You know the old adage – run fast alone, run far together.
I’m admittedly more often than not a solo runner. It’s a consequence of my introverted tendencies. Of the fact that I started distance running as a way to work out my thoughts. Of the fact that my runs are often the only real alone time that I get in a day. And of the fact that I’m busy and usually just kind of squeeze it in when I can. But that said, I love how the miles just fall away on long runs with friends. Talking as the sidewalk passes under our feet and forgetting about the effort because we’re naturally pacing each other.
Universal’s Inaugural 5K and 10K earlier this year.
Still, coming into running, I’m always confronted with friends who are worried about running together. That they won’t be able to keep pace or that they’ll somehow derail the training of a more advanced friend if they join them on the course.
Princess Race Weekend 2020.
And to them, I say this.
Ten reasons why you should never, ever hesitate to join a more experienced runner on the course:
- The Results Don’t Change. The other day I was out running with a friend who was really struggling. She was pacing about a 13 minute mile and at one point said we might as well be walking. I asked her if walking sounded better just about then and she said hell yes. I said, “it does for me, too. That means we’re still working.” We’re not training for the Olympics. We’re all in this to feel and look just a little better. And last I checked, that happens whether I’m running fast or slow.
- Chill Runs Are Amazing. In fact, a nice relaxed run is something that I look forward to, too. I’m happy to pace you at whatever speed makes you comfortable.
- My Friends Are More Important Than My Runs. Your friendship is 1000 times more important to me than my finishing time on some random training run. If I get to pair my hour of running with an hour catching up with you, call me doubly blessed and all the more clear headed when it’s done.
- I’m Kinda Selfish. And you’re going to be much, much better company if you aren’t dry heaving on the course. So pacing for you is really in my best interest too.
- We’re Both Safer For It. And that new trail or route that I’ve been eyeing? I’m going to feel a lot safer doing that with a friend. Safety in numbers, after all.
- The Miles FLY By. There is nothing in this world better than realizing that you’ve gone several miles without realizing it because you were having so much fun talking the whole time.
- Your Goal is My Goal. If we’re out there together and you are less experienced than me, my goal is to achieve your goal by your side. Whether it’s a pace or a distance or a finish line, my joy on that run is seeing you conquer it. Let me be there for you.
- You Are Pushing Me Too. When I’m focused on you, I’m not focused on my own discomfort. When I’m cheering for you, I’m learning not to be in my own head. That makes me a stronger runner, too.
- And in the rare event that I need some time alone or am really going for speed, I’ll tell you. Sometimes I sign up for a race with the goal of PRing it. Sometimes I start running and am feeling it and want to take off. Sometimes I’m really in my own head and just need to work it out solo. I know myself and my goals well and I’m honest about them. If I have told you my plan is to run with you, then my plan is to run with you.
- Crossing the Finish Line Together is AMAZING. I don’t care if we’re training in your neighborhood or finishing a marathon together. There is no greater feeling than finishing it hand in hand with your people.
Star Wars Rival Run 2019.
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If you’re planning a trip to Disney and want a fun way to rock a mask, check out my designs at TeePublic right HERE!! If you cannot or choose not to visit now and are looking for a way to bring the magic home, I’d love for you to check out my Core Memory Candle collection right HERE. And as always, stay safe and be kind, my friends.