Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Over-Excited: Too Fast, Too Soon

I think I need to run alone for a while.

Wait, what? I can’t believe I just wrote that. I love running with other people! It's not about competition, it's about having company.

But the “problem” is that I get way too excited when I run with friends. As you may know, I’ve been staging my comeback. And so far I’ve been really good about following my own advice. For 3 weeks I only ran 20 minutes every other day and did excessive amounts of physical therapy (PT). But now I’ve gotten to the point where I think I can start running more. And maybe more often. (YAY!)

On Saturday I ran 50 minutes with my new roommates. And it felt great! (YAY!)

Then on Monday morning I ran 30 minutes at a pretty fast pace with a new running friend. (YAY!)  It felt hard, but in a good way. All I could think of as I walked to work was Wow, I feel like a real person again! And that is glorious.

Last night I went to practice, just to run some laps while my teammates worked out. One of my friends was running mileage as well, so we left the track for the bike path.

I’m sorry, I have to go slow today, I cautioned her.

Yep, this is perfect, I’m fine with going slow, she agreed.

But then we started running…and talking…and running…and talking…and Chatty Cathy that I am, before I knew it my legs were running just as fast as my mouth. Over excited. I need to calm down and run slower! 

I stopped at 38 minutes, while she continued on. Phew! Either we were running fast or I’m just extraordinarily out of shape! Or both.

So next time I will make a conscious effort to run at an easy pace. There’s no rush. I can run longer if I run slower. Running fast could re-injure me. These are the things I tell myself. 

Does anyone else have this problem?


  1. Definitely!
    I have strained one or other of my calf muscles 7 times in the last 16 months. Every time I thought I was taking it slow - low pace, short distance, plenty of stretching before and after, easy ground ( I usually run on off road paths that can be a little rough). But looking at my monitor and pace I obviously wasn't - too fast, too long too soon.
    Right now I've been back for 6 weeks - also sticking to the alternate day - short distance and low pace idea. Managed 6k today with no problems so touch wood I'm finally over it.
    Not that I really run at your pace! More of a sedate shuffle.


  2. running slow (read: even slower than my usual pace) takes discipline. No matter how many times I tell myself that I'm "just going to go out and take it easy" - I always end up pushing harder than I meant to.

    The only way I've found to run slow (against the wishes of your body) is to run with someone who really is slow...not just a fast person who also promises to try and run slow - that never seems to work - you really need to convince a slow person to run with you.

    I actually served that role a few years ago for a friend of mine. He usually runs his marathons in the ~ 2:50 range, whereas I (*cough, cough*) run WAY slower. Anyway, he wanted an "easy 15" and I was able and willing to oblige him. I kept him talking (I needed all of my oxygen for running...) and he was happy that we maintained a turtle-like pace.

  3. We just had too many exciting things to discuss! No restraining the enthusiasm. :)

  4. If you put any of the treats shown on your sidebar at the finish line, even I would risk injury and try to keep up with Kate on her "slow" run! ;) Stay healthy now that you are back!

  5. Kate you know I have NO restraint! That's why we run well together! :)

    IanJ - "sedate shuffle" = love it!

    And Lee, I totally agree, but I'm afraid of being the Step Ahead Susan that everyone hates! My slower friends may not want to be my friends anymore, and that would just be a bummer! So I'll just have to get my convincing-face on...

  6. OMG Dash, I want to bring cupcakes to the next workout, but I think I might be publicly shunned (while everyone eats the cupcakes in private!).

  7. No way would you be shunned! We were all buying Amy's banana bread for the post workout! Of course, that's the morning crew! ;)