Saturday, January 19, 2008


Interesting developments at running club. There has been a revolt in the slow group because over recent months, more and more people have started going out with them. This means that as well as the genuinely slow, a lot of the people who are nearer the slow end of the medium group have started running with the slow group. Typically on a club run well over half the people there, maybe even two thirds will go out with the slow group, leaving not many to run with the other two groups.
So the slowest of the slow have asked for the slow group to be split into two, so that there are now 4 groups. As I tend to run in the medium group, that shouldn't affect me, but it got me thinking. Why weren't the faster end of the slow group moving up to the medium group, instead of annoying the slowest people? And then it hit me. The medium group is getting faster. The chairman of the club always used to lead the medium group, but now finds himself trailing behind, and has said that he might go out with the faster half of the slow group.
And then on Monday something else hit me. Mid way round the run, the faster runners normally end up doing a slightly longer route. As usual we split up, some of the medium group and most of the fast group. As we got near the leisure centre I realised something. One of the fast group was behind me. Is the problem with the slow group partly caused by the fact that I'm too scared to attempt to run with the fast group? (OK, it's not just me who runs at roughly my speed in the medium group, but should someone in that little group take the lead in trying to run with the fast lads?)

On Thursday I had a meeting followed by lunch with a client in the sports industry. Conversation turned to different approaches towards making people fitter, healthier and thinner, both in this country and abroad. At this point one of the clients started talking about his sister, who has just lost seven stone. Can you imagine, he said.
I struggle to know what to do in that situation. Socially, I'm more relaxed about coming clean about it, but in a professional environment I'm not always convined that it's appropriate to share details like that. I'm their lawyer, and I'd rather they didn't think about or discuss my body. I didn't want to come across as sounding like I was trying to go one better and turn it into a competition "seven stone, that's nothing, I lost eight". How do you say that yes, I can imagine perfectly well, without going into territory that doesn't fit the client-lawyer relationship?
The client was a long term client too, one of those where I know perfectly well that I've met them before, but they have no recollection of meeting me. I know that I sat in on meetings when I was a trainee and took notes, but I haven't seen them for a few years. They don't realise that was me, and they don't connect the two people.

I just went quiet, I still struggle to know what to say sometimes.


Another situation in which I struggle to know what to say. I had my appraisal and Joanne used the P word. Partner. Apparently the support for my associate application was unanimous among the partners in Leeds, which I hadn't realised (and I keep thinking of random partners who I hadn't realised had even noticed me, let alone supported me). But I don't know whether partnership is what I want, even if I did think I was capable of it. It's not a short term thing, but an interesting thought to ponder.


Blogger Kathy said...

I relate to what you're saying about "should you say something?". I changed jobs recently so that I could start a job without people knowing I used to be fat. And hey, people DO treat me differently.

You're a different person now. It's wonderful that you lost 8 stone, but it doesn't define you. It's just one aspect of the fantastic person that is you. I don't think they need to know. If you want to tell them, that's your choice. There's so many layers to you - the runner, the lawyer who deserves to be partner if she wants to, the charitable person who'll run for a good cause, the person who loves walking in interesting places, the girl who can go out for Thai with her friends and have a good time, the rugby lover (sorry, Wallabies every time), the loving daughter, you are such an interesting person!!!

Good luck with the partnership decision. Well done on the "being a fast runner".

5:25 AM  
Blogger Lightning said...

Hmm let me see, you're fast enough to join the big boys in the fast group and good enough to become partner in your job.

What's holding you back, silly?


2:16 PM  

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