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June 09, 2013

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Definitely the faster group. It will be hard at first, and you may have to really focus on your breathing and form to keep up. But you'll adjust! And the only way to become a faster runner is to... run faster. :-) Hope it goes well!

It's smart for you to try the new level - how else will/would you know if it's right for you? It will probably be a great tool for individual progress. A few years back when I took a lot of dance classes, I always liked to work above my level. It pushed me mentally and physically.

I would be nervous and talking myself out of the same doubts as you, and I would definitely do it. I'm sure you will get something bloggable out of it!

Hmmm. I regularly mountain bike with people who are more skilled than me and sometimes I get tired of being the slowest and most-walking-over-obstacles rider. I sometimes find myself thinking "I wish there were group SPSS challenges or Excel graphing so I could be among the fastest instead of always being the slowest." So I can understand your hesitation at joining the faster group. But I've found that runners and mountain bikers are usually kind and are glad to welcome people to their tribes, and I've never seen either group laugh at the slower people. I think I would give the faster group a try, and if it after 3 or 4 weeks it wasn't working out, go back to the slower group. I assume it's not a case where you have to decide once and stick with it throughout the summer.

"Oh I am definitely the stick with something easier person," I thought very quickly and knew I would type as this window opened from the RSS feed.

So, er, I guess this is my confession of the day? That I am the person who deeply fears looking foolish (who can,for example, still be fretting about the poor impression she might have made in a freeway-offramp McDonalds almost a year ago now) and who will probably therefore always prefer the less risky route, as much as I disappoint myself -- and not even so much because I didn't achieve whatever the more-risky path would have brought me, but because I know I should be more willing to risk looking foolish.

The worst that would happen would in fact be that they would laugh as you dry-heaved. But even if that happened (and, let's be real, it will NOT), you would be fine. It would probably only haunt you for a little while. And you would have learned a valuable lesson about that faster-running running group (which is to say, that they were impossibly conceited jerks). But they are not jerks, so really the worst that would happen would be that you actually didn't have a running partner in that group and you needed to re-join the other one.

I type this out knowing that, if I'd had the courage to join the first group, I might have felt I'd used all my courage up, and stay there. But I sincerely hope that that's just me. (It looks from the comments like it might be.)

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