The Bright Side

In the lowest moments of this training cycle, I wondered how I’d find the motivation to toe the start line, to even get myself there. But as I’ve come out of the darkness, I’ve been illuminated with amazing training cycles, not my own, but of friends who are also running this race.

My husband travels A TON and for this cycle, he’s been home for the longest stretch for a training cycle ever. Because of consistent training, he’s been nailing his tempos and long runs and I’m super, super excited for what St. George will bring for him.

My friend Jenna, who I met through my coach, is also running St. George to Boston Qualify. Man has it been inspiring to see her run. I have zero doubts she’s going to ring that BQ bell.

And my training buddy, Ashley, has just been throwing down her runs. Every time I see her updates on her Insta, I get super pumped. She’s also training to BQ, and I really feel like she’s got a shot.

BQ training buddy ❤ #makeithappen

I’ve known Ashley for quite some time; in fact, she was one of the first runners I met from my run club. It was at track a few years ago that I saw her making the rounds and she just cruised by me. Her form was amazing and she made it look so easy. I thought to myself then, “I want to run with her.”

Since then, I’ve been able to run with her quite often and when I decided to go for a Boston Qualifier, I convinced her to go for it too. We decided on a race and said we’d train as much as we could together. A few of our run club members thought for sure we’d get tired of hanging out or let our competitiveness drive us apart, but nope, six months later we are going strong–still rooting for each other.

I’ve been lucky to have such supportive friends to train with. Last year for NYC Marathon, my friend Jen was often at my side cheering me on. This year Ashley has lent her shoulder quite a few times when I struggled with a workout  (or two or three).

I’m reminded often that running is not a solo sport. It can be, but if your running friends are your family, much like mine are, you become a part of their journey. You become a supporter of their goal. You want to celebrate their success.

And I want a front row ticket for that ❤

–Do you have running friends that are like family?

–Do you find joy in other people’s success? 

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24 responses

  1. My running friends ARE my family. I love my family, but they won’t come to visit me or spend much time with me, sadly. I graduated college, got married, bought a beautiful home in Charleston, but I can never please my parents or meet their expectations, sadly.

    I’m running the Kiawah Half Marathon in December and I have two friends running the full… one is running her first and one is going for a BQ. I’m so excited to finish my race, get recovered, then see them crush theirs. Running this year has been tough. I have only had maybe 2 races I’m proud of all year, but at least my friends and training partners I run with have done well. I feel like supporting others, we all contribute to their success… no one does it alone… so it’s worth celebrating with a friend BQs, PRs, runs first half or full marathon, etc.

  2. Yes! Running friends are great. Sometimes we talk about the most ridiculous things, but sometimes we dive into life. Runners are there for each other. Training with them is amazing too. I’ve even been helping runners find their speed this year and I love so much when they are happy about a run or break through a barrier into a new level of speed. Their joy is my joy and their success is my success.

  3. I’ve been lucky to have supportive friends around me (even my non-running friends are supportive – they don’t understand, but they love me and support what I do). I don’t normally run with people because I just happen to like running by myself.

    I’m thrilled to death when my friends make their goals. When I was suffering the last few miles of Steamtown, the only thing I could think was that I had to make it to the end in order to find out whether Nell BQ’ed. Running to see her was the only way I could make it (yes, she did BQ).

  4. I totally missed that your husband was training for St. George too. I can’t wait to virtually cheer you both on! Running friends are amazing. Having people to share in the ups and downs of training and racing, and who really can understand all the feelings that go along with it, makes it so much better. My running friends are what I miss most about my lack of running this year.

  5. I love it when my friends are crushing it, and I hope that they feel the same way for me. There is nothing like watching a friend accomplish a goal, though I will admit, sure, I can get a bit wistful as well! It can be hard when you are having a hard time to celebrate other’s victories, but that just goes to show that you are an awesome human being, Helly. And don’t give up on yourself yet…

  6. I’m actually a little sad because I don’t have any running buddies, I mean serious running buddies, other than the bf who BQed last fall (and he only ran 5ks before we met!). I used to be part of the big triathlon teams here in Boston, and I also had a blog for years, so I had triathlon/running buddies IRL and through the internets (some of who I met IRL too!). After I stopped doing triathlons, shut down my blog and started to concentrate solely on running, I didn’t join a club or find a community. I think my non-running friends are pretty bored of hearing about all my runs by now! I love reading blogs of runners who I can relate to, and that means YOU! I have loved following your training and will be cheering you on from Boston! Get it girl!!!!!

  7. I know I’m partial but I think runners are the best kind of people to surround yourself with. Unfortunately at this point in my life I don’t have any running friends that live near me now (they’ve moved away). I love reading blogs like yours, though, and cheering on others.

  8. It is so refreshing to see women lifting each other up. This is why I adore you and your kind heart. It takes a strong (and kind) woman to be excited for others despite a bad training cycle. A positive attitude about yourself and others is a powerful tool to have during a big race like a marathon. You know my theory, regardless of how bad a training cycle was, you just never know what will happen out there. So keep that positivity pumping!

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