Future of RM

Questions and comments about the forum or the web site
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Spirit Unleashed
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Re: Future of RM

Postby Spirit Unleashed » Thu Apr 06, 2017 3:00 pm

I joined in 2008. Back then, people were getting together at races and having food after races. I came to Canada 4 times and met many people. That is probably why I feel comfortable staying. I actually met many of the people.
Athlete....Maniac 973....Marathon Maniac 6645
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Re: Future of RM

Postby deerdree » Thu Apr 06, 2017 3:04 pm

scrumhalfgirl wrote:I'm guilty of not getting on here very frequently any more, and honestly it's because I'm rarely on a desktop other than at work, and I find forums clunky on mobile (even with an app). The only reason I check in to see how old friends are doing - both in training and in life - though I do keep up with many of you on social media.

scrummy!! as an example, i was talking to colette last weekend and she told me about the great article she'd read about you and your run-commuting recently, and i was like, "HOW DID I NOT SEE THAT ON RM???"

we've lost a bit of 'general running discussion', which should be the most popular section. with that said, there were comments on the article and canadian running magazine has a FB page where one could discuss articles so maybe this just isn't the place for discussion anymore. moreover, some of the 'general running discussion' threads here seem to die with one post.

(but nice article :D)

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Thu Apr 06, 2017 3:05 pm

so um.... someone needs to post that in the GRD. stat.
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First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Thu Apr 06, 2017 3:05 pm

(also I didn't see it on fb!)
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby tayken » Thu Apr 06, 2017 5:10 pm

Good rational points made in your detailed post. It's easy to get into a slump when virtual friends inadvertently turn a forum into a catching up on what you are doing, as opposed to the bullet points below.

dgrant wrote:I don't mean for this post to upset anyone or be contentious. The site is still used by a few people who seem to enjoy it and that has value.

However...

I don't think using social media to funnel in users will have any benefit without first or concurrently upgrading the forum's content. If I were a new user seeing RM for the first time now, I'd see 10 or 15 users (who know each other very well but are strangers to me) chatting among themselves. There are very few debates or "Hey, checkout what I found" posts or questions that might incite a new user to login to answer or say "I'd like to know too". What is there to engage a new person or bring back old ones? What can I sink my teeth into?

If the current users aim to increase membership and have more conversations, they should consider whether their posts would be of interest to anyone who hasn't known them personally for years. Maybe for every time you post that you ran 12km this morning or you had a rough day at work:

- Post a link to and comment upon some interesting running-related thing you saw recently.
- Post a reply when someone else does the above. Use content to create more content.
- Get in some lively, civilized arguments. Debates aren't just for people who like to fight.
- Post pictures.

Back in the day when we built this site from nothing to something, it took a few people consciously creating conversation for conversation's sake. And yes, it risked other people saying "Why are you always stirring things up?" or "Why would you want to go for beers with someone you only know online?" or "I think you like to hear your own voice". But that's what grew the site. It takes a lot of behind-the-scenes machinations to create what looks like organic growth. You can't build things by being shy or cool.

Of course the social media landscape was completely different in 2005, and the reality is that maybe the battle for message boards is too uphill in 2017.

(Having said all that, I'm personally not willing to do any of the above. I like my running kept to its simplest these days, and I don't have much to talk about.)

(Having said "having said all that"... One idea I had a couple years ago in the months leading up to the 10th anniversary was to encourage "Where are you know" posts from lapsed original users on their respective 10th RM anniversaries. Between 2015 and maybe 2020 there would have been a steady stream of people having 10th anniversaries, and it might have reengaged users to post their updates and periodically check in to read those of others.
Maybe that's an idea.)
On the books for 2017

Winterman 10km - (1st in age group) - Feb 19,
Chilly Half Marathon - Mar 5 (Done)
Around the bay 30k - Mar 26, (Done)
Limestone 1/2 - Apr 30,
Ottawa race weekend Voyager Challenge - May 27-28,
Spring Fling Toronto - June?
World Record Kilt Run Perth - June 24
Foam Fest 5k Ottawa - Jul 22
Pure Protein Night Race - Aug 12
Army Run Vimy Challenge - Sep 17
Marathon Du P'tit Train Du Nord Quebec - Oct 22

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Re: Future of RM

Postby IronColl » Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:57 pm

eme wrote:
ultraslacker wrote:
eme wrote:I could coordinate instagram, if you need a volunteer for a RM account.


Isn't that what IronColl was offering?


