I’ve been running for a little over a year now and I have only ran one race, a 5K, with a friend. I have never run with anyone else during my training runs. I started out running in the evenings on the treadmill after my daughters went to bed. I slowly eased into outdoor running on the weekends when my husband was able to be with the kids. Once spring came I tried my best to do all my running outdoors. Now you will rarely find me on the treadmill.
My neighbor and I are training for the same half marathon coming up in September. With both of us being super busy with our family and work we have never been able to coordinate running together. Many times we actually trade off watching each other’s children so that we can each squeeze in our own workouts.
However, today the stars aligned and we were both available for a run. So at 9:00 in the morning we headed out into the 90 degree humid weather. Our plan was to run six miles. The arboretum where we run has a 4.5 mile loop and another 1.5 mile short cut that would get us our 6 mile total.
At the start of the run I realized that she is a bit faster than I am. It was a lot of work to keep up with her pace. I am sure that I was holding her back a bit. It was very necessary for me to take several walking/hydration breaks during this run. I’m sure that my running buddy did not need these breaks, however, she never complained.
As we were close to completing the 4.5 mile loop she asked me if I still wanted to do the 1.5 mile short-cut. I responded by saying, “Oh course I don’t WANT to do it, but I’ll feel good when we finish it. So yes, let’s do it.” Honestly, if I had been running on my own I would have quit and gone back to the car after the 4.5 miles. So having my friend there not only pushed my speed, but she challenged my endurance as well.
I would love to be able to schedule at least one run a week with a buddy, but with everyone’s busy schedule I know that’s a lofty goal. So I’ll take what I can get.