Your Pace Or Mine?

Coaches Tip Tuesday! 
Your Pace Or Mine? (You’ll Be Fine.)
  So, I am among a lot of runners. Sometimes they are running, and sometimes there are milling about waiting for their running buddy to come. I am also a skilled eavesdropper and love listening to a couple of running buddies meeting up. The conversation usually goes down like this:  “UG! I haven’t run in a week. I need to go slow today.” “I am very tired,  I am not sure I’ll be able to keep up with you today. ” “My knee is kinda weirding out, so, I might not be able to go the regular pace.” I also hear this when I meet people on a daily basis. It’s like they have a list of go-to holdbacks to deal out to make sure I won’t break them. Just for the record, I have never actually broken a runner. I haven’t even tried. I use to take this conversation to heart and really slow down, or constantly check on them, “is this ok? are you ok?” but know I kind of listen, acknowledge, and then properly forget. I know that it will be fine, and if we are talking, laughing, and are next to me that they are fine. So, I thought it would be a good reminder of what pace looks like for a new runner, or even one who has been around the block. 
First: The first mile, just go extra slow. Your body is trying to wake and figure out what it’s doing. Keep your pace a little slower, or maybe walk for a bit before starting. 
Second: Here is the pace rule of thumb. If you can’t talk, you are going too fast for a “regular run”. If you are sprinting, then no, of course, you can’t talk. But if you are just going for a run with a buddy, then you should be able to talk. Not sing, then you are going TOO slow and are probably annoying people, but a definite 1 sentence at a time, in between breathing, is a good pace. 
Third: Make sure your head isn’t setting the pace. Your brain can sometimes hijack your body and your heart rate and will go into panic mode out of fear. (like the fear of not being able to keep up, feel like you’re being chased, or concern that you won’t be able to make it the whole way. ) A good way to to get your heart and lungs back in charge is to suck a big ‘ol breath in your nose, shake out your arms, and tell your head, that it ‘will be fine’. And you will also be fine. The joke is that it’s just running, one foot in front of the other over a period of time. That’s it. You can do this.  You will be fine!
Coach Beth