Sorry, I misunderstood.


ultraslacker wrote:No worries, we can have more than one person. I have a few ideas rolling around now.... give me to the weekend.


i am happy to share the duties with other people. I can't do that all by myself but if I were given a specific time to be in control of the account (say 1-10 of every month) then that is something I can commit too.

dgrant also has the valid point about making the site more welcoming. Maybe then us current members should try being more active: post in other people's training journals and in the daily thread. I know I don't do much of either but I can certainly step it up.
If all that you read is everything you believe then let go, then let go, then let go.

Nothing will change if you never choose.

2018 goals: May half marathon, September half marathon

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Re: Future of RM

Postby scrumhalfgirl » Fri Apr 07, 2017 1:44 pm

Look at me logging in twice in one week! (largely because I'm working from home right now!)

Agree that using SM would still need to drive traffic here to something. What I loved about RM back in the day was that is was big enough to have a fairly regular stream of new content but small enough that you got to know the other posters. The fact that it was Canadian also meant we had a pretty good size group in major cities that could meet IRL which strengthens relationships.

I have been semi-active on another message board over the last decade - it used to be probably larger than RM but a similar feel. Overtime, it stopped getting a significant influx of new members, but there was a large enough core who stuck around that it's sustained at least somewhat - though not at the same pace as it did previously (and lots of old members have left). I know the admins there put a fair bit of effort into encouraging and generating new contact and trying to flow search engine traffic over.
Jesse's 2017 Plans
April - Boston Marathon
May - Sporting Life Ottawa 10K
May - Ottawa Half Marathon

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:55 pm

sorry guys I did not get to it on the weekend (obviously) but will try again soon. It's been crazy around here lately and I've been falling into bed at the end of the day. :lol:
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Jwolf » Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:47 pm

Above I had posted that I might be interested in writing some sort of periodic blog post, but I can't even keep up my own journal. I don't think I can commit to a regular thing. :?
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Re: Future of RM

Postby Jwolf » Thu Apr 13, 2017 9:53 am

One idea I had was that we could have a place on the site (outside the forum) for commonly asked running questions. We often get the reruns of same questions from new runners, or injured runners, or whatever. Someone may come and do a forum search and dig up an old post that went off the rails, or just find the forum searching a bit overwhelming. It would be nice to have a centralized place with common questions and good answers. This would be something separate from the forum and static. Like "How do I start a running program," "How do I get faster," etc. The answers could be written by someone that could summarize the best parts of the real answers into a coherent blog-like article. Of course, there are many places on the web that have this sort of thing-- not sure if we'd be re-inventing the wheel.
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Re: Future of RM

Postby Dstew » Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:47 pm

This was a running site that naturally and predictably has become a social site with groups and cliques. When it first started, you had a bunch of people mostly in their 30s and 40s searching for a way to improve their running and maybe even dare to dream about making it to Boston. Goals were met, injuries were sustained and thus slowly but surely, people were going to drift away. As someone always on the fringe, the core people who still make up this site developed friendships, bonds and a certain set of rules for behaviour and what even could be said. When the site first started, it was what you said that mattered most, now it is who said it. At one point, someone suggested anyone who cheated in a running event and would automatically be unethical in the real world. Simply being a runner imbedded one with certain virtues. I disagreed and was attacked as being disloyal to the religion of running and thus an ungrateful cad to those on this site. The irony is Ian made essentially the same argument and as he is a member of the ruling elite, his remarks passed without comment. Or the time I suggested running for races may not be the healthiest pursuit one could do, I was attacked as a heretic. I was assumed to read the two leaders of the mob suffered injuries that derailed running goals due to the sweet irony of what happened.

I find runningmania to be an old "runners" club with inside jokes. The members are now a little older and so although running is still discussed, children, career and other concerns of the more mature person dominate. And if anyone new does come in, they are greeted warmly but as an old boy's club, the conversation turns quickly back to the familiar. I found the same thing in cycling forums. For me, I was not willing to pay the initiation "fee" as although I love cycling, I am not all that interested in competitive cycling. My grand plans for at least six gran fondos has transformed into a 90 K ride and a 135 K fondo this year and then that is it. I plan to own my this bike for at least 10 years. I have no real goal or ambition to get any faster or be able to ride a 100 mile ride for example. If anything, I bought a small lock so I can ride about 30 - 35 K, stop and have a coffee and then ride back home. I suspect the same is happening here:

There is a certain inevitability that runners are eventually going to stop racing. And when that happens, people will drift away. At one time, many of us were discussing how to qualify for Boston, run their first 10 K race, etc. For me and I suspect for many others, how do I "run" the 3 K to the coffee shop, have a coffee and bagel and make it back without hurting myself or aggravating anything too severely. Not exactly anything to write about or at least after the initial sharing.

