Groups of geese fly over my house all the time, honking and dropping bombs in my yard. My poor dog doesn’t know what to make of them. She hears them cackling, tilts her head to one side and looks up at them in wonder. If I could read her mind I think she would be saying, “I wish I could fly.”
That’s how dogs think. They want to be part of a pack, a community of like-minded beings that have the same goals and ideals. Or maybe my dog just want’s to eat those geese.
Like the geese that fly together in perfect formation and the pack of dogs the roam the streets, we as humans need to be a part of a community as well. The desire to be a part of a community is built into our being. It’s natural.
Runners need to be a part of a community also. It’s not always about competing as an individual. We need a support group, a community of other runners that have the same goals. Here are three advantages of being a part of a running community:
1. Runners push each other. It’s not easy to motivate ourselves. We need other runners to hold us accountable, to hold our feet to the fire. We know what each other are capable of and since we have the same goals, we know how to get there.
2. We see each others flaws. The same way we can know each others strengths, we also know each other’s weak spots. Your fellow runners won’t force you to do something you are not capable of because doing so could lead to injury or worse. At the same time, it’s easy for runners to correct errors because we have been there and we know how to make improvements.
3. We compete together. You’ll see my flock in the picture above. We’ve been through a lot together. We’ve logged hundreds of miles, made great memories and built strong friendships along the way. There is nothing better than accomplishing a goal as a group. Individual goals are great but sharing a piece of your accomplishments with others makes it more fulfilling and meaningful.
What do you think? Are you a part of a running community or do you prefer to fly solo?