How Twitter has made me a Better Runner

That might sound like an odd statement, but it’s true.

I only joined Twitter in Jan this year…

My First tweet was sent on the 15th Jan 2013, and it read:
‘Bad Monday, next week I am going to start it with a cheap Starbucks latte’- obviously there was a deal going on at Starbucks in January!

Anyway, I started by following my favourite bloggers, and friends, and little by little I’ve increased that and am now following nearly 700 people. (Not loads I know, but it keeps growing daily!)

I love twitter, and drive my boyfriend mad by checking it constantly. I use it for up-to-date world news, but honestly, mostly for all things running related. Here’s how using twitter has helped me become a better runner;

New Friends
This has been an unexpected but amazing product of my twitter activity. I’ve made some great friends, like Leah that I now see both online and in real life. They’re great to meet up with for a run, yoga class, froyo or just hang out with. They also pop up all over the place, especially at local running events so I don’t feel like the loser on my own anymore! These friends encourage me to sign up for races, complete my workouts, push my pace as well as providing entertaining running stories for me to read on my way to work!

Running Faster
Through said twitter friends, I’ve had the opportunity to run with faster people, like Laura, who push me to up my pace. Additionally, the tweets that I receive from people like Ashley, who believe that I can run faster than I think I can, push me to run faster to prove them right!

Encouragement
Remember the time that I had to run 18 miles before work? Well, every 6 miles, whilst taking fuel breaks, I would tweet about how I was getting on. The encouragement that I got from my twitter friends was amazing. My particular favourites were those that said I was inspiring them to get out an run (huge head from that!). I also use twitter when I need some encouragement to lace up my trainers and get out of the door- either by reading about other people’s runs or by getting tweets from people like Rhianon, who I’ve actually never met, but can always be relied on to send me a ‘go out and do it’ tweet!

Diversifying my Workouts
‘Have you tried this class, or this one, or this one?’ Well, I wouldn’t have even heard about many of these classes, let alone given them a try if I hadn’t heard someone rave about them on twitter. I follow a lot of fitness studios, too, so I know about their offers, new classes and freebies! I’ve tried Cyclebeat, Speedflex, Barrecore, Swedercise and Yin and Yang yoga all after seeing them on twitter!

Blogs
I love reading blogs, and find them an amazing resource for inspiration, workouts and information. Through twitter my blog feed has grown hugely, especially when it comes to UK based runners, many of whose blogs I wouldn’t have found without twitter.

Support
After I finished my half marathon on Sunday, I tweeted that although everything hadn’t gone to plan, I’d still earnt a huge new PB. I received so many tweets of congratulations from other runners who understand what a huge deal that is. Sure, my non-running friends are awesome, and came to watch me and asked how I did, but they don’t always understand the amount of work that’s gone into that PB- or that the first thing I said was ‘I reckon I could do sub 1.50 next time…’ I felt so overwhelmed with the amount of support I received on Sunday and Monday through twitter!

Accountability
There’s a joke that I once heard (from a blogger, obviously) that if you didn’t blog about it, it didn’t happen. Well now it’s even easier to keep people updated on your run, yoga class, wardrobe, lunch etc in 140 characters. Much faster than writing a whole post about it, oh and it’s a record that it did actually happen.

Racing
I’ve lost track of the number of races I’ve heard about on Twitter- either from the organisers themselves, or through runners signing up for them. There’s currently a lot of chat surrounding the Whole Foods Women’s Only Richmond Park Run next weekend, about distances, paces and, most importantly, brunch afterwards.

Advice
Have a running, kit, fuel question? Ask your twitter followers and one of them will ALWAYS have an answer, or will be able to point in the right direction for some advice.

If you don’t already- follow me on twitter here, and if I don’t follow you, leave your twitter handle in a comment and I’ll add you!

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4 Comments

  1. October 9, 2013 / 12:11 pm

    Ooh I LOVE Twitter! When I’ve run late at night and I’m exhausted but still get it done then I know I can post on Twitter and my twitter buddies will say “Well done.” My RL friends just tell me I’m mad.

  2. October 10, 2013 / 10:13 am

    So so true! I didn’t understand twitter at first. But now I’ve been on it more regularly, its like its brought a sense of community back into a world where one rarely has time for traditional community – does that make sense?

  3. October 11, 2013 / 8:11 am

    It sounds weird – but I think pretty much ALL of my IRL friends I have made through twitter (apart from old school friends etc). I don’t know – it’s like, we “get” each other before we even met – I’ve hardly ever met someone who I talk to on twitter and then meet IRL and go “whomp whomp…er…no”. Especially moving to a new country and new city, twitter has allowed me to connect with people who have the same hobbies and passions as me, and I feel immediately part of a community (as well as having been able to create my own community). It’s all warm and twitter fuzzies from me!!

    I love the other elements you have called out too – some of them I had never even thought of, but you are SO right!!

    The bf totally doesn’t get twitter at all, and hates me being on it ALL THE TIME – so Tom is not alone there! 😉

  4. June 25, 2014 / 1:04 pm

    It’s so lovely to hear that social media has had such a great effect on your exercise, you wouldn’t think it would work that way actually! It’s always great to find people who share your passions.

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