We finally joined the Prospect Park Track Club (PPTC) a couple days ago.
This time last year we knew we were going to move to Brooklyn in 2015 as soon as the house we bought was liveable (we bought a real fixer-upper). We were excited about the new chapter in our lives. I was looking forward to a shorter commute to work and living back in my beloved New York City. I know there are people who really love New Jersey (Ben is one of them), but I am not one of them. We were looking forward to getting to know our neighborhood, exploring new restaurants and bars, and hanging out in Prospect Park.
One of the few things that I miss about our old home in Hoboken was our running club. Our friends were members and I relied on the weekly runs to see them regularly. Obviously we don’t see them as much anymore and I missed the weekly social gathering and running. We were committed to finding another running club to call home. In NYC there’s no shortage of running clubs; you have everything from the elites/sub-elites (New York Athletic Club) to run/walker groups.
While we were looking for a club to join, we had a few requirements:
- It had to be close to us. We didn’t want a long commute to get to a weekly run. We like convenience.
- We wanted to be in the middle of the pack in terms of speed. We didn’t want to be the fastest runners, nor did we want to be the slowest runners in the group. We like being with faster runners who push us to become faster, but we also don’t want to be the ones who get dropped all the time either.
- Membership had be to cheap. Our Jersey City running club was free. We don’t mind paying fees, but we don’t want our hobby to cost us even more than it already does. $100 annual fee? Sorry, you’re out.
- We wanted a social running group that was also serious about running. Or was it that we wanted a serious running group that was also social? Basically we wanted to be in a group of runners who took running seriously and interested in improving and running fast, and also wanted to hang out and be social. There’s nothing wrong with running groups that only care about being social or groups that are just focused on getting faster, but those aren’t for us.
PPTC was one of the first clubs we checked out and we figured out pretty quickly that this was the club for us. We already knew a couple of the members (and I got to know two more). We’ve done a few of their races this past summer and those were fun. Over the summer we were gone a lot, so we figured there wasn’t much point to joining because we were going to miss a lot. Then came fall and we were gone pretty much every weekend because of races. Finally the time was right (mostly because December 1st the last day to pre-register for the February PPTC Cherry Blossom 10-miler and Ben wanted the PPTC membership discount) and we joined.