august 20, 1998
My first buddy run
We met at Rancho San Antonio for the evening buddy run. There were probably around twenty people. After some light stretching, we set off. SInce I am a slow runner I stayed at the end. I ended up in a group with two women named Eileen and Jen. Eileen was volunteering to run with new runners. She did the last season and ran the marathon in Alaska(?). She stayed with Jen and I and talked us through the rough spots, coaching us through our breathing and showed us how to run up and down hills. The first mile and a half was awful, but we kept a slow steady pace. We got water after about 15 minutes. The trail was a flat run, but really has some hills in it. They were pretty mild compared to some of the trails in Rancho, but felt pretty high to me. The rest of the way down the trail was a little rough and I had to walk the big hill. The fast group passed us going towards the turnaround. After we turned around to head back, we were finally able to keep a steady pace and have a conversation. I was amazed that the way back seemed so easy compared to the run in. By the time we got to the water fountain, I felt terrific. We were the last in, but a few people were right ahead of us so we weren't really too slow. I think we ran about 5 1/2 miles.
Eileen was a great help and good confidence builder. If I can remember her advice and keep my breathing in check and keep the pace slow, I can do this.