Introducing the AthletiKaty Run Crew

It’s no secret that I love to run, and half marathons are my drug of choice. I log the majority of my miles solo, and it admittedly can get lonely out there. Group runs aren’t always the easiest to find and take part in. Not to mention, my average abilities and I find organized group runs to be intimidating.

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Approaching the finish line in San Diego, about to grab that shiny new PR.

Earlier this summer, I was in the wake of my latest big race effort and felt a little aimless. I wanted to feel like I was part of something, but my November race registrations were too far into the future to feel relevant. Filling my time with 5Ks and finding a run group seemed like the right thing to do.

Slow & Steady But Solo

After a few weeks of talking about it, my social anxiety and I sucked it up and went to a Saturday morning run hosted by my local Fleet Feet. (Local = a 20 minute drive away. My town’s got nothing.) My slower pace paired with a long distance ambition isn’t the most common on the social running scene, so I was nervous.

Within the first mile, I found myself on a 7-mile solo run that I’d dragged my arse out of bed at 7:00a on a Saturday for. If I wanted to run alone, I’d have stayed home and at least known where I was going. Instead, I kept having to grab a sweaty strip of paper out of my pocket every half mile or so, hoping I didn’t sweat the ink into unreadable oblivion. I felt lost, both literally and figuratively.

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One of many morning miles in Minneapolis

Those of you who follow my stories on Instagram know that I spend a ton of time on the road. While I often WANT to be part of something, sometimes it’s impossible for me to physically be there. Perfect example: SeaWheeze 2019. I wanted to run in Vancouver so badly, but I had to be in New York for work. I knew this back in January, so I didn’t even enter the lottery. I sadly had to turn down a generous offer from the lululemon Westfarms team to nominate me for an entry. Such was life.

BYO Race Course

But then, in July, lululemon announced an option to run a virtual race. I was still able to feel connected to Seawheeze, and it’s what got me out the door to complete my longest run since June. As some of you recall, August was a rough month for me and my family, and that virtual race kept me from giving up on something I loved and simply burying my head in the sand.

The day I crossed the proverbial finish line and completed StravaWheeze, I decided I wanted to figure out a way to better engage with the people I’ve followed on social media and vice versa, some of whom I’ve been lucky enough to meet through this platform over the last few years. Hell, I wouldn’t have connected with my amazing run coach if it weren’t for this blog.

I can’t be the only one out there who loves to run, but struggles to find compadres to do it with. So I decided that if I couldn’t find a club to be part of without the ability to show up at X place at X time on X day of the week, I may as well create one of my own.

Say hello to the AthletiKaty Run Crew. 👋🏼

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This brainchild of mine is going to live its life on Strava, and I’m incredibly hopeful that you’ll join me.

My goal is to provide a lighthearted, fun, yet informative virtual run club for AthletiKaty readers. Oh, and we’ve got GIFs for the ‘gram. (I’m a nerd, ok?) 🤓🤓🤓

Click the big ol’ graphic above to be taken directly to the club’s page on Strava.

For more info: AthletiKaty Run Crew 101 + FAQ

I really hope you’ll join the club. Whether you run for health, snacks, or race medals… you’re welcome to run with me. I think we can have some fun.

12 comments

  1. I used to run and though I don’t currently, I’d still love to follow your run club posts! 🙂 it sounds so awesome!!

    • Thanks Janessa! Even if you’re not training right now, you know how it can get sometimes…

      I like this ok maybe this run is hard OMG I’m dying WHY do I do this to myself ugh wait there’s free snacks at the finish line ooooh look at my shiny medal LET’S DO IT AGAIN

  2. I feel bad that you ended up alone at a Fleet Feet Run. Our Fleet Feet always has 100+ runners of all speeds. (And Saturday, they had popsicles afterwards!!) If you’re ever in Athens, I could find you a running buddy. That said, I do look for people my speed to run with so I don’t run too fast etc. If you ever give group runs another try, you could ask for someone your speed. And I sometimes prefer to run solo and listen to podcasts etc. But conversation can make the miles go by. Joined your club! Also, I want to run San Diego so bad. It seemed like too much money at the time, but now I regret not signing up.

    • Wow, that’s an insanely awesome turnout! It was maybe 20-30ish people around here, and our FF offers a long and short option. I chatted with a few others who had chosen the longer distance before we started out, but the two girls who swore they were taking it easy and running near my pace did not. Maybe I’m shit at math but 8:30 != 9:45 😆

  3. I know you don’t have kids, but it’s not a requirement to join a Moms Run This Town group. My local chapter and the ones around us are huge and have multiple group runs per day, most of them at your exact pace. It’s completely free and basically a Facebook group to join so you can probably search there.

  4. Gosh, I’m sorry you ended up by yourself that morning. That just sucks. I joined your crew, but be warned – I’m currently sidelined by hip and knee problems so swimming and biking instead. I hope you eventually find a local group to run with. The right group makes getting out there easier. If you ever end up traveling to central Illinois, I’ll hook you up with my run club.

    • Thank you, and no worries if you can’t participate in the running part immediately! Rehab is obviously number one. I’m going to do my best to get some posts and discussion going on the app, so definitely throw in your two cents even if you’re not able to run consistently right now!

      I haven’t been to Urbana-Champaign in some time, but if I’m ever somewhere south of Chicago I’ll let you know! (Listen to me talking like Illinois is a small state… can you tell I’m from New England? haha)

  5. Gosh, I’m sorry you ended up by yourself that morning. That just sucks. I joined your crew, but be warned – I’m currently sidelined by hip and knee problems so swimming and biking instead. I hope you eventually find a local group to run with. The right group makes getting out there easier. If you ever end up traveling to central Illinois, I’ll hook you up with my run club.

  6. I love your run posts and training logs; joining the crew! Hit me up if you’re ever in NYC (and near Central Park instead of Flushing).

    • But but but Flushing is just so… MaGiCaL!

      Just posted in the group this morning – apparently New Balance is sponsoring a Strava Challenge when you can redeem miles for free pizza, up to 100 miles, at 5 miles a slice. YUM. If I had plans to be in the city any time soon, I’d totally participate just to say I actually ran for pizza.

  7. So sorry you didn’t have a good experience! I’ve always preferred to run alone (slow pace + social anxiety) but I’d love to join your run crew!!

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