing it is more important than ever to keep safety in mind especially in high traffic areas or on narrow streets. We want to ensure the PRC image remains one of a positive, community minded group of health-conscious individuals.
St. Patrick's weekend is just ahead so get your long run in early if possible so you can enjoy the festivities! May this Irish blessing be with you on the road til next time...
May the Irish hills caress you.
May her lakes and rivers bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you.