In theory the idea of pounding the pavements with someone else is lovely. I've got a romantic vision of speeding along the banks of the Thames in the winter sunlight with a running pal. Nothing can stop us. We're encouraging each other and challenging each other.
But another part of my brain is convinced that it just isn't possible. What if we have different paces? What if I'm holding them back? What if they're holding me back? What if I get tired and want to stop? What if they get tired and want to stop? Do we have to talk? Won't I be too tired to talk? If we don't talk won't it be a bit weird? Or awkward?
Plus my mind always drifts back to one of my very first (and incredibly unsuccessful) runs with a group of friends when I was in my first year of uni. It was horrific.
I also find running great for de-stressing, letting my thoughts run riot and generally getting rid of some of my worries. With all the stresses of running with someone, what if that gets ruined?
But last week I was getting ready to pop out for a short and easy run when I realised my flatmate Iona was also lacing up her trainers. Turns out we were actually intending to run the exact same route. After much "see you out there!" we finally decided to try running together.
|Begrudging running buddies|
It might sound antisocial but for us it worked a treat.
It was actually really nice knowing someone was there with me and at no point did I feel stressed about pace. We gave each other the option to drop back/carry on ahead if we needed to but we seemed to manage just fine!
Now that I've finally got over my fear of running with others I'm not really sure what's next. I've always wanted to try a running group but the worries mentioned above always stopped me. Maybe I'll even be able to TALK while running?! I know, I know, baby steps...but never say never.
Are you a running loner? Would you recommend joining a running group?