Are Training Partners Always a Good Idea?

Running prescribed "easy" days too quickly can lead to fatigue and overtraining. Some training buddies will push one another too hard on the slow days—and it's often difficult to sync these easy efforts. In the absence of a partner who trains more easily than you, the easiest of planned recovery days are indeed a time to be alone.

The Shared Sacrifice of Partners

Be it a mile or a marathon, training for excellence can be arduous. Improvement in our chosen sport requires the intelligent application of frequency, intensity, duration and rest. The combination of these factors day in and out can occasionally become grueling. When training feels monotonous, positive training partners are undoubtedly most effective. Outside of simple accountability, running with others allows you to maintain focus and keep the simple childlike joy of running front and center.

There are undoubtedly times—both physiologically and psychologically—when runners should opt go it alone. Over multiple generations of distance running, however, training partners have enabled athletes to work out at a higher level with reduced exertion, be more accountable to a training regimen, maintain motivation and improve overall performance.

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