I’m out for a run with Matteo. The weather is horrible; grey, cold, humid. Yet we’re running. He’s here in the Netherlands to run, so I can’t let him down. I guess that’s why people have running buddies, because running with a friend keeps you going.
As you know, when I’m running on my own, I listen to audio-books. One of the books I’m listening to now is Atomic Habits. As you also probably know, I’m very interested in habits; how to form good ones, how to get rid of bad ones.
One of the topics James Clear, the author of the book, is talking about, is how the role of family, friends or even just people around us shape our habits. In our case, if we’re surrounded by runners, it’s easier to go for a run. Like today. If it was for me, I might have postponed it. Used last Sunday’s race as an excuse for another day of rest, but now Matteo is over from Italy, I’m running.
Find a friend
It’s a little trick we teach our yoga students as well; find a yoga friend. Maybe one to go to a yoga school with, maybe one who comes over to your place to practice. It can even be a friend who you sent a WhatsApp message to in the morning as a practice reminder. Or you do a WhatsApp call, both practicing in front of the screen. Whatever works is fine.
If you like running, but you have problems going out on your own, maybe you should join a club. It’s harder to skip a training session if you know people are waiting for you. Yes, it’s social pressure, but it’s a healthy form of it.
Plus, running together can be fun. I like to run with Sara. Just her smile makes it worth going out. I like to run with Matteo. We’re an odd couple. I don’t speak Italian, he speaks little English. I only understand a bit of Italian, he luckily understands more and more English. But somehow we always have fun.
Which means I don’t only run for the fun of running. I also run, because I have fun with Matteo, with Sara, with my sister. Going to a race, becomes a day out, a social event. Sometimes even a weekend out. Which then motivates me again to go for that run when the weather is grey like today.
So if you need some extra motivation, running with a friend keeps you going. Now you just have to find that friend.