Good Day my lovely Princes and Princesses!
Today my post is tackling what can be a bit of a sticky subject–when you and a friend/family member sign up for a race together–do you run the entire race together?
My opinion on this is very, VERY situational and I think it needs to be discussed with your co-racer prior to signing up. I also think that you need to both take into consideration your training, race goals, pace, etc into consideration leading up to the race.
Generally speaking I believe it’s best to race individually and try to stay together if you can. If there are no corrals (or if there are, start in the slower corral), try to start together until someone wants to break free. This is one that I have used successfully on a number of occasions.
Part of my opinion on this approach, however, is based on the fact that I would hate it if I knew that my friend lost a PR in a race because they decided to stick around with me and, obviously, vice-versa.
I also feel this way because I tend to train exclusively by myself and my running friends generally run different paces than me and have different race strategies than I do.
That all being said, if you chat about it before and your goals and pace are the same, running a race together is easy and fun. I finally ran an entire half marathon with an unexpected partner last October (pure coincidence–I met her at the starting line–was a complete stranger that I got to know as we ran together) and it was great. We were at the same pace, same training level (or lack their of) and same goal (simply to finish). We recently run a second race together this past May and again, it was a great success.
What are your thoughts on racing with friends? Do you finish together no matter what? Do you let your partner go if they are feeling good and want to take off ? Is this even an item of discussion amongst other runners or am I just crazy?