It’s another edition of Just Run, where each month a group of my running blogger friends gather with their tips, tricks and thoughts on all things running.
In case you missed the previous editions:
This month we tackle running solo vs running with a group – which is better?
For me, I think it’s best to have a mix of both.
That wasn’t the case in my early years of running. I did most of my runs solo unless you count the times that I ran pushing the kids in the double BOB. Solo runs meant I got to enjoy the alone time to let my legs and thoughts wonder. I didn’t have to talk to anyone. I didn’t have to keep up. I could run my own pace and just run. Can you sense that I wanted to be alone? That’s what happens when you have small children hanging on you and a job that deals with being around people ALL day long.
And then one day I spontaneously decided I wanted to find someone to run with. I felt like I needed some company to push my pace a bit but for also safety reasons on my zero dark thirty runs. I first joined up with a running group that had runs of various distances on Saturday mornings from Runner’s Alley. Heading to the store that morning, I was so nervous. Would I be able to keep up? Will I be the slowest runner? My fears were quickly pushed away. I met so many people of various paces. I never ran alone and enjoyed the conversations that occurred naturally. Before I knew it, 8 miles along one of my favorite routes was done.
After that, I got up the nerve to put a plea out to my Facebook friends in search of a running buddy. That was 7 years ago, since then I have been blessed with multiple running buddies. We’ve laughed, sweated and had a great time getting to know each other. It’s amazing how much you can learn about someone while out on a run. I not only found new running buddies, I found genuine friends.
My running buddies have motivated me to get out of my comfort zone. I learned that I could actually run faster than I thought I could. My running buddies have motivated me to get my ass out of bed on a zero dark thirty morning to run more miles than what the temperature is in the dead of winter. My running friends that I’ve made over the years have become some of my greatest friends. In all honesty, if it wasn’t for running, I probably never would have met them otherwise. They may even know more about me than my non-running friends.
Running with a group can be tricky. It can be easy to get wrapped up in the run and run faster than you are supposed to. Or you may find that the group is running slower than your usual pace. For the most part, I like to plan group runs on easy running days where pace is meant to be relaxed.
Right now, I’m very content with my mix of solo and group runs. On average, I run 1-2 times a week with someone and 2-3 times solo. It’s the best of both worlds.
Want to know what my running blogger friends think about running solo vs running with a group? Be sure to click on the image or their name to find out.
What do you prefer – solo or group runs?