Maybe because I'm familiar with the faces of members that come into the gym that's made me a bolder person in treadmill land? Or members aren't afraid to approach me when they are working out because at some point they've seen me working? All that I'm saying is I might have a slight advantage over the "Average Joe" in doing what I'm about to suggest.
I'm getting ahead of my self though.
Do you realize you're in an exclusive group? If you are reading this and have a blog of your own...you're a "running blogger." Of the thousands/hundreds/handful that enter races...the majority of them don't go home and write about it. They upload a photo on Facebook (on a good day) and that's it. Through blogging I've connected with people that I absolutely WOULD NOT have brushed toes with at any race. Even if we lived in the same area we just do not have similar paces. And it's AWESOME.
I've touched on this before, but if you ever have to do a run on a gym treadmill....
there's a whole nother community just WAITING for you to tap into it. True there are some people that you probably won't learn much from...the magazine readers, the people that don't bother with workout clothes they are going so slowly on the treadmill, or that girl that drinks from a 2 liter bottle of soda while working out.
However, after a few months of working at the gym, I learned that some of the runners in treadmill land actually know each other. They say "hi" in passing...and catch up on races they each are training for. The gym I go to now is probably the 5th I've gone to regularly in the course of my life....and the first where I've taken the time to get to know people around me. More than likely if you work out at the same time, you're going to see the same people. And more than likely, even if you like to jam out to iTunes or stay in a "private zone" talking to someone for half a mile or mile will make your run go by a LOT faster. Even knowing the person next to you is reason to keep going if you want to quit. A "we're in this together" mentality that you only get with a running buddy.
I'm not sure how many treadmill buddies I have, but for sure four.
- Buddy 1: A co-worker
- Buddy 2: A guy who has run marathons but now sticks to halvsies.
- Buddy 3: A girl who has her sites set on Boston. She's run a sub-four hour marathon, but currently has a few overuse injuries (runner's knee and ITBS) and is not training to BQ this year.
- Buddy 4: A recovering smoker who now runs regularly.
A lot of people loatheeee the dreadmill, but if you are forced to take your workout inside to a gym...I'd say it's worth it to strike up conversation with anyone who looks like they might be training for a race. Or getting back into working out. I do a lot of runs at the gym. If I'm there 4 days a week...even being able to run next to someone I know ONE of those times switches things up. It's nice because it's not a set meeting time, just a pleasant surprise. And pace doesn't matter whatsoever.
The other night I had planned on doing a 2 mile run. I saw Buddy 4 who was in the middle of a 5 mile run. He said "I'm dying right now"..and I told him I'd run 3 miles, since we'd finish about the same time. We talked for about a mile.
Simple right? Really beneficial. And not something to be scared of. Unlike this commercial.