7 Ways To Connect With Your Local Run Community

Meet Brogan Graham. melin’s man from the world of running, building community, and all things active lifestyle. This larger-than-life character has trained for and completed multiple Boston Marathon's, ultra marathons, and even a few super quick beer mile times (6:55, sheesh!). His take on running is far more open and inclusive that the sport has been over the past number of decades and we've proudly followed him into the world of running. Follow along as he gives us insider tips and tricks to have more fun at whatever level of running you are at today and inspires you to Pace yourself.  




7 Steps to Getting Wrapped Into Running as a New Runner

If you're new to running, the first thing you should try is joining a group. Most run specialty stores host a weekly community run club that doesn't cost a dime. Immersing yourself into the local community is one of the best ways to enhance your experience and improve your odds of sticking with it.


1. Find your local run specialty store. Search "running store" and you'll find a handful of local spots that focus only on the world of running and walking. Find their site, find when they meet each week, add this time to your calendar, and head there a few minutes early. 


2. When you arrive at a running club be sure to find the leader, store owner, or run captain. This will take some asking around, but mostly everyone who is arriving will know who is in charge. Once you locate this person, head right up to them and introduce yourself as a brand new runner (or wherever you are in your journey). They'll love this, as most run specialty stores love both new runners and new additions to their club. 


3. Run, jog, or walk your way through that first run. Whatever you do, just be kind to yourself as you're trying something new and there is little chance you're going to kick ass right away. 


4. Before you leave, meet a few people and tell them, again, you're brand new to the group and where you are in your running journey. Meeting new faces is the best way to connect you to the community. These folks will want to know if they'll see you at the next gathering... then you're in. Say yes. 


5. In the time between that run club and the next time you meet up, drink lots of water, get into shopping for new shoes (from that store if you liked the vibe) and tell as many people in your life that you're "getting into running." This is key as they'll ask you next time you talk, "Hey, how's the running thing going?" Having folks check in on your progress can sometimes be what keeps you in the game. 


6. Be open to hopping around to other clubs, gatherings, and even track clubs. Running should be a fun way to explore where you live but make sure to shop around. You'll find different groups have different levels of intensity, fun, and community feel. 


7. Last but not least, invest in good gear. From shoes to nutrition, most run specialty stores around North America will have different levels of gear, from affordable to high end - Get the good stuff! Yes, you heard it here. Nice gear not only lasts longer, but makes you feel good. Usually the more expensive lines of gear, shoes, and everything else they're offering, has a little closer attention to detail, better materials, or simply just has a fit that makes you feel good. Lean into feeling good. Running is hard, give yourself a handful of weeks with consistent community runs to acclimate and you'll be in good shape.