Life's little adventures, accompanied by a running watch

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Camaraderie

Once upon a time, there was a runner-girl who frequently ran by my house.  I watched her run by and marveled at how she made running look so easy … so effortless.  Driving through town, I would see runner-girl on many different roads, putting in lots of miles in that effortless manner.  And she looked so damn good while doing it, dressed in her coordinated, “fast” running clothes.  I wanted to be her.  And because that’s impossible, I named her instead.  Yep, I named runner-girl:  Stacey

My close running friends know this story and they totally get it.  Why?  Because we each have our own Stacey in our lives – you know, someone who we’d like to be or at least be like.  After naming Stacey, I felt like I had this new “comrade” who could teach me how to run with ease.  Ultimately, she would end up teaching me without lecture or any formal training plan; she would teach me through demonstration.  She showed me that all it takes is to get out there and run;  I was a good student and started to run.

Back in 2005, Scott was out running one day and, after seeing a couple of guys running down our street on a regular basis, joined them on their run.  That moment molded a new friendship with Martyn and Andy that continues today.  Recently, Ron joined the group.  Just as Scott had done, Ron also noticed the regular routine of the guys’ running schedule and routes.  One Sunday, Ron was parked outside of Martyn’s house – waiting for them.  Now there were 4.

While running a local 10 mile race in 2003 with friends, I heard a voice behind us yell, “Hey, what pace are you girls running at?”.  I answered, and that’s when Meaghan entered the picture.  She and I paired up, chatting as we ran, and quickly discovered we were both using this race as a springboard for the same marathon:  Vermont City.  What followed was a shared training schedule, where we ran almost all of our long runs together.  Even better, a friendship blossomed and 7 years later, we’re still going strong.

Camaraderie is defined as:  comradeship; good-fellowship.   Running offers a camaraderie I never knew could exist and am so grateful to have discovered.  Running has brought me so many new friends and so many great experiences that I cannot imagine life without it.  And over this past month, I entered the blogging world and found a whole new camaraderie with you that I can’t wait to foster!  

It’s been over a decade of stalking observing Stacey.   I’ve never spoken to her, aside from the standard runner’s wave as we pass each other running on the road.  And I’m no longer the student, but a fellow runner – comrade.  Camaraderie can exist even between people who have never met.  No words or explanation needed.  A simple runner’s wave says it all.


5 comments:

  1. This is a great post, Lisa! And, so true. My next door neighbor and I have become great friends because of running. We were both running on our own for a while and then her husband said "hey, you guys should start running together!" DUH! I'm not sure what took us so long. I've come to really depend on our long runs together and have felt quite lost without them while I've been sidelined. Being on a run together is such a great way to foster a friendship--there are no distractions. Come to think of it, I should start going on runs with my hubs--that poor guys rarely gets an undivided moment. I love what you said too about the camaraderie of a simple wave to another runner. It's like speaking 100 words with that one wave sometimes!

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  2. Thanks Lisa! I think its great to run with our husbands. Just a great way to connect differently with the person closest to you. We run together occasionally and I love those moments :) Who's a better comrade than our husbands?

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  3. I so understand what you mean - I feel a bond with some other runners I regularly pass though I don't know them beyond "the wave." I would love to find a running buddy - hopefully that will come in time :)

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  4. Whoa!! My first shout-out.. Great post Lis - camaraderie (as you know) is my favorite thing about running..

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