When I trained for the San Antonio Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon with Team in Training, I posted a recap of our group runs every Saturday, so I will do that for this group. The differences in training will be huge though, because this time I am the coach as opposed to the nervous runner worried about covering the distance while raising money for a cause.
Today our group met at 7:00 AM at the local Fleet Feet store. We had a 15-minute clinic from the store owner on the importance of having proper gear, from shoes to socks to apparel. Many of the team members were there in cotton sweats and fashion athletic shoes, so I’m glad they got a presentation on the importance of having the proper equipment. Hopefully they follow through and get the gear they need.
After that we set out on the group run/walk for the day… 2 whole miles! It was about 50 degrees out but the winds were blowing pretty fierce, so it felt chillier than that. Some of the people were very quick and covered the distance in good time. I played the role of sweeper, running back and forth between the groups of walkers. A lot of our walkers are going to need to pick up the pace to do the race in the time limit, but I am confident they will be able to do it safely as long as they pay attention to Jimmy and me. Due to my role at the back of the pack I ended up covering about 2.5 miles.
Post-training the group had a little birthday party for our Team’s honored hero, a local girl who has struggled with Crohn’s disease her whole life. Today was her 14th birthday, a very fitting and appropriate way to start our training season. The group ate bagels and sat down for a fundraising clinic to get tips and tricks on meeting their goals.
From a coaching perspective I am a little intimidated about learning everyone’s names… I would like to know everyone, but there are a lot of people! Granted, we didn’t have all 60 show up this week (I hope they got their mileage in!) but there were at least 30 people there. I’m excited to share information with them and help them avoid making mistakes that I’ve done. But I realize there is a certain level of mistake-making that will occur regardless of how tough/nice we are as coaches. The urge to go out too fast, too soon hits all of us at times, even those of us who have done it in the past, experienced the pain and know better. Sometimes you just get excited to MOVE!
All in all, it was a good start to training; I look forward to getting to know my team better and helping them (the majority of them are complete novices to racing) cross the finish line this summer!