Learn to Run Updates 2018


Summer is Over! Way to Go, Learn to Run Longer Group!

Yikes – we skipped Fall and jumped directly into Winter !! 11 degrees – whhhaaaatttt??!!

So the last run of summer this Wednesday. Oh well – we had a good run (no pun intended – or maybe J) ….

Again this week we have a very modifiable route to accommodate a variety of distances. Can be a simple out and back for 4-5 KM range, an earlier turnout for 7 KM (take Memorial back to the waterfront, then left back to start/end point) or the full meal deal 8.6 KM – an easy bump up from last week’s 8 KM, so moving closer to that 10 KM mark!! A new, different route for a Wednesday run!

We will meet at the usual time of 6:00 PM (sunset is 7:19 so we’re OK visibility-wise, but bright colours are always wise!) but we have a different meeting point this week QB waterfront – extreme west end of beach-front parking lot just beyond the BEACH HUT – park on the far side of the small grassed and treed area making a divide in the parking lot.

Here’s the link to the map – https://friendfit.com/route/105156?from=fitblog

Even though it is much cooler than in the past many weeks, please do carry at least a small water bottle as our elapsed time will be around an hour!

Hope to see a good turnout !! Gotta Run,

Doug Brown


Saturday, May 13th:

Hi All:

Well, for many of you, tomorrow is the nest step in your running journey. Many of you, just a few weeks ago, were wondering if you would ever, ever be able to run for 7 minutes straight – argh!!! And now look at how far you’ve come!

For some, the Mother’s Day 5K run is their first ever “official” running race. For others it represents a return to race participation after an absence precipitated perhaps by injury, illness, or “life” in general. Regardless it is important to not consider it as “the big day” or as a singular event for you would not be participating (nor would any of the hundreds of other runners/walkers) without the preparatory journey you’ve been on since mid- February!

All too often many runners/walkers put too much emphasis on a single race and not on the overall journey. Sure, experienced participants may be hoping to have a new PB (personal best time) and may be disappointed if that shouldn’t be the outcome. But it gives no credit to the months/hours/kilometers of training; the juggling of life’s priorities to squeeze in yet another training run; the challenge of illness and injury and getting back on track from either; the late or abandoned times with family and friends – all those sacrifices that were made along the journey. Without those, runners/walker wouldn’t be lined up at the starting line on Sunday morning.

So embrace what you’ve accomplished, from where you’ve travelled, and allow yourself to feel good about your participation tomorrow no matter what your pace/time.

And do not be intimidated by the hundreds of other runners. Sure some will be quicker, some will have superb form, and some will just seem to be having a very easy time of it while you may be struggling with each step!

But – and this I am extremely confident in stating – not one of the other runners will look down on you, criticize your pace/form/running “fashion”. In fact they will to a person encourage their fellow participants, some even waiting at the finish line to cheer others home! And especially warm encouragement and congratulations is amply given to those who may have to “walk it home” for they stuck it out all the way to the finish, rather than taking the easy out and quitting the race.

So while you’re at the start line Sunday morning, look around you at the hundreds of other participants and realize that they – just like you-  are on a journey! You know what they may have had to endure, and they similarly relate to your efforts. You are all kindred spirits – enjoy the next step of your mutual running journey!!

Gotta Run


Monday, May 8th:

Hi All:

Well, this is it – the 13th session! Where did the time go? Good news – its slightly warmer now than in February, so hope remains! But the really good news is how far you’ve come in your pursuit of running! The big smiles of late really do indicate just how much you have learned about yourself and your running ability.

Do feel good about what accomplished – and that goes for all of you, regardless of where you are in the walk/run equation. Keep at it – you will get stronger, more aerobically efficient and eventually quicker ( first you get strong, then you get fast – a good running rule to follow).

As mentioned in the homework confirmation message, we will be covering the Mother’s Day 5 KM route as our session this week, so it will take a bit more time than our usual Wednesday sessions.

By running/walking the route you’ll have a true sense of what’s involved in the race – that will take away the concerns about course difficulty (only 1 hill) and just what 5 KM feels like. Hopefully those who may still be reluctant to sign-up for the run will find that it’s a great starting point for your new/renewed running adventures!

We’ll give you a few pre-race tips and answer your questions, too. And – for those who may be/are using more frequent walk breaks, that’s OK – don’t stay away – come along as we know you’ll boost your self-confidence by simply getting out there and taking one step at a time!

And – post session – we have a celebration “feed” – we have reserved ( we learned our lesson after no room at the Black Goose J) space at BOSTON PIZZA and ORCA will buy the pizza and 1 drink per person!! So let’s get together and celebrate -you’ve earned it!! And we can talk about the next step – “running longer” starting in 2 weeks!!

So our meeting point this week, still for 6:00 PM, is the parking lot at the PARKSVILLE CURLING CLUB – at the foot of CORFIELD St at the entrance to the Community Park.

