In 2008 I graduated from the University of Virginia and moved to Baltimore. One of my first orders of business was to find some friends to run with. After some extensive googling and blog stalking, I ended up at the blog for Team That’s What She Said. They meet on Monday nights at 6:30 in Federal Hill, Baltimore. I still remember that first night I showed up — I think I barely said more than two sentences to anyone and was just the creepy girl running alongside the 8 minute pace group!
But I did notice that these girls were clearly good friends and had bonded through running and beyond, and I wanted to be a part of it. So I kept going to that run, week after week. I even showed up to the track workout on Tuesdays and attempted that a few times! I can’t put my finger on the moment when it happened, but it did, and eventually I was part of the group. (Actually, it was probably the moment I wow-ed them all with my extensive abbreviation vocabulary and they were all super jeal and obvi wanted to learn some abbrevs.)
When I started thinking about one particular story I could tell about the running group, I wasn’t sure if I should tell about the Hubs of Fury outings (our biking-bar hopping extravaganzas) or Awards night (annual event in December). Or there is always Club Challenge (the yearly 10 mile race that we make into the most competitive event. of. the. year.) or the fact that the group has helped to stimulate the economy by eating their weight in Chipotle burritos after Tuesday Night Track.
But then I realized that it’s not one particular day or story that stands out. Instead, what does stand out is the consistency. The dedication. The devotion to one single thing: running. The fact that if nothing else, we understand that about each other and will be there for each other. Every single week. One single person or event doesn’t make this group so special – rather it’s the cumulative miles, of all of the people who come and go, that makes it special. I admit that this year I have been at this Monday night run less than ever due to my own training schedule, but it’s still nice to know it’s there.
I know you’re wondering by now where the contest part of this post is? Well, allow me to show you the money. And by money, I mean your chance to get a Oiselle Start Line Tee for everyone in your group! Click on that link (note: contest starts at 10am PST 10/12/2011 so the link will be live then!) to the Oiselle blog for more information, but in the meantime here are the details:
Oiselle wants to honor the running groups that keep us all going by meeting them and then randomly drawing one group to win Start Line tees for everyone in the group! To enter, post the following on Oiselle’s Facebook (or if you’re Facebook Free like me just e-mail the info to firstname.lastname@example.org):
1. Running group (name or description)
2. Where are you?
3. Tell us about it! (Do you meet for speed, long run, are you all training for the same race, etc)
4. What’s your favorite post run activity?
5. Anything else you want to share.
I’m looking forward to hearing all about your running groups! Entries can be submitted until Monday. Good luck!