Running With A Partner

The guidelines below will allow you to maximise your running experience without alienating your running partner.

Before a run most people strap on and plug into their smartphone or walkman then hit the park or the streets. Because of this, running can often become a very lonely experience and if you are unable to join a running club then your motivation to run could become terminal. So what are your options; if you have friends or work colleagues that run then often salvation can be found here, running is addictive and a good run not only generates endorphins but enthusiasm. It is frequently us against the world and finding fellow brothers and sisters of the sport sock is great, failing that there are a number of websites, such as JoggingBuddy that allow runners to network with fellow runners in their area. But running with one or two people is very different to running on your own or in a group. The guidelines below will allow you to maximise your running experience without alienating your running partner. 1) Elect a leader Runners are pre-programmed to follow, we follow running routes, in races one tends to find someone running at the pace one is aiming for and follow them - following means one can switch off. The same applies when organising a group run. We all love democracy but some situations require a dictatorship and this is one of them. The leader’s job is to plan the run - plan the distance, the route, the time of day & where to meet. If you don’t have this then you’ll never get started. It is also worth noting that the leader must always attend the runs he/she has organised - this means that there is always at least one person there who knows the route. 2) Group runs are for running When you run with a partner, it is generally not for training, partner runs are junk miles, you run for the experience of running and for running with someone else, this is one of those times when it is not a race. 3) Set your pace to the slowest runner Group runs are only fun if everybody can do it as a group. A suggestion would be to agree how much of the distance you will run together - say between 60 and 75% of the distance - so if you were planning a 10K run then you would agree to run between 6 and 8K’s as a group, after this distance if one of you want to slow down or speed up then that is allowed, the bulk of the run has been run as a group so the function has been covered and with only a few miles or kilometres to go, the faster runner(s) are only going to be a few minutes longer. Advice for the slower runner If the pace is too fast, start a conversation with the faster runner - a good running pace should mean you can have a conversation without getting out of breath. Getting the faster runner to talk will naturally slow them down. 4) It’s okay to say something Pace aside - no matter how fast, slow, or fit you are you usually - sometimes you just have a bad couple of miles, you get a stitch, cramp, tightness in your joints. Your instinct will be to push through, hope that the other(s) feel the need to slow down but this is not always the case, if you need to go a bit slower just say something - nobody will mind. 5) Commit There is nothing worse than organising a run, and nobody turns up or a mile or so in the other person changes their mind and decides to stop - if you agree to run with someone for a certain distance, at a certain time - you need to follow through because it makes you look bad and it pisses them off. 6) Be prepared for the weather. If it’s hot bring water, if its going to rain - bring waterproofs. Other people are depending on you to turn up and follow through. If you follow these six simple rules, no matter how big or small your group or run, you will all have a good time.

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