What made me join run verity?
I had seen a post the previous year about RV and I had considered joining, but dismissed it. Then on impulse one evening I commented on the Facebook post about the beginners course and to my horror/delight you still had places. From the offset I had the mindset that was setting me up to fail - it didn't matter if I couldn't make every evening, I might get injured, etc etc.
I hadn't exercised regularly for a few years and was pretty unfit and out of shape.
What difference has joining RV made to my running?
Firstly I've learn how to run - posture, technique, correct warm-up/cool down. This has ensured I've run correctly, which in turn has minimised the changes of injury. I can now comfortably run distances I never dreamed possible.
For me, it's made a huge difference. Physically I'm feeling stronger and firmer and it's the first step to returning to fitness and shedding weight I've piled on.
Mentally is the biggie for me. Socially I have struggled, suffered anxiety and found it so hard to do things, I've developed crippling shyness (all down to the menopause). Anyway, I saw this happening and I decided that whilst it would be an uncomfortable step, it really was one I owed to my "old" self to take. Now I feel brilliant during and after a run and I feel alive again. I feel proud of my achievement and (this is the biggie for me) I walk differently - I hold my held up, shoulders back and I look forward (not down). I haven't changed overnight, but a great start since March.
Also the voice that used to come into my head encouraging me to walk during a run has disappeared - that happened about 3 weeks in.
How has a coached group improved your running?
Being part of the group helps because you realise that not everyone is an elite athlete, we're all different, have our own goals and abilities, but we're all in it together. We can encourage each other and the lopping ensures no-one ever feels embarrassed or left behind. It's also pushed me to improve, keep going when I would've walked and achieve goals (10k) without stopping once.
Mostly I think it's ensured that I've kept running since March, give or take a few blips! It would've been easy to slip through the net and stop.
What would you say to anyone who was thinking of joining RV?
Just do it!!! Take the plunge because you have nothing to lose. Get off the sofa, leave the house and do something for yourself. The benefits far outweigh the fear and you'll be so well supported you can't fail.
I have always envied people who can run, never understanding why my attempts ended either in injury or motivation failure! So when I read about Verity's approach to teaching I was intrigued. Joining this group has become one of the best things I have ever done. In the beginning I could only manage to run a few paces and minutes but with Verity's instruction and the groups encouragement I slowly got stronger and fitter. Five months ago I couldn't run for a bus, now I just run - who needs a bus!
Before joining RunVerity, I always thought I knew how to run, well its just natural isn't it? But with Verity's expert advice and support, my running has improved more in a few weeks than in the previous 30 years! The format is relaxed and friendly, and we can run at our own improving pace, whilst still running together.
I joined RunVerity as I had suffered a recent bereavement and was suffering with anxiety. I had always wanted to run and knew I needed a focus to help with my loss and anxiety. I chose to run through RunVerity rather then do it on my own as I know I needed an organised plan to start me running so I would keep running and I decided on RunVerity as it felt safe and supportive. The difference it has made is the motivation to run twice a week is there as I want to go with the group. It has helped build my confidence with running but also to encourage me to put myself in situations such as going to parkrun on my own which I know does bring on my anxiety, once I have run parkrun on my own I feel amazing. Having the sessions coached makes a difference as Verity supports all the runners but also helps people improve as runners. I have been attending the speed sessions and I can feel and see the improvement going to these sessions have made. I would recommend anyone to go to RunVerity as it is a friendly, supportive group that encourages people to want to be part of a team, in the different races I have taken part since joking RunVerity it is the only running group where everyone waits and cheers the last RunVerity runner over the finish line, also physically help you over the line if you have hurt yourself. I couldn't recommend it more.