And – no excuses J – there’s a low possibility of showers (according to the current forecast) but it will be mild so we can guarantee that no one will either melt from the rain or wash away …. J.

Oh – good idea to hydrate well (water) during the day Wednesday … we won’t be having a water station Wednesday evening, but there will be one race day!

Looking forward to seeing you ALL Wednesday!!

Gotta Run


Thursday, May 4th:

Hi All:

Well it was a small but hardy group that braved the rain last evening – and were all smiles at the end! Well done ladies!! There is a significant difference in running in the rain when its 13 degrees instead of 3 degrees! And – in my experience (jaded, of course) running in the summer (you know, those 6 weeks of warm weather we get annually …. Or used to anyway?) during a light drizzle is quite enjoyable.

So – for those who missed last evening – and as a reminder to those who didn’t – the “homework is : walk 1 ½ minutes / run 13 ½ minutes X 2 repeats followed by a minimum 5 minute cool-down walk and stretches.

Next Wednesday is the “official” last evening of this  Learn to Run session (but, hey – you’re not done – “Run Longer” will follow starting May 24 we’ll take a 1 week break in between)

PLEASE plan for the following at  next Wednesday’s session and clear your calendar accordingly:

  • Location – we will be meeting at Parksville curling rink parking lot (foot of Corfield in Parksville Community Park) and will be running the Mother’s Day 5 K route.
  • Allow extra time as 5 KM will take a bit longer than 30 minutes – it’s not a race Wednesday and we want everyone- whether running with multiple walk breaks or only 1 – to have the opportunity to travel the route in advance and see that it is really quite “doable”. Gets rid of the “I can’t do it” fear …. Yes you can!
  • Post run – we will have a LTR session wrap-up celebration pizza and “refreshments” – courtesy of ORCA. You’ve come a long way – celebrate the accomplishment!

Please register for the 5K (follow the link at orcarunning.ca) and save $10 by registering online by May 11 (otherwise $40 race day morning)

And for those of you who may have encountered some issues ( minor injury, time conflicts, illness, etc) over the last 3 months and perhaps are not feeling that you’ve met your goals – keep going!! Come to the “Run Longer” sessions (no fees – just fun and support!) and continue your running journey! The Run Longer sessions are based on gently increasing the target distance run each week …. And there will always be a shorter route available for those who are in need of a bit more time to get the conditioning/endurance in tune …. Completely natural. And, remember, we all have good days/bad days too.

Making the commitment to join a group of like-minded individuals in the pursuit of a personal goal is a great way to ensure achievement!

Have fun with the ‘homework” this week …. A further message will follow confirming next Wednesday’s session details

Gotta Run,



Wednesday, May 3rd:

Here we go – week 12, another notch in the Learn to Run belt and only ( as of Wednesday) 11 days to the Mother’s Day 5 KM!

We meet this week in Qualicum Beach at the Civic Centre – usual place on the plaza in front of the building entrance for 6 PM.

Another step up in the walk/run transition –BUT – don’t be reluctant to attend if you’re not at the 12/3 split …. As mentioned in the earlier email, we want you to achieve your goals, and will support you in getting there … there are no prizes for first across the line!!

Since you’ve been at this for 12 weeks now, hopefully you’re starting to relate to actually being a runner! Here’s a link to a light-hearted view of what only runners understand –  http://www.active.com/running/articles/28-things-only-runners-understand.  Enjoy!!

And remember to get your registration completed for the 5KM – go to raceroster.com or www.orcarunning.ca and follow the links… J I know – I’m hounding you ….. but you’ll appreciate it later!

Hope to see EVERYONE Wednesday evening!! No excuses!

Gotta Run ( once my physio is complete)


April 28th:

Hi All:

Big congratulations for a great effort/result Wednesday evening – there certainly were a lot of smiling faces!! Doesn’t it feel just so good when what was perceived as difficult –well, almost impossible – becomes a reality?!

And a special note to anyone who may be finding the process difficult – don’t give up on the process and especially don’t give up on yourself! Keep going out there – and have faith that you really can do it, because you can!

Our Wednesday evening participation level has fallen off a bit in the past few weeks – many reasons undoubtedly.

If you’re staying away because you feel that you haven’t kept up and don’t want to be a burden on everyone else, please let go of that notion. We all learn at different rates, we all have varying degrees of life’s pressures with which to contend, and even when we do get onto the running bandwagon , we all have different paces at which we run. So please – if you’re struggling, come out anyway – we are here to support you. Don’t worry about being, slow, last etc – we’ll have someone to keep you company. And if your concern is that there’s only a few weeks remaining, so why bother …well, we will be continuing with a “run longer” program and there is definitely room in those sessions to find your groove! You made a choice at the start of the year to allow yourself to ‘learn to run” – let’s make it a reality!

The “homework” is :

Walk 3 minutes / run 12 minutes X 2 repeats followed by a minimum 5 minute cool down walk plus stretching.

Enjoy your week!