The Most Informal Running Club Ever (TMIRCE) 
Monday, July 19, 2010, 10:41 PM
Posted by Administrator
While the name doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue (and the acronym isn’t any better), it’s an apt description of this weekly Cambridge gathering. I was impressed with both the size and the friendliness of this group. About 30 runners strong, I chatted with various people during our run along the Charles River – Margo the nuclear scientist, Larry the barefoot guy, Eileen the fellow MHC alum. And then with some more after the run – a few physicians and an economist. No slouches in this group. Cambridge is full of smarties.

Wanting to get in a long workout that day, I ran the dogs and then ran to the meeting spot, putting 5 miles in the bank before the 10:30 a.m. start time. The group offers distances of 3, 5 and 6 miles with a corresponding bridge for each distance. The Mass Ave Bridge was calling my name, but I pushed on to the Longfellow to make it an even 10 miles for the day – a choice I came to regret.

I had felt strong during my pre-TMIRCE miles, but that was before the heat and humidity completely wrecked me. My pace gradually slowed, I was liberal with my use of walk breaks during the last few miles, and I was nauseous for hours. But, determined to make the most of the experience, I stuck it out at the post-run potluck for about 30 minutes before deciding that I might actually vomit or pass out if I didn’t cool off. I suffered through the 2-mile walk home, took a long, cold shower and then spent an hour in the prone position. Eventually, I felt back to myself and able to take in (and keep in) some food.

The people were welcoming and the course is beautiful, but the coolest part of this group is the potluck held in Andy’s house. He leads TMIRCE and, every week, allows a large group of sweaty strangers to hang out in his living room, cook up some eggs on his stove, and stuff their faces while, undoubtedly, dropping lots of crumbs. With an arrangement like this, any strangers quickly become friends. Andy wasn’t actually there last weekend, but this kind of openness makes me like him immensely already.

Despite the less-than-optimal ending to my run, I look forward to giving it another shot. Maybe I’ll be a little less ambitious with the mileage next time.
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