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  • Writer's pictureMary Brooking

Why run in a group?

"Group Therapy: Five reasons why running with others is great for your health & happiness". I always enjoy reading Cory Wharton-Malcolm's articles but the most recent one really resonated with me. Like Cory I ran alone, and loved it, but have come to realise how many benefits there are to  running with others.

And as he says "I understand that going to a club or group for the first time can be daunting, but think about it this way: you're only ever the first-timer once. Then you get to reap all the benefits and experience all of the joy."

Here are his, and my, reasons why running with others is so beneficial:

 - It's more fun! In a group run there's entertainment & inspiration, shared jokes, stories & lives.

- It spurs you on. It's easier to build fitness as you are challenged by others; pushed to go a bit faster and do more than you may think at the beginning is possible. Other people are also a great distraction from an over-focus on time, pace & distance as your concentration becomes one instead of keeping up with the conversation or the group.

- Become part of a community and experience the benefits of a feeling of belonging

- You're accountable: it's the friends who are waiting for you, the people you don't want to let down that gets you out of the front door some days

- You may feel safer: being with others can help you feel safer if you are running in the dark, or an area you don't know well. If you get lost or injured there is someone there to help.

There are so many opportunities to run with others; with a buddy, joining a running club or group running sessions or participating in parkruns, hopefully it can be part of your running in 2024.

Cory Wharton-Malcolm's book All You Need is Rhythm and Grit: How to run now, for health, joy and a body that loves you back is released next week and is on my reading list!

"Group Therapy: Five reasons why running with others is great for your health & happiness" Cory Wharton-Malcolm January 2024 Runner's World.

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