When running or other issues are discussed here, 90 % is " I plan to run 5 K." and later " I ran 5 K". If you are lucky, someone might even add if it was hot or if it rained. I had come to the conclusion that cycling is a superior activity to running. I wanted to test my theory and there is zero response. My conclusion is that if even on a subconscious level, I have been an outcast and thus not really worth responding to.

If my analysis is correct, there is very little if anything can be done. When the odd new comer does show up, they are meet with a group of veterans who have been there and done that. There is no one else who is sharing their experiences at the same time they are. Add in that the group is very tight and very familiar with inside jokes and stories, it would be very hard for someone to relate. When new employees want help how to deal with a technical situation they call me. When they want to share the horrors of the job they are facing, they go for a beer with the person sitting next to them. This is no different.

Most web groups eventually fade away and die. The shared passion eventually is not enough. You have debated and discussed all aspects of a narrow interest and so the reason for the sites existence ceases to be. This site is now a social site where a bunch of people happen to run. So although it may not grow or even really be revived, I do not see it going away. A few people are going to stop racing do to choice or due to an injury. They may stick around to read about running. But eventually, they may even stop running or at least having any interest in sharing the 3 K job they did two weeks ago. But there will be a few new members, maybe not enough to completely replace those lost but enough to keep this site viable for some time.

For me, as an example, I have a road race in May and a duathlon in September. So I have a small toe still in the racing water and thus enough interest and motivation to come back. Although the mind is willing, my body in no uncertain terms has told me no more marathons and most recently, a 10 K race is even too far. I have to say I am actually starting to embrace the idea that I may not "have" to run as may be hanging up my race shoes for good. That if I can run 3 K to the grocery store as I did this morning and walk home, I feel good and really do not need to do anything else. For the last 15 years, I have run 5 - 50 K races on road, trails and even to the summit of a mountain. I have run Boston and finished on the podium against the field or my peers 17 times. So what is there left for me to do. Especially when running also gave me an "runner's [enlarged] heart" on top of the damage my childhood rheumatic fever did and thus an increased risk in issues I do not want to deal with. Or chronic injuries at the site of my stress fracture, my hip injury and the compression fracture in my low back. A nice rest and a bag of ice just is not cutting it anymore and I have to ask myself is there any logical or rational reason to do another race? Maybe a last second 5 K or equivalent trail race just because. Same with cycling after this year - why do an organized ride when 50 K on my own is fun? So when that happens, the common interest of racing disappears and thus any reason to be on this site. I lack the personal connections, my choice, that others have and will keep them coming back.

How do you attract new male runners? You have Ian and a bunch of old men being held together will duct tape and hope. This is not to diminish anyone on this site, especially the legend Ken but how does a young male relate to a group of veterans who have been there and done that over ten years ago or longer. I do not think you can and so enjoy what you have as it may not be much better than this.

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Ironboy » Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:51 pm

Holy crap, you come in to look for a squash soup recipe and you find this.

We should go back to poaching users from the RunningRoom forums, like in the good ole days.

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Ironboy » Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:52 pm

deerdree wrote:.. maybe if we change the name to crossfit mania? :lol:


I'm down for that! ;) :lol:

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Jwolf » Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:53 pm

Ironboy wrote:Holy crap, you come in to look for a squash soup recipe and you find this.

We should go back to poaching users from the RunningRoom forums, like in the good ole days.


Lol Running Room forums are gone too. :)
Support me in my fundraising for the Boston Marathon, Boston Public Library team:
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Re: Future of RM

Postby tayken » Tue May 02, 2017 12:07 pm

Off the running room forum yes, but the members are still alive elsewhere

Jwolf wrote:
Ironboy wrote:Holy crap, you come in to look for a squash soup recipe and you find this.

We should go back to poaching users from the RunningRoom forums, like in the good ole days.


