Training solo vs. Training with a buddy + Running gear must have’s

I read somewhere, it was probably Runner’s World, that finding the perfect running partner is a lot like finding the perfect mate. At first I laughed, thinking, that’s a little creepy but the more I thought about it, the more I totally agreed. I’ve spend 90% of my running life alone. There have been partners here and there, for sure, but none of them have quite measured up. I got tired of constantly pushing, constant cheerleading and the tireless quest to get them to my level. It was exhausting. And I always felt my goals suffered because of it. For the last half marathon I trained entirely alone and I’ll admit, it broke me a little bit. Those long runs can be mind blowing and heart breaking. Two weeks before my half, for the final long run, I met Allison, a person who I instantly felt a running/life connection with. I remember thinking after that 10 mile run: “Wow, everything feels different now.” My spirit didn’t feel as broken. I was looking forward to the race. I had a renewed sense of confidence. And, in typical “dating” fashion, I contemplated when the best time to contact her again was, waiting a week or so. When we exchanged phone numbers, I found myself holding back a little. I didn’t want to be like a stage 5 clinger. I approached running dates with Allison as if they were actual dates with a man, finding that the same rules really did apply. As time went on I found her to be: considerate, motivating, punctual, and willing, everything you need in a running partner. Since we are training for the same race, our training has been almost perfectly synced. Truly, I have never felt faster or stronger. I have never felt so eager and willing. I have never been so excited to see where my legs can take me. It’s about 3 weeks till the BAA Half Marathon and every single day I feel and see results. My body, mind and heart are indeed, changing.

Yes, it took 15 years of running to find the one person in this world who can stand me/keep up with me and a majority of days I feel like I am trying to keep up with her, which is great. The right training partner can change everything. And while those solo runs are still super important for a multitude of reasons, the support on scattered days, means the world. So I encourage you all to find a running group in your area, which is where I met Allison and many other VERY motivating people in my life right now. The right one will fit like the perfect shoe and will inspire you to get out of your comfort zone and push yourself to new and invigorating places. If you live in Maine, go hop on the Maine Track Club’s website for a complete list of running groups.

Running Items Above:
1. Run Inspire Crop II $92.00 (www.lululemon.com)
2. Kick Asphalt 2 in 1 Short $56.00 (www.athleta.com)
3. Happy Hatha Hour Bag $118.00 (www.lululemon.com)
4. Garmin Forerunner 10 (Can buy them at most athletic stores, about $110.00)
5. Mizuno Wave Rider 16 (purchased mine at Maine Running Company, $120.00)

This gear, for me, has made a HUGE difference. The bag is large enough that I can tote all my running items and fashionable enough that I can bring it out if I need to. The Mizuno Wave Rider’s have made a really difference in my gate and are the perfect balance of light with support. And of course, the two in one shorts are lovely for those of us who still have that little bit of thunder thigh. No shame in that though ladies.

Have a great Wednesday! Happy running everyone!

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