There are so many things I could write about today. I could talk about running in the heat and high humidity, how to deal with injuries, nutrition, or even about staying on a training schedule. These four subjects seem to be constantly in my head.
Instead of those subjects, allow me to discuss the benefits of running with someone slower – yes I said slower. As runners we always seem to want to go faster and farther. That is why we train and push ourselves so much. We track our times, distances, paces, even our food – just to see what works for us.
Why would a runner who wants to go faster and farther run with someone slower. It’s actually very simple to me. When we run with someone slower, we tend to focus on the basics of running.
I had the privilege of running with someone this week who was returning to running after an extended break. They knew the basics already – hydrate, good shoes, cool clothes, etc. But what they needed most of all was motivation.
For someone who has run previously, 3 or 4 miles at a slow pace isn’t a huge challenge. The challenge lies in getting out and running. Once you are at the location you want to start from, the rest is easy – just start putting one foot in front of the other.
So how does running with someone who is at a slower pace help the faster runner? Very simply, it allows the faster runner to encourage the slower runner. This is just a small hill. You’re doing great. We are almost there. The faster runner isn’t thinking about the little things (aches, pains, pace, etc.). The faster runner becomes one with the slower runner and it actually makes the miles go by faster.
So to all of those (Mel, Dave, Jessica, Deb & Kym) who continue to give me advise and run slower with me, thank you. And to all of you who have encouraged me along the way (all of my DM friends - especially Marie, Alissa, Cindy & Kim, friends on Facebook – Ray & Karen, and to my family – my parents, Aunt Marcia & Uncle Brent), thank you.