The Best Running is Running with Friends

I’m linking up again this week with Debbie for her Wednesday Word link up! This week, we’re talking about friendship.

Deb Runs

I’ve always said the best way to get to know a person is to go for a run with him or her. For some reason, running breaks down most social barriers and you can talk freely about almost anything. I think it’s a combination of the exhaustive nature of running and the fact that you can say what’s on your mind without having to look someone in the eye. I’ve gotten to know someone better in a 60 minute run than some people that I’ve known for years. You can quickly bond with someone when you both share a love of running, and as a result a strong friendship can form.

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I have a friend named Kim who I have been running with for the past four years. I often refer to her as my “running buddy” but like most running buddies, she’s more than that.

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Sometimes we even match, without any prior planning!

Kim and I usually meet up on the weekend, which means our runs are more often than not long runs. Sometimes we run silently side by side. However, it is more common for our long run to turn into a social hour… or two. We have talked about everything from silly life anecdotes and jokes we recently heard to the more serious things in life. I don’t think there’s a topic under the sun we haven’t talked about while on a run.

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We’re there for each other to work through the thick and thin tribulations of life, and the thick and thin tribulations of a long run. We have pushed each other and helped keep each other going when one or the other was having a bad day. I have had many long runs where I just focused on whatever Kim was talking about instead of the run itself, just to keep going. We’ve both done that for each other, and it really helps to be able to focus on the conversation instead of how tired you are.

In addition to helping you keep going, a running buddy also keeps you accountable. It’s not easy to get up before the sun on your day off, just to head out for a run. Especially when the weather isn’t favorable. Kim and I have run together in all types of weather. We have run in freezing rain, wind so strong it knocks you off your feet, and several inches of snow. We have also run in weather so humid you could cut the air with a knife. There have been many times I would have been tempted to bag a run, had it not been for the fact that Kim was waiting for me.

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Lately we run together casually, as Kim is 8 months pregnant with her second baby. Our runs are more laid back, but I don’t mind because meeting up with Kim is about much more than a long run. There’s so much more to a run when you run with a friend.

The bond forged through running is a strong one, and I’d venture to say it’s a bond like no other. You see each other at your rawest, and your truest. Running has brought so many people into my life. Although I love running solo, it’s also fun to run with a buddy or a group. The best running is definitely running with friends.

If you’re a runner, do you prefer running solo, with a buddy, or with a group?
What activities in your life have led to strong friendships?

24 Comments

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  1. Must be a chick thing. I prefer to be alone but I get a kick out of the girls going by with a constant dialogue mixed in with their run.

    LUD.

    1. I like running solo, but I like doing my long run with a buddy so we can chit chat away!

  2. I typically run by myself, but I do like running with other people. I belong to a large running group, and members will often create an “event” out of their run on FB for anyone and everyone in the group to join. I’m always nervous going to the group runs, because I always think “what will I talk to a stranger about?” but I always manage to get along with whoever I’m running with and the time just flies by!
    Alison recently posted…Training for Tuesday: a link-upMy Profile

    1. We have gone to group pub runs a few times and I’m always nervous about that, too. It usually isn’t ever a problem once you’re running, though!

  3. Solo runner here, but the past few days I’ve been able to meet up with a buddy. Having someone there is definitely safer and helps pass the time. Hard part for me is scheduling, and that’s why I run alone more often than not.
    Richard recently posted…Day 2…This is More Like itMy Profile

    1. It is really good to have a buddy for so many reasons, and safety is definitely one of them. Especially on trails. I like how a running buddy also keeps you accountable!

  4. I trained for my first marathon with two wonderful women, Amy and Andrea, who taught me so much! They made the miles fly by and I loved their insight.
    Anne recently posted…Do a Friend a SolidMy Profile

    1. That’s great that you had them! I trained for my first half with a group of runners as part of Team in Training and, like you, I learned so much from them. It also helped me conquer new distances when I had people to run with!

  5. I run by myself, but I have a “tribe”of runner friends who I see at races and outside of running too! We support each other. There are a lot of group chats..
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…A week of friendshipMy Profile

    1. Always great to see familiar faces at races, even if y’all don’t routinely run together in training!

  6. You know that I love my running friends, and these days rarely run alone. I’ve met so many people through running and writing my running blog – like you! 🙂

    Thanks for linking up!
    Debbie @ Deb Runs recently posted…My One True BFFMy Profile

    1. You have such a great group to run with! I’m so glad we were able to meet through our blogs – I wonder if we would have ever met otherwise? 🙂

  7. I prefer running in a group, but most people don’t run at my pace so I do most of my running alone. Thankfully not all.

    I am always amazed at the things people will tell you while running. People that you didn’t really know before you started to run with them.
    Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy recently posted…Running FriendsMy Profile

    1. I’m glad you have a few people you get to run with! It’s amazing how well you get to know someone just through sharing some miles.

  8. Logistically, it’s hard to meet up with anyone to run. I run solo. I have run some in the past with a running buddy also named Kim. She is having knee problems right now. You are so right — you don’t have to look them in the eye. So it feels comfortable to say anything you want.
    HoHo Runs recently posted…Good FriendsMy Profile

    1. It is definitely difficult to match up schedules with others! I’m sorry your running buddy is having knee problems :-/ I hope she gets better soon so y’all can share some miles again!

  9. If you had asked me a few months ago I would have said I was more of a solo runner. I do meet up with a running buddy for accountability but she is faster than I am and she will go on so I did most of my runs solo. But here lately I have been running with some friends, about once a week. Sometimes its 2 of us sometimes 3 or 4. I like the fact that we can all talk but sometimes just listen and chime in. I think it’s good to run with others just as well as it’s good to run alone. But I do know it’s even better to have those friends to talk about running with that actually get you!
    Tricia@MissSippiPiddlin recently posted…Running FriendsMy Profile

    1. Sounds like a great group! I had many runs when I trained for a race with Team in Training where I would just listen to the conversation of the group and let it carry me along.

  10. I truly love both running solo and running with friends. The balance of having both in my running is really important to me!
    stephanie@nowirun.com recently posted…BeginningsMy Profile

    1. I feel the same way! I like for many of my runs to be solo, for my “me” time. But throwing in a run with a friend or group a few times a week is nice, too. It’s all about balance, like you said.

  11. (I swear I commented on this earlier so if this is a duplicate forgive me!)

    I LOVE running w/ friends. It seems like the act of running somehow breaks the ice and anything is okay to talk about. I’ve found that running with good friends that I’ve had for years and new friends is very similar–the talk just flows! +1 for reasons to run!
    jan recently posted…LaughterMy Profile

    1. Running takes down all of the barriers (well… most of them!). If I were in the dating world, I would totally choose a run as a first date over dinner 🙂

  12. I love running with friends, like you! Since I started running 8 years ago I have usually found a “running buddy” but like you said, they are more than a buddy but good friends! We have talked about just about everything under the sun! Running just sometimes helps work things out. Thanks for sticking with me in my very slow condition. I guess it is sometimes more about the miles/time than the pace. Enjoyed our run/walk this morning!

    1. I always enjoy running with you! It’s funny how we met through Nicki… what with me emailing her out of the blue and you just going up to her on the trail. I miss the runs the three of us would do on Wednesday nights!

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