Tuesday, 4 May 2010

"Join the club..."

I admit to having a bit of an allergy to clubs. Not necessarily running clubs, but sports clubs in general. Those who read the last entry will remember I talked about the St Andrews Rugby Club - I made my point about those guys. Basically, if you don't own Iceland (although, who wants to at the moment?) and have a deluxe yacht paid for with Daddy's money then you don't belong there. It reached a height with a 7 hour round trip to Ayr to play a match, which I was the only person not to play out of the entire squad.

I'm not an cocky, arrogant person (I think). If I'm not good enough to cut it - like I was in this instance - then I'll admit it. At least I gave it a go, right? But it was more the fact the other players considered me inferior to them, not on a technical, playing level, but on a personal level.

Throw in the football club I played with before. We were pretty shite. The ethos wasn't there. I think in the 6 or 7 years I played for them we won about 10 matches (and most of them were in 5-a-side tournaments). We all had fun, but at the same time I craved some success. It's only natural to be competitive when you're 12, right?

Which brings me neatly onto my point today. I've debated joining a running club for a while now. Many of my friends, both from home and University, say I should join a club. While it certainly holds an amount of appeal to me, I wonder if it's the best idea in the long term.

It's no surprise to hear me say that I enjoy running - after all, why am I doing it if I don't? My feelings are that joining a club might suck the enjoyment out of running - after looking at the average times for clubs in the Fife area, I'd be up there with the top runners as soon as I joined. This, I think, would mean I put myself under a lot of personal pressure - the pressure to succeed, not for myself but for everyone else. I'd start running not for myself but for a club. I've always ran for myself, I consider it to be a personal achievement and not sometihng that anyone else can influence. When I finish a race, I finish it because of my own training and not training that someone else has told me to do.

I'm not denying the social aspects of running - I could gas on for hours about various aspects of the sport - however at the same time my personality reflects that of a lone wolf - I'm not the most extroverted person in the world and running gives me that alone time I need to put my world to rights. It gives me personal, reflection time, and with a club I might lose that.

So anyway. It's in the back of my mind, but at the same time, I'm hesitant to take the plunge. I'm progressing nicely now as it is, and I see no reason to change at the moment.

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