Training solo vs. in a group (Read 118 times)

    Hey everyone,


    I'm writing up a blog post about the benefits of training in a group versus by yourself (The end conclusion is to find a healthy balance between the two and to also experiment and find what works best for yourself). While I have my own thoughts about this topic, I'd love to get some input from the community here. So, what do you define as the top benefits of these two different training philosophies? Go...

      Runners run.


        I prefer solo tho haven’t tried a group. I don’t want to socialize nor want to feel pressured to keep up or be polite and slow down for someone I like. At the same time I do like seeing other runners out  bc it forces me to push harder/motivates me to keep going/pretend to look tough.


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            Caffeine-fueled Runner

              The vast majority of my training since 2013 has been solo,  I've gone and run with a group of friends and I find that the group tends to do something other than what I'm specifically trying to accomplish on a given run.  And I've learned, over time, what the specific runs are trying to build or accomplish for race day.  Losing a day or two of training time to group dynamics as opposed to solo running for specific training goals probably won't hurt much in the long run.  But I've found very few people who are willing, for example, to go out in the heat of the day and do interval repeats at nearly full output.  They are fine at an easy conversational pace (but prefer early in the day)


              I've found that the race, itself, tends to be a solo event and in those smaller marathons where the field gets spread out beyond 10 to 12 miles, the ability to manage one's experience and monitor one's body under solo conditions is a real benefit.  If you've practiced it in training, you know what you are dealing with.  I guess not tuning into your body's signals and the suffering you are experiencing in a group run could be a good thing because you are distracted.  But in my most satisfying marathons, when the legs start to feel tired as I am hammering over the last 10K, and particularly the last 5K, having the sense of "I know this sensation" because I was tuned into it during training and not having the experience diluted as part of a group run is a powerful drive at the end of the race.


              I've never done larger group runs where you might be able to find a group running your pace, but I do have friends that will only run with others or groups (or they just don't run at all) as part of a social spirit in running and that's fine for general fitness and maybe to "survive" a marathon or half-marathon.  I, however, like to do more than just survive it.

              PR's--- 5K  24:11,   10K  49:40,   10-Mile  1:26:02,  HM  1:56:03,   Marathon  4:16:17

              Maniac #11112, Fanatic #14276, Double Agent #2335

              Still kicking

                I'm a loner in training, and go absolutely solo. I'm not interesting in making someone else modify their pace/distance for me, and I have no desire to modify my pace/distance for someone else. I also like to fart and burp and spit and shoot snot and pee in the bushes and grunt and cuss a lot. Not so easy in a group.

                I'm also on Athlinks and Strava

                  I've always pretty much done the solo thing.... post college.


                  I do miss "track practice" tho.


                  seems many of the pros these days are training in groups....


                  my schedule is all over the place, but I would like to start trying to incorporate group runs/workouts in the future.


                  I may start attending a speed session track workout group, although part of me things I need more miles vs. speed work., maybe both.

                  300m- 37 sec.


                  I'm out of ideas

                    For intervals and long runs I prefer running with a group.  With intervals runners can take turns leading the group to hit pace, and having others to keep pace with helps.  Of course this only works if the group are relatively evenly fit.  With long runs, especially since I don't listen to music or podcasts or use headphones in any way, having conversation helps the run go faster and helps stave off boredom.

                    For easy runs, recovery runs, and even tempo runs, I prefer solo because I allow perceived exertion, how I feel, and personal whim to determine pace, length, and course.

                    2019 Races:

                          6/29/19 - Loopy Bunny 6-Hour

                          7/27/19 - Endless Summer 6-Hour

                          8/17/19 - Lean Horse 30M

                          9/21/19 - NC24


                    Old , Ugly and slow

                      I always run alone

                      first race sept 1977 last race sept 2007


                      2019  goals   1000  miles  , 190 pounds , deadlift 400 touch my toes


                        Put me down for Solo.  I always run alone.  Everyone I know hates running, lol.  I live in a small town, and I can drive 30 minutes to near by town, and join their group, or I can be 30 minutes into my run.

                        "There's no such thing as bad weather, just soft people." - Bill Bowerman