Team Challenge 2010 Napa Group Run #9

Team Challenge
We have 25 people on our team who have recommitted! This means that both coaches, Jimmy and I, get to go to Napa this July. Woo hoo!

This weekend’s group run was a step back week to just 5 miles. We had a very small group show up for practice though, only 7 participants. We had as many coaches, mentors and staff there as we did participants. Kind of funny. But we had a few people who were doing a local 5K, some sicknesses and some family emergencies, so most (if not all) of the absences were excusable.

Team Challenge group

Our run today was from a local park and consisted of a route on city streets. I’m very conflicted on routes like this, from both a runner and a coach perspective.

Runner Perspective:
Pro – Cover all new ground so the whole run is different.
Con – This means turns and roads to remember, which can be a pain if you’re unfamiliar with the area.
Con – Fewer bathrooms along the course.

Coach Perspective:
Pro – It’s a nice area and I don’t have to deliver the news that they have to do X many laps around the same place.
Con – It’s easier to lose runners.
Pro/Con – More area to cover to run/walk with all of the different groups.

I put that last one as a pro AND a con because I really like being able to get in additional mileage while getting time to visit with everyone. But it does feel a little hard when you’re trying to make sure the frontrunners are turning at the right spots and watching to see that the back-of-the-packers are following the correct route.

We also had a fair amount of grumps on this run. I had a few different responses from people along the lines of “You’re passing me again?!” and “Oh no, now that you’re by me that means I have to be able to talk.” But then, if they’ve been pushing so hard that it’s way too hard to talk, having me show up alongside of them is a good reminder to back off. They need to be able to keep a conversation without gasping for air during the long runs!

After the run, the team got cleaned up and gathered at one of the mentors house for a team BBQ. We played some games and ate good food. It was kind of fun to see everybody not geared up for running and to meet some of their families. We’ve really got a nice group of people and I’m having a blast with this gig.

So much fun… that I’m going to come back as the coach for another season. I’ll be coaching Team Vegas to run the Rock ‘n’ Roll Las Vegas Half Marathon in December. Woo hoo!

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. It’s great that you’ll be back coaching again!
    Sounds like a lot of fun to have the BBQ – and see some of the grumps when they aren’t so grumpy. 🙂

  2. I wanna go to Napa!!!!!! I am really excited for you Jill, sounds like you are doing some really awesome things!

  3. I’ll bet that some runners are like teenagers when they run (whine about everything!). I’d also bet that you are a great coach and handle it all with aplomb (yes, I would use that as a scrabble word!)

  4. Wow, you are really enjoying this coaching gig, aren’t you?! I’m very glad to hear it – it sounds like you are a good one. I would have smacked the grumps silly. (Sorry, but I probably would have!) And I think Alice is right – some folks will just complain about everything.

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