Running with a friends when at different levels


 I am very new to running (started two weeks ago), I am now running for 10 mins without having to stop and walk and am running for 3 miles, 3 times per week.  I have built this up over the past couple of weeks and have seen a massive improvement in endurance.

 I have a friend who also wants to join me running this week.  She is a little behind me and can probably only run for a minute without having to stop to walk.

If we run together, will the endurance I have built up over the past couple of week suffer as I will be running at my friends pace.  I also  have another friend who has been running for quite a while longer and can run 2 miles without stopping. 

I would love to run with both of them but feel I will be stopping my faster friends progress and pehaps my slower friend will hinder my progress.

 Should we all continue to run seperatley or is there a way we can all run together.  We all have the same aim of the Great North Run later this year.


  • i find when I run with people we tend to go slower than I would on my own. I dio think this has in parts impacted on my speed. But, I prefer it this way. It helps motivate me to go with other people, and I try and run on my own too, and push myself faster when I do.

    I've run with people who are much faster than me, what happened was he ran off ahead then waited at each turning point (joggin up and down) this coudl work but might be demotivating for the person behind if they've only just started. Another option is for you to do a bit of a run on your own, then meet your friend to continue at her pace. You'll have gone further  so your stamina shouldn't suffer and you'll have the benefit of company.

  • I like the sound of the last option.  Thanks
  • as you've only taken a couple of weeks to build up to where you are, your 'slower' friend should only take a couple of weeks to get up to where you are now. if you run with the slower friend, you're not going to lose much in those two weeks.

    similarly, your 'faster' friend is probably not that far ahead of you, so will not lose that much by running at your pace for a couple of weeks, but may get a bit frustrated running at your slower friends pace

    so it may be difficult for you all to run together at the moment, but why don't you organise it so you alternate between running with your slow friend on one run, and your faster friend on the next run ? Within a few weeks you may all be comfortable running together

  • maybe do one run a week together to start with and the others on your will all develop at different speeds and maybe the running in a few months will mean you will all be at more similar levelsimage
  • I do 1 run a week with my friend at work who is much slower and has a lot less stamina, but helps me keep my pace down (even though it's not really that fast!) and it has really helped her get a bit quicker. AND most importantly we have a laugh and a break from work.

    Occasionally it coinsides with a speed session in my program and I jog with her, run for 400m and jog back to her and jog for a bit., as it's a special session she doesn't demotivated her.

  • I'm 'resting' at the moment, but I regularly start people off running in lunch hours at work - from running 1 minute, walking 1 minute onwards. I usually do this twice a week and think of it as my 'recovery' run - then I do another two hill runs and one distance on my own, at my usual pace. I like running4rwanda's idea - maybe you could look at the slower runs this way, and the faster ones as speed sessions until you are all at a similar level. Personally, I would find it very demotivating to have someone run on ahead, jog on the spot and wait for me - but everyone's different, I guess.
  • I run with a friend who initially had a panic attack at the mere mention of the word run, but she can now run 20mins without a break.  When we 1st started out I used our sessions as a way to correct any bad habits I'd picked up running on my own, I would really focus on how my foot was landing etc.  I didnt see it as a hinderance cos I still went out for my long run on my own at the weekend and a shorter run another day so it was just a way to help my friend improve and the sense of achievement is amazing for both of us.  I am so proud of her and she is impressed with how far she's come.

    I've also started to run with Mr CS who runs faster for a shorter distance so we are trying to find a happy medium at the moment, he slows down & I speed up in the hope that he will improve on the distance side and I will improve on the speed.

    So basically what I'm trying to say is, both of your friends will help with your running in their own way and if you include some training on your own too then I cant see any reason why the slower friend would hinder your progress.

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