Finding a good running partner can be just as hard as finding a good life partner. It’s pretty amazing when you find both.
When I met my husband, Sean, I had been running for a few years and so had he. It was so nice to find someone who enjoyed the same things I did.
We met the day before the 2014 Rock n’ Roll San Diego marathon and then our first date was the day before the 2014 San Francisco Marathon. Since that time, we’ve traveled all over the world running.
We ran the SF Marathon again last year the day before our wedding, put on a 5k complete with race medals for our after-wedding party & ran the Venice (Italy) Marathon on our honeymoon so it’s sufficient to say we love running.
Our running backgrounds are quite different, but we make it work.
Sean is not only an experienced ultra runner, who will run approximately ten 100 mile races this year, he is also a streak runner, who has run 2 miles every day for the last 5.5 years. He hit 2000 days on June 1, 2016. Since running the Carlsbad Marathon as his first marathon in January 2012 he’s run 75+ races of marathon distance or higher and has a PR of 3:12 in the marathon.
I ran my first half, the Disney Princess Half Marathon, in February 2011 and I didn’t ramp up quite as quickly. I ran my first marathon, again at Walt Disney World, in January 2013. Since then I’ve run 10 marathons and 30something half marathons. I ran my first 50k in 2015 and ran my first 50 miler a few months ago. I have a PR of 4:35 in the marathon. Admittedly, I probably would have stuck to half marathons and the occasional marathon had I not met Sean, but living with an ultra runner makes you want to run long too :)
Even with our different goals, we still run together at least 3-4 times a week. It’s important to us to have that time together and fortunately for me, when you are a streak runner it’s best not to be running crazy fast everyday.
We run shorter on the weekdays, maybe 2 – 5 miles most days, and then longer on the weekends. If we aren’t racing, we will head out to the trails, where we will start together but then we run at our own pace. Sean always comes back to check on me and we continue on. It’s great practice for me to train for trail races where I will be running on my own.
When we decide on our race schedule, we try to find races where there are longer distances for him and a shorter distance for me. If it’s a road race, most of the time, I will run the half and he will run the marathon. If it’s a trail race, we do the same thing, with him running a 50 or 100 miler and I will run a 50k or now 50 miler.
This way we are able to still run the same thing, but we run our own races. Even when we run the same distance, for example at the LA Marathon, where there isn’t an option for a half marathon, we will start in our own corrals and run separately. He will wait for me at the finish and vice versa if there is a half marathon & I finish first.
We have been really good at coordinating our schedules to fit the training that we both need to achieve our goals. I know it can be hard when one runner is much faster than the other, but in our case, running together works well for us because we have made it a priority to run together.
Do you run with your partner? Or do you run separately?