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North Brooklyn Runner’s Club

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As I sit here on my couch I am seeing the sunlight stream into my living room.  I am so happy that spring has sprung but I am also feeling something sinister' something dark' something that drove me to consume half a container of frosting.  It is the dread that comes with knowing I need to get off my ass to exercise.  I have written in the past of my amazing athletic feats with Team in Training.  I completed a marathon and a triathlon with them.  The problem is that is the ONLY way that I exercise.  I need a group.  I need someone waiting for me.  I need a reason.

Logically, I know that I feel better when I work out.  I attempt to '˜sense memory’ what it feels like to complete a workout.  I constantly try to remember that feeling for the next time I have an attack of lazy.  Regardless of my efforts, when the time rolls around to get out there, an overwhelming fatigue takes over.  I begin to yawn, to get hungry and to kill time by watching ridiculous reality TV like the show, Ruby.

Note: One would think that watching a show about a morbidly obese woman losing 400 pounds would help me exercise.  Instead I watch in awe of her efforts, proud but yet, still spooning globs of frosting down my gullet.  Strange.

My procrastination techniques over time become more creative and varied.  I cleaned out my closet.  I made a quiche.  I tell myself that I have done enough, that I should probably rest after all that effort.

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Poor Soles

In an effort to jolt myself out of my comatose state I began looking up an old friend in my neighborhood, the North Brooklyn Runner’s Club.  This is not my first time around the track with these peeps.  The one thing I remember is they push you until you can’t go any further…oh yah, and that it is FREE.  Late last summer when I was desperate to continue with the strength, health and endurance I had built while training for the triathlon, I decided to join this group.  My first meet-up with them was one night when I was still in pretty good shape.  That night was a rude awakening.  I did end up running 6 miles.  I did end up meeting a new friend, but it was because we were the slowest people in the whole group.  Needless to say I would never have been able to keep going if it wasn’t for her.  It also opened my eyes to the fact that those people are fast.  Super fast.  Like, have-a-gift-from-God-in-being-able-to-do-5-minute-miles '“ fast.  It is intimidating to say the least.  The next time I went there was no one else who ran slower than 10-minute miles.  The warm-up mile was faster than I usually run.  Without the support of my slower compatriot, I ended up giving up.

The last time I went (They meet all winter'I don’t) the workout involved 3 groups.  I volunteered to be in the '˜slow’ group.  It ended up that the slow group was going to be paced at an eight-minute mile, which for me is the fastest I have ever run.  I didn’t think I could do it.  I ran with an inspirational gentleman who assured me that I could do it and at the end of the mile it turns out we were did it in 7:45.  I was ecstatic, and it affirmed in me that group running is the best way to challenge yourself.

Incidentally, there were three more miles we were supposed to run at that speed.  I happily quit after one.

I haven’t been back with the crew since that day because of winter and because I am scared of the 8 minute miles.

Until now.

I went to the website.  I am ordering a tee shirt.  I am feeling inspired.  I will find the slowest person in the group.  I will join them.  I will not feel bad that I am the slowest person on the planet track.  I will rejoice in my slowitude.

I will be reborn as a North Brooklyn Runner.

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Christine Witmer - Sparing Stringer

Christine Witmer - Sparing Stringer

Christine was born and raised in the land of the Pilgrims, Plymouth, Massachusetts. She turned in her buckled shoes when she moved to NYC to attend NYU. From that esteemed University she received her BFA in theatre as well as a Master's Degree in Performance Studies in 2004.
Now an actor, writer and broke ass day-jobber, Christine juggles her many personas with the elegance of a red panda. specifically the one in the Prospect Park Zoo . . . soooooo cute! She can be found most often in her own habitat on the Northside of Williamsburg, Brooklyn.