running & relationship tips

Where did the week go? Don’t care. It’s Friday!DSC03221A mattress for you:DSC03220And a low, tight bun! Victory!DSC03219What was supposed to be a five-mile run turned into a seven-mile run because I got lost. Thank you to all the strangers who stopped and help point me back in the right direction.DSC03222

Where were all the DC runners last night, you ask?

Escaping the heat and partying here, of course.DSC03211Ireland’s Four Courts hosted us for another superb happy hour. Drinks, chicken fingers, and lots of training talk. I wouldn’t have it any other way.DSC03216Even though Anthony isn’t running marathons anymore, he still loves to come chat with all the crazy marathoners, half-marathoners, and ultrarunners that flock to the DC Road Runners club.DSC03215Speaking of Anthony. Because it’s Friday and we all love a good batch of oversharing on the internet, let’s talk about running and relationships. I’ve written a bit about this before, but running has played a notable role in our relationship — good and bad! It’s one of the hobbies we first shared together and has taught us some big lessons.

There are a lot of good things about being in a relationship and being a marathon runner. First, if your partner is a runner, you have a training buddy. DSC02535Anthony’s always been a runner — Β sometimes a marathoner, more recently a casual five-miler — which means that he’s usually up to join me for 2-20 miles. Second, you have a race day fan.Β DSC01519Third, you have training support. Anthony encourages me to go out for my runs and helps me stay cool about training, overtraining, dealing with injuries, failures, etc. He’s always ready to listen to me list off each split time for a track workout or help me analyze each moment of a race or allow me to eat all of the bread, coffee, and gatorade in his apartment.P1000964

But of course, there are some struggles too. The biggest being time! Making time to run a ton of miles, working a 9-6 job, and being in a relationship can be difficult. Over the years we’ve learned a couple tricks to help best juggle our schedules, running, and our relationship:

  • Run in the morning. Getting your workout over and done with first thing leaves the rest of your day free. That way, if a dinner date is on the schedule, or we just want to hang out together after a long day, there’s nothing interfering with our time together.
  • Add some routine to your weekends. I’ve been doing long runs on Saturdays since the day Anthony and I met — which means that there’s really never any question about what I’m doing Saturday morning. Anthony also joined a rugby league that meets on Saturday morning, so we’re both on the same page when it comes to planning our weekends. We’re cool with calling it early on Friday night, and waking up to a nice 6 a.m. alarm the next day.
  • Turn off the TV. When we are home together and sit down for dinner, we usually keep the TV off and have an actual conversation. It’s magical. Of course this rule can be bent on Mondays because that’s when The Bachelorette is on.
  • Train together. Like I noted, it’s a beautiful thing when the person you love and the hobby you love come together into a single event.
  • Skip or reschedule a workout. In the end, running will never love me back like Anthony does. And running isn’t a person. So, at times, it’s best to take a break from your running relationship and make time for your real relationship instead.

And THAT is all of the oversharing I have for you today. Have a great one!

  • What’s your secret to balancing training and a relationship?
  • How many “lost miles” have you ever racked up on a run? (I think mine was 7 extra miles?
  • What are you MOST looking forward to this weekend?

Of interest:

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24 comments

  1. Runner Girl Eats

    Matt has always been a casual runner and is the one that first got me into it so I loveee that we share that. We do our weekend runs together and are usually on our own during the week but we both understand the ‘need’ to run. And I agree, the relationship is wayyyy more important than training. Sometimes a run needs to be skipped for a date night πŸ™‚

  2. My husband was not really a “runner” until we started dating. I got him to join a few races with me and now he’s training for his first marathon! I haven’t done any long runs with him yet, as I’m only doing a half this fall and waiting for the summer heat to go away before I start training. But it’s nice having a running partner! I can’t wait until the fall, my favorite time to run with friends along Kelly Drive in Philly πŸ™‚

  3. I wish my boyfriend was a runner! It makes the whole balancing thing so tricky. But thankfully he’s at least supportive of my running. Sometimes he will bike next to me on long runs! He’ll hold my water and be there for moral support (aka tell me to keep my butt moving). The hardest part for me is going to be at 9 when he stays up until 12. That means there are very few hours of the day we can hang out. I wish he could be my marathon training buddy though! It would make the long runs play major double duty: log the training run and spend time together.

