courir en couple

Quickly or slowly: let's run together!


Who sets the pace?

The answer seems obvious. The slower runners must choose the pace that suits them. And nothing – definitely not the temptation to increase the pace of your running companions – must force them to make too great an effort.  You don't have to run in a group. Whether there are just two of you or 100, the etiquette remains the same.

There are two priorities, which should never be forgotten:

- Agree on the programme for the session in advance in order to avoid any misunderstandings or stressful situations. The faster runners must immediately agree to run at the pace of the slower runners. Runners must never make accelerations which would disrupt the pace.

- Never leave a runner behind. This is particularly true when some runners may be unfamiliar with the route. Although it is okay to form groups (by level of ability), a 'grupetto' must always organise itself so that any runners faced with a problem or injury do not find themselves in a difficult situation.


You run, I pedal (and vice versa)

This is one of the smartest alternatives when running with runners of different levels of ability. One person runs while the other pedals (a formula which can be applied to a couple, family, as well as among friends). Advantages: The faster runner can run at his own pace while the other follows by bike. The faster runner then recovers calmly while the slower runner takes over the running duties.

The 'bike and run' has now become a competitive sport and some pairs are particularly competitive. There is a more recreational version of this discipline which encourages a real harmony between sportsmen of very different levels of ability, even allowing the more able member of the couple or group to perform interval training over relatively long sessions. For example, 3×10 minutes with 5 minutes of recovery time on the bike.


Let's cross over!

Training on routes, with a relatively long loop (no longer than two or three kilometres) makes it easier for runners of different levels of ability, who do not wish to lose sight of each other for too long, to run together. The idea is simple: run in the opposite direction in order to meet up on regular basis. A simple sign with the hand, a smile or a look is enough to form a real bond.

The issue of safety rightly preoccupies many women who run on a regular basis or not. Running by oneself can generate a form of stress and discourage some people from training under certain conditions. This is why it's necessary to find a way of staying in regular contact with other athletes…


And in the end…

You don't gain anything by staying in your own corner! Running is an individual sport, aided by the group experience. And never mind if you have to live with the habits of some and tolerate the mood swings of those who are more irritable: After all, we all have our own very personal opinion about training and how to deal with it.

You need to have a good sense of humour and be tolerant; Listen to what your body is telling you, as well as other people. And in the end, delight in running for miles together. A shake of the hand and an embrace: nothing is better than such a moment of friendship in sports


Overcoming differences in levels of ability: some imagination and cunning is required in order run together more effectively. The aim is to enjoy running without boundaries or prejudice. Experience the community spirit!