Who run the world?! Groups!
My solo runs are always a mixed bag of surprises. One day I’ll hit the road with little to no energy, or just feeling blah, and next thing you know I’ll have 10 miles in the bag. I have also experienced those days where I’ll have all the energy in the world, but then I’ll hit the wall and have to pack it in after 3 miles.
Is it my body, or is it a whole lot of mind games? I have found that consistency has a lot to do with me running alongside somebody. A run with a partner, or with my small group always yields great results with seemingly little effort. I’m always able to finish what I set out to do without much thought. Why isn’t this the case when I run alone?
According to an article in Runner’s World titled, “Perks of Running Solo or Social,” one of the biggest gifts that a running partner, or group can provide is accountability. So knowing that you have set a time to meet with your partner or group will motivate you to get out there, even if it means getting out of bed at 5am.
The same article states that accountability leads to peer pressure. In the article, Cindra Kamphoff, Ph.D., a sports psychology consultant at Your Runner’s Edge says, ”When you run with others, you tend to give more effort. You get caught up in the pace, and you might not recognize how fast you’re going.”
I have also found that running with a partner allows for a solid source of support, encouragement and inspiration. Sometimes all three elements arrive while chatting during, or after our run. Our talks can range in topics from running, relationships, spirituality and yes, even food. Interestingly, at times those runs can be done in complete silence because nothing needs to be said. Both are okay in my eyes.
In the end, I feel that running in a small group or with a partner can lead to some beautiful friendships. Maybe this is the key to the consistency that I’m unable to find in my solo runs. In the end there’s nothing like spending quality time with the stinky, sweaty people who you love!
Do you feel a difference between running by yourself versus running with others? Any preference for one over the other? We would love to hear your comments below!
This piece launches our weekly Motivational Monday theme. Each Monday we will be posting motivational pieces to get your week started on the right foot. Topics will vary from running, travel, spiritual topics and yes, maybe food! Food does inspire, no?!