Team Challenge 2010 Napa Group Run #5

Team Challenge
This week our runners got to enjoy a little racing experience! They participated in a local 5K (that was organized by Desert Sky Adventures, so both Jimmy and I had a hand in getting the race off the ground anyway) as a “tune-up” experience. Many of them had never run in a race before so it was completely new. I think it was a good exercise for them to get the experience of running with a larger group of people and finding their pacing spot amongst the crowd.

Before the run we had an injury prevention clinic from Dr. John, a local chiropractor who specializes in athletes and sports injuries. He is certified in Fascial Stretch Therapy, a technique of assisted stretch therapy that helps improve a person’s mobility and flexibility. He had a table at the race set-up where he was demonstrating the process on several of the runners. I imagine he’ll gain a lot of clients because everyone I heard talking about the process was in amazement at how good they felt after. John is also an experienced runner and triathlete, he’ll be running Rio Del Lago 100 later this year (the premiere race for Desert Sky Adventures) and he blogs about his training/racing.

One of our runners has started wearing a knee brace, but after the race Dr. John was checking her out and discovered that she doesn’t actually have knee problems. Turns out her calf is really tight and knotted up, which in turn is causing the hamstrings to pull too much as well. The real problem zones were on either side of her knee. This is a good reminder that just because there is pain in one spot, doesn’t mean that is the root of the problem. Dr. John recommended that she really focus on stretching and use a foam roller or The Stick to work on that area. So it’s also a good reminder about the importance of stretching. (Which reminds me… I uh, didn’t stretch at all after running today!)

Like I said, the team did a 5K. I ran out to the 5K turnaround point with the front of the pack, then I hung out there for a while to see some of my middle-pack runners and make sure they turned around. Then I ran back for a while until I saw the back-of-the-pack groups approaching. I turned around again and went toward the turnaround with them for a while, then I headed back toward the finish line. It became obvious that I wouldn’t catch up to any mid-pack runners, so I turned back one more time to find the last of the Team and head in to the finish line with them. I ended up covering about 5 miles.

After the race I helped clear up all of the race gear and timing equipment. I ran the final results reports so I could post them on the web today too. Multiple trips were made carrying plastic storage bins, folding tables & chairs, timing mats and computers. So in a way, I got in a strength workout too post-run! 😉

Next weekend the Team is doing 6 miles, up from the initially scheduled 5 miles. The reason for this is we had to swap training locations and the spot that is being used next weekend is a 3 mile loop. It’s convenient to do two laps around that to get 6 miles, but if we tried to make it a 5 mile route people would get lost. This is the same place that we lost a runner before, so best make it as simple as we possibly can!

However, I will not be running with my Team next weekend. I will be running the Las Vegas Race for the Cure with my mom. I’ll miss my team, but I’m looking forward to the race too – it’s tradition!

I am coaching a group of runners for the organization Team Challenge. They are fundraising for the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation of America while training to run the Napa to Sonoma half marathon in July.


  1. I LOVE that you started at the front of the pack but waited for the slower runners to come through! One day I’d really love to be one of those group run leaders like you!! (note: during the group runs that I lead, I was always the person who swept the back, and was ALWAYS still s lower than the last runner.) You are so inspiring!! Keep up the amazing pacing work!!

  2. hey! i know johnny! well, you know, i “know” him via the blogosphere 🙂 he’s a crazy endurance guy! i am big on your reminder that pain in one spot doesn’t mean it isn’t really somewhere else.

    you are an awesome coach/team coordinator for “sweeping” and running with everyone!

    • I’ve seen your comments on his blog at times. I didn’t even know he had a blog for a while, I knew him in real life before I’d ever seen his blog. When I saw your comments I was like, “Hey… my friend Lindsay knows my friend John!”

  3. I was reading parts of your post out loud to my husband when we were in the car earlier today – I was like “she ran 5 miles over the course of a 5k race!” My coach from TNT said that she normally ran about 40 miles on the day of a marathon, but it was the same 4 miles back and forth for most of the day! Good for you to be so good about picking up all the runners as you went along. That must have been a kick for your runners who had never run a race before!

    • A few weeks back I did about 5 on a 3 mile run too and the majority of that was over the last .25 mile… over and over and over. It was funny how the Garmin map looked like I had scribbled repeatedly over that spot when I imported it.

  4. Good luck with the race. I have a good friend that is a sales rep for Shire who is coming up from New Orleans to run the race. I’m extremely jealous! Please don’t post any pictures of the great scenery there because it may send me over the edge 🙂

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