The highs and lows of married runners

When I first started running outside properly, I was a complete novice. I didn’t understand pacing, stretching, strength training…anything really. I just ran five miles three times a week.

It wasn’t until I did my first race (Reading half marathon last year) and joined a running club that I understood more and my love affair truly exploded. Ben, however, couldn’t understand it. Getting him to go for a walk at the weekend was hard enough (to be fair, it still is…). Exercise and Ben just weren’t a happy couple. He was great though in that he listened to me go on and on about how my runs went, my goals and annoyances.

Then suddenly he wanted to do my next race with me (Marwell 10k last year). I had worn him down finally! Well, I think it was more that he loved the buzz of watching me run a race and wanted in on the action. After a couple of injury bumps in the road, he got there and completed it in a very respectable time.

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Now over a year later he’s part of the running club, doing every race he can, with two marathons under his (hydration) belt.

Long gone are the days when we would run together and I would leave him behind and have to loop back to ‘pick him up’ as he stopped to walk. I remember pacing him at parkrun to keep running at 8.15min/miles, which he struggled so much with. Today? That’s an easy pace for him! I couldn’t be more proud.

So today we’re both as crazy about running as each other, and there are good and bad things that come with this. I thought I’d do a light-hearted post on the highs and lows of a running couple:

High: You both ‘get it’. You don’t have to explain things. You both love it and don’t have to justify doing odd things – like getting up ridiculously early at the weekend or travelling miles for a race.

Low: Weekends can be consumed by running. Parkrun, recovery, pre-race prep, race, recovery. That’s a lot of time to be just focused on running. It’s great if your family can join and then you can hit two birds with one stone, but that’s not always the case.

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High: You’re both fit. Zombie attack? Pah! No problemo. Survival of the fittest my friends.

Low: Injuries. If one of you is injured and the other one isn’t, then it can be quite tough to watch them skip merrily out the door while you mournfully get the frozen veg out of the freezer. If both of you are injured? Jesus, stay away at all costs. The perpetuation of misery, despair, grumpiness and general ‘dark and shadiness’ is just unbearable for any external party.

High: You can share advice and knowledge. It could be what helped them in a race or a certain interval session that they ‘enjoyed’. This can be really helpful when you’re stuck for motivation or need some help.

Low: The pair of you are boring as hell to non-runners. Unsuspecting friends asking what you’ll get up to this weekend can trigger long responses about races, mileage, paces, niggles…Suddenly people stop inviting you over for dinner.

High: You gain like-minded friends that you can both go out with and have those supposedly boring conversations about running. They get it too! You can all be boring together.

Low: Washing. So much bloody washing.

High: Both of you wanting an early night when it’s race day the next day. There’s nothing worse than your other half not having to get up early when you have to go for a run/race 😉

Low: You get through a lot of food. Pre-race food and post-race cake extravaganzas.

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High: A great race shared with your best friend? Priceless.Cheddar Gorge half marathon

What do you enjoy doing with your other half? Doesn’t have to bit fitness related.

Would you enjoy working out with your partner or friends?

How do you support your partner/friends obsession hobby?

24 thoughts on “The highs and lows of married runners

  1. Anna! I just can’t believe you have only really been running for just over a year. I honestly thought you were a seasoned professional !!! I’m in shock. It is brilliant that you and Ben run together and enjoy the sport together. If I were to go for a run with him indoors he’d leave me by 200m up the road and I’d have to eat his dust… You are both an inspiration to me xx

    • Well I’ve been running races for a year, but I was probably running outside for maybe a year before that? But like I said, with no focus or direction. Just keeping fit really without any clue what I was doing. Just plodding the same route three times a week with no clue on pacing.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…The highs and lows of married runnersMy Profile

  2. I love this!! Ever since our last race, Fabio hasn’t put on his running shoes ONE TIME and it really makes me sad. I miss running with him! I still go running solo all the time but it’s not as nice as when we run together. I’m hoping that when we sign up for our next race (probably not until this fall) he’ll decide to join me again 🙂
    Chelsea @ Chelsea Eats Treats recently posted…Thursdays are for Thinking out LoudMy Profile

  3. I can’t believe you guys have been running for such a short amount of time! You are both so speedy and getting faster too! Not sure where I am going wrong!
    Andy doesn’t really like running much, he sees it more of a necessary evil, but also a way to get me to go away for a weekend, (for a race). He also likes running with me but I do sometimes find it hard as he runs just a touch too fast for me so I can get a bit depressed with how slow I am.
    And I agree over the washing! So much!
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted…Working out in fancy clothesMy Profile

    • You’re not going wrong at all!!! You’re doing perfectly fine.
      Haha yes running is a good reason to go somewhere nice for the weekend.
      It’s hard because men will naturally be faster because it’s, well, biology. So I imagine Ben might overtake me soon. It’s great but I will miss pacing him!
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…The highs and lows of married runnersMy Profile

  4. When did you first start running then? I always assumed you’d been running forever!
    And I thought I was a relative newbie to the running community! Dan actually persuaded me to start running in 2010 and we trained for a 10k together. We ran 10k four nights a week (starting off run/walking) for 6 weeks and played badminton twice each week. On the day of the 10k race we were aiming for we ran the whole way together (although I’m sure Dan could have zoomed off without me!) and completed it in 59m 57s. Then I gave up running until 2011 when I saw a beginners course at my now club advertised.
    I love that Ben is now as hooked as you are to running! Dan still prefers footy, but I’m enjoying his recent parkrun addiction at the moment. Makes me feel less guilty for jumping out of bed early on a Saturday morning!
    Mary recently posted…Baby food and random sandwichesMy Profile

    • I started running outside (like 5 miles three times a week with no idea what I was doing, not part of a club or racing) probably two years ago. Then last year I properly got into it with racing and being part of the club and actually knowing what I was doing.
      It is really nice to do parkrun together and do lots of running and racing together. Ben doesn’t do any other sports so I think this could be why he’s so focused, and now he’s been sucked into the addiction haha.
      AnnaTheApple recently posted…The highs and lows of married runnersMy Profile

  5. I think it’s fab that you both share that passion! James and I couldn’t be more different in that respect, but for us I think that’s one of the reasons our relationship works so well. He was a great supporter when I was running races bless him, and I always go along to gigs and music festivals. What we’ve found is that although we don’t share the same topic of passion, we both love that we have that passion for something!

  6. Great post, I really relate to all of this especially the endless washing!
    I love that my husband is as obsessed with running as me, although it was the same for us, it took him a while to get in to it after I started running.
    Lucy recently posted…Update on Triathlon TrainingMy Profile

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