There are plenty of benefits to exercising with a buddy, but sometimes it's better to sweat it out alone. Here are some reasons why you'll want to lace up your sneaks and hit the trail or treadmill alone.
- A better workout: Running alone means you get to make all the decisions about when, where, how fast, and how long to run. This is great if you're training for a race and need to do speed work or cover a certain distance within a specific time frame.
- Tunes: Listening to music is one of the most effective ways to put a little pep in your step, beat boredom, and keep you going longer, but you can't exactly slip on headphones while running with a buddy — that'd be pretty rude.
- Me time: Many people use exercise as a way to reduce stress, to think, or to meditate. It's much harder to do this when your buddy is blabbing in your ear.
- No missed workouts: It's great to be able to rely on only yourself for workout motivation, because if you always run with someone else and they call to bail on you, you're more likely to skip as well. You also don't have to worry about your running buddy calling you up to persuade you to hit happy hour instead of your postwork run.
- Less risk for injury: When you're running with a friend, it's tough not to be a little competitive. Without even knowing it, you might run a little faster or longer than you would on your own, and pushing yourself too much increases your risk of getting hurt.