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When the student becomes a teacher

Posted by Adam Salsman, Staff  October 18, 2013 07:32 AM

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Over the last few months, something odd, but wonderful, has happened.

Much like our beloved, but often maligned Elizabeth, I'm in a position of trying to guide someone into running better and more often. And much like Elizabeth, I am not a professional (just ask my boss) in these matters.

My wife has been steadily increasing her distance while bringing down her times. It's made me incredibly proud of her and excited for the actuality of having a real life running partner!

It's dramatically changed my perspective, however. I thought I knew exactly how to run "the right way" until the moment I was helping to bring someone deeper into the runner's world.

  • What's the best stretching routine?
  • How far should I run?
  • How long should I run?
  • How do recover after a run?

All of my answers were going to be "Just do what I do!" But, you know, we are all, as Lewis Black says, beautiful and unique snowflakes.

As time progressed, I learned to be less definitive and more educational. Statements like "You should stretch just like this!" became "Here's how I stretch. These tend to hit the issue areas I have."

The only fear I have is that with every run of hers, she is making significant improvement in distance and/or time. What happens when she starts smokin' my lazy legs on the race course?

P.S.: No, I promise not to abandon my virtual running peeps. I need the alerts and competition that people like @ejcomeau and @joe_allen_black have brought to my life. Not to mention the lessons they're learning and sharing so I can pay it forward!

Staying fit is an important part of staying healthy. This blog will offer exercise tips from experts as well as share the personal journeys of Globe staff members committed to fitness. No matter your age or energy level, we invite you to join in and share your own story. How do you find time to work out? What are your daily challenges? Let us know and read along -- and together, we can all get moving.


Elizabeth Comeau is a social media marketing manager at She will be blogging about her personal fitness journey and using a device called a FitBit to track her weekly goals and progress (see below). Follow her journey and share your own. Read more about Elizabeth and this blog.

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