How do you define a runner? It’s a great question that my triathlon coach Rich Caiazza wrote about recently in his post “I Am Not A Runner“. He says with clear vindication in the beginning of the post that he IS a triathlete. And I will add a damn good one. But when he separated the three disciplines, it was tough for him to say he IS a runner, swimmer, cyclist. The post goes through his journey and rationalization and ultimately he discovers there is an asterick at the end of “I Am Not A Runner” . This question also came up the other day when I lead the Lululemon Athletica Walt Whitman run club at Caumsett State Park and we approached a woman who looked like she was going to start her workout. We introduced ourselves and said we were going out for a 3 mile run. She looked at us and said, well I’ll be doing more like a run/walk thing. We said ok let’s go! And we ran at a great comfortable pace the whole time..no stopping or walking, chatting away. This was one definition of running.. or being a runner. The woman we ran with didn’t realize her capability, until she was shown in a quasi sort of way. Our run club is designed just for that.. to get people going, showing them what they are made of and to teach them confidence and skill all in a fun way. Building a community to motivate those to be more and do more and to take advantage of the beautiful scenery we have access to on Long Island. We talked about yoga, we talked about watches, we talked about heart rate, upcoming goals and races. We even came up with mutual people we knew.. because once a gain at the end of the day its a small world and we live on an Island. Perhaps sometimes our tunnel vision doesn’t allow us to see our potential. It is one reason for me why I have a coach. I got stuck on thinking of myself as the 2:10 half marathon girl for years, until we unlocked my potential to see faster times, healthier training and better race results in many distances in running and multisport. So if I can pass on the drive for the reader to try and unlock their potential, my job here was done. Taking the first step is always the hardest. But the only failure is the one you didn’t try. See you Wednesday nights 6:15pm, at Caumsett State Park main parking lot. Show up and say.. I am a runner.