Do you think you might have better luck finding lifelong friends in healthy environments than down at the pub? When Laura moved to London three years ago, she was alone in a big city, but after joining Midnight Runners, she’s finally found her tribe and friends for life…
What prompted you to sign up to Midnight Runners?
When I moved to London 3 years ago I started testing out running clubs, hoping to find a healthy & fun community to be a part of. At one of these running clubs I met a woman named Channie who showed me a video of Midnight Runners. The second I saw the video I knew I was going to love it. Another woman, Lola, was there as well and we agreed we’d join Channie for the Midnight Runners Halloween Themed run that Friday. Running around London with a group of people dressed up in Halloween outfits and carrying speakers that were blasting a carefully curated Halloween playlist was amazing! I absolutely loved it and have been a regular at Midnight Runners ever since!
How does running make you feel?
I can remember one of the first times I really ran and the sense of empowerment it gave me. Of course that was in elementary school and it was probably only 200m but I felt so alive! As an adult, teaching myself how to become a distance runner gave me that same sense of empowerment. It’s incredible to push yourself and see what you can do! Running your first 5k, 10k, half marathon, marathon is exhilarating because you are pushing yourself to do something you maybe never thought you could. At the same time though, there are moments of complete calmness that come with running that I also love. It clears out my mind and allows me to calm down after a busy day.
How have your friendships evolved since you joined the running crew?
Having moved to London knowing absolutely nobody, it’s overwhelming to think about all of the friendships that I’ve formed in the past 3 years and honestly it’s all thanks to running. Lola, the friend who joined me on our first Midnight Runners event is now one of my dearest friends. Midnight Runners has a super inspiring and motivating group of core runners that I’m lucky enough to call my friends. I see some of these people 2-3 times a week and they bring so much joy to my life. It’s just incredible to share this common love for running and find a community of like minded people who are my kindred spirits and who propel me to be a better runner and better person.
What is your advice to others who are feeling lonely/lost in our city?
Go out there and do what you love and find people that love the same thing! If you don’t know what you love to do, then go dabble! London is bursting with amazing things to do so it shouldn’t be hard! In my experience, I have better luck finding lasting friendships in healthy environments (the gym, a fitness class, a running club, a book club) as opposed to going out to the pub. Once you find a group you like, remember it takes time to build up friendships but if you show up every week you are bound to make friends!
If you are short on time and a runner, there is a new app called MyCrew that allows you to link up with runners in your area. You can join a run or host a run with people of a similar pace group! I joined a run in my neighbourhood last week and it was a great because I didn’t have to travel anywhere but still was able to find a social group!
Why do you prefer running to the gym / studio workouts?
I have a desk job so I prefer being outside when I’m not working. This world is beautiful and exploring it by running is, in my opinion, one of the best ways to spend time!
How has this running crew changed your life for the better?
Stumbling upon Midnight Runners is probably one of the greatest things that has happened to me. I’ve made so many friendships, found the community that I’ve been looking, I’ve grown as a leader, I’ve grown as a runner, and I’ve found something that gives me passion and drive. I can’t imagine my life without Midnight Runners and the friends I’ve made there.
myCrew is the world’s first on-demand running platform where people connect and create or join their own running communities. It was created by the brains behind the world’s largest social running club, Midnight Runners and global internet phenomenon, Dubsmash. Having seen first hand the transformative power of social running, and technology’s ability to bring people together, they knew it was time to bring something new to the running scene.
Main image: Daniel Varga
Hettie is the editor and co-founder of DOSE. A keen runner, she’s also partial to a blast of high-intensity and hot yoga. A country girl at heart, she divides her time between London and the lush rolling hills of North Devon. When she’s not jetting off on her next adventure, Hettie can be found in a candle-lit alcove with a laptop, a spaniel and a full bodied Malbec.