Our neighbor, Jeff, mentioned to me one time he might want to go running some time. He hasn't ran in about 4 years, and with his newer desk job, feels he is starting to pack on some pounds. I asked him to go one time, but it was too cold out. Today, however, it's a breezy 52º, so I asked again. This time he wanted to go!
It was a nice relief, as I wasn't looking forward to going. I wish I could run nearly every run with someone, but I think the pool of potential running partners is a lot smaller at my slow pace. We went on a 2-mile route from our houses. I think he was a little shocked at the slow pace at first, but we had to stop before we made it a mile.
As with all runs I've done with people, we talked the entire time about random subjects that seem to only come up while you are panting and plodding along on the road. We chatted about how hard it is to run after you haven't done it for a while, formation running in the army, our thoughts on new houses verses old houses, water skiing, and Jeff's new job. It was great! We were out there about 29 minutes– our breaks were long so it didn't surprise me.
It is very interesting to me how conversations are so effortlessly carried on while running with another person. Erin posted a little bit about this on our training blog after we ran 5 miles together, listing the various subjects we talked about. Until that run with her, I hadn't run with another person in about a year. I had certainly missed the unique companionship of running with someone– the conversation as well as not fretting over the distance as you knock off the miles. But the listing of all of the subjects we talked about along with today's talking has really made me wonder more about why the act of running causes such a positive stir in our conversation skills. Is it the fact that there is nothing else to do except move forward? There are no other distractions? Maybe the exercise clears our heads making our thoughts much more interesting? You usually even take turns in the conversation, each weighing in on the subject. (That could be because both people need a break for breathing!) And it is often in a story-telling style. I don't know what it is about running that brings this out in us, but I truly enjoy the peace and refreshment it brings.