Tips for Running With Your Significant Other

by Lauren Zimmer

So you want your spouse to run with you?  If you are an avid runner such as myself, running with someone who is not of the same ability (especially if this person is your significant other), can be a difficult task.  Here are some tips on how to run with your spouse without killing each other.

1.  Be patient
Chances are you and your spouse do not run at the same pace.  If you are the quicker of the two, periodically check back with the other just to make sure they are okay.  It’s as easy as turning your head around or jogging back to them.  At least by doing the latter, you will be getting more mileage by “checking up” on your spouse.
2.  Pack Your Own Stuff
You may run with a water bottle to stay hydrated, carry house or car keys, or even pepper spray to stay safe.  It’s not fair to make your spouse carry all of your gear just because he or she has the pockets.  Take along only the necessities you can easily carry yourself.  You are not going to a picnic.
3.  Know the Rules of the Road
Lets face it, there are rules wherever you go, whether that be running on a sidewalk, track or even in a public park.  Learning the rules saves the embarrassment later. You may be asked to run on a specific path, single file, or only at certain times of the day.  If you know the rules of your route ahead of time, there will be less risk for arguments later.
4.  Save the Relationship Talk for Home
So it’s a beautiful sunny day.  Isn’t it the perfect time to have that serious relationship talk as you both are huffing and puffing up that hill?  Absolutely not! Nothing is more annoying than a serious talk while you are trying to focus on your workout.  A heads up about a rock on the path or a suspicious looking dog is ok. Otherwise, keep it short.
5.  Motivate Each other
One cool thing about running with your spouse is that you have someone right there to motivate you to get up and go when you feel like doing nothing.  Just remember to keep your motivation positive.  Nobody wants to run with a drill sergeant.
6.  You’re Not in High School Anymore
Don’t mistake your spouse for your high school arch-rival.  Chances are, you aren’t evenly matched and it’s not fun when you are always the one having to play catch up.  So take it easy and think twice when you have the urge to say “let’s race”.
7.  No Complaining Allowed
Ok, so you’ve convinced your spouse to come with you on a run. Don’t start complaining if they aren’t running fast enough or if the rain is ruining your hair. YOU were the one who wanted a running partner.  If you are a habitual complainer, maybe you should swap your spouse out for your dog. Keep the grumbling to yourself.

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