Lol Running Room forums are gone too. :)
On the books for 2017

Winterman 10km - (1st in age group) - Feb 19,
Chilly Half Marathon - Mar 5 (Done)
Around the bay 30k - Mar 26, (Done)
Limestone 1/2 - Apr 30,
Ottawa race weekend Voyager Challenge - May 27-28,
Spring Fling Toronto - June?
World Record Kilt Run Perth - June 24
Foam Fest 5k Ottawa - Jul 22
Pure Protein Night Race - Aug 12
Army Run Vimy Challenge - Sep 17
Marathon Du P'tit Train Du Nord Quebec - Oct 22

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Fri May 05, 2017 6:18 pm

I'm trying to start an RM instagram and it won't let me use runningmania.com as a username. Someone already has that name. Is it us or does someone have our name? I suck at instagram so I can't tell lol. Ideas? What should we use instead? Or is it us and I forgot the password from years ago? Maybe I should try to log in.


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"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Fri May 05, 2017 6:28 pm

When I try to log in with runningmania.com as the username, it says the username doesn't exist. But when I try to create it as a new username, it says it's already taken. :/

Maybe it doesn't like the .com in the username.

Will figure this out. I know we already have a twitter account too, I just need to remember the password for it.

My thought it to reactivate them all and get a bunch of you on hootsuite (or something similar) so that you can post in one place and have them blasting out across all the different media.
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Jwolf » Fri May 05, 2017 6:36 pm

ultraslacker wrote:When I try to log in with runningmania.com as the username, it says the username doesn't exist. But when I try to create it as a new username, it says it's already taken. :/

Maybe it doesn't like the .com in the username.

Will figure this out. I know we already have a twitter account too, I just need to remember the password for it.

My thought it to reactivate them all and get a bunch of you on hootsuite (or something similar) so that you can post in one place and have them blasting out across all the different media.


Didn't the two colleens talk about setting up an account? Or were they waiting for you to do it?
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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Fri May 05, 2017 6:46 pm

they were waiting for me to do it.

I'm setting up accounts now. Then I'll give people access to use them.

I'm thinking people in cities across the country so that we can have regional representation.

I'm also going to close the extra facebook group (we have two). Link everything up so that whenever something is posted in one medium it goes to all of them.

And if there are people who do want to do blog posts, we'll add those too.
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Fri May 05, 2017 6:48 pm

I just had an idea... if we want to draw newcomers into forum discussions, twitter might be a good way to do that...
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby eme » Sat May 06, 2017 10:55 am

ultraslacker wrote:I just had an idea... if we want to draw newcomers into forum discussions, twitter might be a good way to do that...


If you have a business page on Instagram (free), you can share directly to your business FB and Twitter pages. Not sure if it works with a group FB page, but it makes for easy sharing across platforms. Hootsuite would work as well, but I am not sure if you have to pay for that.

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Sat May 06, 2017 3:24 pm

Jwolf wrote:One idea I had was that we could have a place on the site (outside the forum) for commonly asked running questions. We often get the reruns of same questions from new runners, or injured runners, or whatever. Someone may come and do a forum search and dig up an old post that went off the rails, or just find the forum searching a bit overwhelming. It would be nice to have a centralized place with common questions and good answers. This would be something separate from the forum and static. Like "How do I start a running program," "How do I get faster," etc. The answers could be written by someone that could summarize the best parts of the real answers into a coherent blog-like article. Of course, there are many places on the web that have this sort of thing-- not sure if we'd be re-inventing the wheel.


these could be some of your blog posts!
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby ultraslacker » Sat May 06, 2017 3:29 pm

ok, we have twitter and instagram. I'm going to give access to the Colls first (eme and IronColl) since they volunteered to start that. I can post from Vancouver. That gives us representation from three provinces.

So far in this thread we've had three people offer to contribute to blogs (Jwolf, avis, and daddy_runner). Are you all still game for that? It doesn't have to be on a strict schedule, whatever you can commit to. For Dale's, maybe what we could do is tweet and discuss what you're already blogging in your blog, rather than re-invent the wheel... it would drive traffic to your existing blog but also generate discussion/traffic for us.
"You're an ultrarunner, normal rules don't apply to you." (Doonst)


First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do. ~Epictetus

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Re: Future of RM

Postby IronColl » Sat May 06, 2017 4:26 pm

The colleens...

nice
If all that you read is everything you believe then let go, then let go, then let go.

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2018 goals: May half marathon, September half marathon

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Re: Future of RM

Postby Ironboy » Sat May 06, 2017 4:37 pm

I think the social media thing is great, but I can't help thinking that having a strong presence at races with his signage is a key tactic.

Not an easy one, but when people see the community in action, it has a more profound impact.

And is we ever do shirts again, having the site address in large print on the back with a tag line would be a good one too


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