Running is one of my all-time favorite activities. It’s incredibly efficient, requires no equipment other than a pair of running shoes, and can be done pretty much anywhere—which makes it convenient, too. When I run alone, I’m able to zone out, catch up on podcasts, brainstorm, or think about things that might otherwise keep me awake at night. But I also love running with others. Watch the video to find out why!

Ready to start running with others? Keep these 4 simple tips in mind:

1. Figure out what type of group runner you are Are you energized by big social gatherings? Check out larger running groups in your area. If not, consider starting a running tribe of just two or three. Or try both and see what you like best!

2. Seek out potential partners Find your local chapter of an organization like Road Runners, ask your local gym for suggestions, or look for a group online. Even posting a note on Facebook can be a great way to network with new running friends.

3. Check your compatibility Before you fill your calendar with runs, make sure you’re on the same page as your new group or running partner. It’s important to have similar schedules, training goals, and running speeds.

4. Try not to worry so much! The first time I ran with a group, I was so anxious the night before I barely slept. I worried about things like not being able to keep up, toe cramps, or worse… having to make an emergency bathroom break. These are all things every runner experiences at some point. And there’s simply no sense in worrying about them because they happen to everyone.

Running with others is about building friendships, giving and receiving encouragement, increasing accountability, and taking your training to the next level. Lace up your sneakers, surround yourself with positive, reliable training buddies, and have fun out there!

Do you prefer your runs solo or social? Got a funny group-run story to share? Tell us in the comments!