  4. This is a random question unrelated to running/relationships, haha, but I recently bought a pair of Brooks Pure Connects (I have a friend who runs in them and loves them, plus I noticed you also recommend them) and went running in them for the first time this past Tuesday. I loved running in them; there wasn’t as much pressure on my knees and my heel strike seemed to diminish significantly. I covered about ten miles and the moment I stopped my calves felt like they were on fire. I know I should’ve started with a shorter distance, but I was just so excited! My calves feel mostly fine now, though one muscle in my right calf is still really sensitive. I’ve been biking the past few days to let my calves recover. All of this said, how long did it take you to transition from a traditional running shoe to a more minimalist shoe? How did you go about doing it successfully? Thanks.

    • um, i do have a relationship with my pureconnects… i love them *almost* as much as anthony! glad they are working out for you too, minus some initial shocks!

      i think i began transitioning to minimal shoes around 2009, when i bought my first pair of mizuno wave riders which, at the time, were considered pretty light/neutral. before that, i’d been running in nike pegasus (classic) and some random pumas. i think i wore wave riders for a couple years, then jumped to saucony kinvaras, which are even lighter. i loved them. next up were the pure connects, which i think are about equal to the kinvaras in term of minimalism. i have dabbled in nike (nike lunarglide? and nike free) but never liked them — they’re light, but wide and have no support in my opinion. but i don’t know, it totally depends on what your foot is like and what you prefer! i personally always like light, narrow, and cute shoes πŸ™‚ if you’re experiencing pain with the pureconnects, i’d recommend rotating stability shoes into your routine so that your legs/feet can recover in between your minimalist runs. and remember, minimalist isn’t necessarily for everyone you know? i know lots of awesome runners who swear by their ultra-cushioned shoes.

  5. This is a great list! I am a Sunday AM long run gal and I also loved Saturday AM yoga classes. When we got Sasha her training classes took over my yoga spot and I chose to join in on that instead of yoga. The boy really likes to sleep in on the weekends and I like running by my place so for the most part I will sleep at home the night before my long runs / I will slip out super early and not wake him up!

  6. Eat Pray Run, DC

    Turn off the TV is a good one. I often find when my BF is over, we’re just watching tv and not talking. I’ve started turning the TV off and just putting on music in the background. Makes a big difference!

  7. Skip or reschedule a workout. In the end, running will never love me back like Anthony does. And running isn’t a person. <– that's my favorite one. It's not like you should do this all the time, but every once in a while it is important and things come up where you need to put the other person ahead of your training.

  8. Love this post! Not currently in a relationship ((I think I am kind of picky…oops??)) but if you know of anyone send him my way! haha these are great tips though and very honest, which i appreciate so so much!

    I got lost out on a run with my dad in Banff, Canada. Beautiful… but scary. I’m going to say our 5 miler turned into a 12 miler?? I was 15 years old. My mom was furious at us πŸ™‚

  9. I love the — running will never love me back!!!!!!!! Perfect. I try to be really careful with that with Kevin. It’s fun that he’s ALMOST as into CrossFit as I am… he was always a much more casual runner than me so that a little difficult (I was annoyingly peppy!!)

    • haha, it’s better to be an annoyingly peppy wife than an annoyingly mean one, right? that’s great that you guys do crossfit together… i miss doing that with anthony even though i didn’t really love crossfit

  10. This is wonderful! My husband isn’t a runner at all and has no interest in running, but will do short runs with me. I loved all of your tips. I think getting your run in early is key. πŸ™‚ Thank you!

  11. hi Mary – i’m also a DC Road Runner. i found your blog thru the ActiveLifeDC article. it was a great plug for the club! i thought it was funny that i was checking out your site and there i was in your DCRRC happy hour photo! thanks for making me look good on the internet! see you soon around the DCRRC events!

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