Running is a regimen that some people like to do alone. It is a stress reliever and a time to contemplate and cleanse your mind from the daily routine and weekly grind. On the other hand, running is great when done with a group, especially with the local running community. The activity acts as a shared morale booster and social event. Running with a group, large or small, may also be an extremely effective training method. Having some running buddies can help boost your motivation and make running more social and enjoyable.
According to research, runners who are part of a group or a club feel supported both during and after the run, and they also report making meaningful friendships inside the larger running group.
So, how do you find your people if you're new to running or moving to a new town? Here are some factors you need to consider when finding your running community:
Type of Running Community
There are various types of running groups. Some running groups have a specific goal in mind. There are marathon groups, for example, and track groups for runners who compete in sprint distance events. Some groups are more competitive than others, and they run to compete in races.
On the other hand, others run because they enjoy being outside with other people who love running. So make sure you know what type of group you would like to be a part of, so you can be with people who share the same goal as you do.
There are numerous ways to find local running communities, including a simple online search of "running group" plus the name of your city or town. You can also inquire in your local community center, church, school, fitness stores, or neighborhood park.
Many running groups meet at the same spot every time they work out. Other groups, on the other hand, make it a point to take detours. Once you've found a running community in your area, you must know where they meet. In addition, you would want to make sure that the meeting locations are convenient for you.
Many running groups gather after work, depending on the number of times in a week they agreed upon. People find that a post-work training schedule is practical because they can't leave the office and have family obligations in the morning.
However, if you have other commitments in the evenings or prefer a morning routine, some running groups provide morning workouts for early risers who want to exercise before work. You must be aware of your schedule so that you can keep up with the group.
Distance and Pace
Most running groups, huge ones, have runners of all abilities. Smaller running groups, on the other hand, may not have a diverse variety of skills. Therefore, you need to know the pace and distance of runs that the group does at each meet-up to determine if you are capable of doing so.
If you are unsure about your own average pace and distance capability, go for a few runs on your own and time yourself, and measure the distance you can cover with a watch. When in doubt, underestimate the amount of time you have. Running with a slower group is often more convenient than keeping up with a fast group that goes long distances.
Before joining a running group, always inquire about the cost because it might vary considerably. Some running groups, such as those linked with a local running store or community center, are mostly free of charge. In addition, there is usually no commitment required, and you show up on the days you want to participate.
Some programs, however, incorporate professional coaching services. These run groups will almost certainly demand a fee. In addition, you may be required to commit to a particular training session and pay upfront or in advance. While you may not need to attend every workout, you will typically not be reimbursed if you do not attend every session.
Whatever type of group you join, there are some rules (written or unwritten) that you must observe for your safety and comfort. For example, if you prefer to run with headphones, it is not uncommon for groups to discourage this practice. Not only does it hinder social connection, but if you can't hear the instructions, traffic noises, or cues from other runners, you may endanger others' safety.
To make your experience more enjoyable, inquire about these guidelines ahead of time.
Join a Running Community Near You
Group training is not for everyone, but if you've never tried it before, it's a good idea to give it a shot. The benefits are numerous, and you may discover that you enjoy it more than you anticipated.
It may take a few tries to find a running community in Atlanta and Smyrna, GA area that is a good fit for you. And if you’re not a runner, join FullScope Sports for our weekly walking event we welcome you to participate in. So check our upcoming events regularly!