March 19th, 2020
I have been having a blast running every week in training for my races and longer distance runs. Sadly, over the span of two days I received an email cancelling the Sun Run, the BMO, the Shamrock Half (which was in two days at the time), and from Paul cancelling the running clinic, due to COVID-19.
I have been continuing to run on my own 2-3 times each week with the distances getting longer and longer. I am running 16-20km on Sundays and shorter distances throughout the week. As the clinic is no longer meeting in our large groups, I have now been forced to do all these runs on my own, of which I have found it much harder to motivate myself.
Even with the race cancelled I still was able to pick up my Shamrock Run Half Marathon medal!
Since my last post, I have joined the Gleneagle track team and have been having a blast. On Tuesday’s afterschool at track practice I have been working with the 800m+ distance coach and have begun to develop a mentoring relationship with him that I hope I will have the chance to continue working on once the COVID-19 shutdown ends.
Even with all my races cancelled, I still hope to run my half marathon and, now having much more time to train, possibly a marathon too. I have already planned out a route near Pitt Lake for my half and I plan to run it within the next two weeks!
The Half Marathon Route I have planned out
My mentorship with Paul has been going smoothly. Last Thursday, I met up with him to discuss race preparation. I came prepared with a list of questions and ran down the list with Paul. I learned about the importance of maintaining the same diet in the days before and the same running schedule although with the intensity toned down. For the day before, Paul recommended I run through my race day schedule, meaning a 6:20am wakeup, 7:00am breakfast, and a 20 minute jog instead of a race. I hope to employ this same race strategy for my own half marathon.
Paul and I are also becoming closer with each meeting. Last Thursday, with the tension of COVID-19 looming over upcoming races, we were able to speak more openly than usual and it is nice that we are finally beginning to open up to each other on that level.
Reflection Questions for post #4 (week seven) :
- What has been my most difficult mentoring challenge so far? Why?
As I mentioned in my last post, the most difficult challenge I have been facing in this mentorship has been finding time and space at which Paul and I are able to communicate fully and openly. As Paul is extremely busy outside of owning and working at the Runners Den, our meetings have all been within the store. This has come with the drawback of our meetings occasionally being interrupted with customers coming in and chatting with Paul. As Paul is volunteering his time to mentor me, I have come to accept that although it is annoying, being interrupted is simply something I have to live with in working with Paul.
- What is working well? Why?
At our last meeting especially, Paul and I were engaged in a deep conversation about preparing for races and long runs. We talked a lot about his experiences and I learned a lot of good tips. For this meeting, I came prepared with a list of questions which worked well for keeping the conversation going. I asked questions about water, food and warm ups before running races. I believe this worked well as both Paul and I had a specific idea of what we were hoping to get out of the interaction.
- What could be working better? How can you make sure this happens?
Once COVID-19 dies down, I hope to push hard for a chance to run with Paul 1 on 1. Although I am learning a lot from speaking to Paul in the shop, the entire experience could be improved by just running with Paul outdoors. I will work hard towards this opportunity by organizing a time with Paul that is stress-free and open for the both of us.v