My favorite running partner is my wife Amanda. Running together gives us dedicated time away from hectic schedules and opportunities to build memories around races. It’s fun to experience mileage and PR goals with each other and celebrate together. Running is a sport that challenges you mentally and physically and can help partners grow.
Running with a partner also bring challenges. It’s important to balance activities so that one person isn’t always in second place. I may be a faster runner than Amanda, but she rules in yoga. Choosing the right partner can help keep you accountable to training goals and making running more fun. Here are 4 rules for picking a running partner.
- Similar goals – Find a running partner who has similar mileage goals. It helps to be aligned on a training program. Partnering with someone running a marathon when your goal is a 5K won’t lead to a very long relationship.
- Workout Preference – Discuss your preferred workout schedule upfront. If you prefer morning workouts over night workouts, find a partner who also prefers this schedule. Agree on a day of the week for your long run since it takes more time. Setting expectations up front is key.
- Tough love – Pick a partner who will hold you accountable and push you to achieve your mileage, time or overall fitness goal. Choose someone who won’t hit the snooze button and make sure you are accountable to them as well.
- Aligned fitness level – Try to avoid partnering with a runner who is much better then you. You’ll have more success if your running partner is at a similar fitness level so you can pace and run similar distances together.
Looking for a group running program? Join 26.BREW, a Charlotte Marathon training program that includes weekly training runs, access to running experts, beer, running swag and more.
Aaron Hewitt, PA-C is a Physician Assistant with the OrthoCarolina’s Sports Medicine Center. He is a former Assistant Athletic Trainer with the Minnesota Vikings (NFL), and is an orthopedic provider for UNC-Charlotte and Myers Park High School. He also is a Physician Assistant Team Lead for Sports Medicine, Spine, Hand & Pediatrics and a Clinical and Surgical Preceptor for Physician Students.