It’s no news that exercising with others improves the likelihood of success in training. Having a workout buddy keeps us honest – we must get out of bed and into our sneakers because someone else is depending on us doing so. While having a workout buddy is great, it’s not always feasible. When training for the Cape Cod Marathon this past October, I struggled to find a friend to train with. My last training partner was pregnant, others were taking well deserved breaks from distance, and others simply weren’t my pace. So, I trained alone. During the race, my solitary training proved to be a blessing as the race itself was quite solitary. There were few fans (not to discount the stellar cheering my family and friends provided) and hundreds of runners, not thousands. I felt prepared for a somewhat lonely four hours because my training runs were done without throngs of other runners or screaming Wellesley, BC, and BU students. Fast forward three months. It’s still just me on the treadmill. It’s still just me out on the roads. But, I realize that I’m not doing this alone. Even if there isn’t someone slogging out the miles with me, there are plenty of someones training with me. Last week, my friend Dawn and I traded infinite emails about our food logs and joked how many (okay…most) people would be bored to tears if they had to read the details we were discussing. My friend Jen has been giving me new ideas to help me break out of a weight-lifting “rut.” Yesterday, at the gym, as another member, Janet, prepared to run many miles on the treadmill, I offered encouragement for the tough hours ahead and she asked about my past training and races. I’m not training with Dawn, Jen, or Janet for any races. But, it’s friends (and potential new friends) like Dawn, Jen, and Janet who, without even knowing it, get me through my training.