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One of the things that comes up time and again when I talk to people about running–whether they’re elite athletes or people in the checkout line at Target–is that running provides a sense of community. Whether you just moved to a new city and don’t know anyone, or you decide that you need to shake up your life and want to hit the pavement to see what’s out there, running offers a way to find common ground with others.
I talked about the importance of community with our April cover runner, the determined and delightful Molly Huddle, at our cover shoot on a very cold morning in Flagstaff, Ariz. Molly described the inspiration and strength that being a part of the running community brings her, and how that helps her pursue her competitive goals. Read more about Molly’s training and hopes for Boston in our cover feature starting on page 56.
Running groups are a great way to find a ready-made pack of running friends, but these groups can also provide a way to connect with others and unite them to support a common cause at the same time. Our Community article (page 19) shines the spotlight on this issue with 261 Fearless, a nonprofit running organization started by the indomitable Kathrine Switzer. Switzer, famously known as the first woman to run the Boston Marathon as a numbered entrant, has dedicated her life to running and empowering women to find their fearlessness and tackle life with all they’ve got. 261 Fearless now has 45 running groups across four continents, all centered around the members’ shared commitment to supporting each other in running as well as in life’s challenges.
Running isn’t just about nurturing connections to other humans–it’s also a great way to get some quality time in with your canine companion. We’re Obsessed (starting on page 9) for April focuses on Team WR‘s shared obsession: our dogs! We love our dogs as much as we love to run, so we researched the best gear out there for running safely and happily with your pup. And on a personal note, this was a perfectly timed article for me, as I just achieved one of my 2018 goals while researching this piece. I adopted an adorable rescue dog who will soon be running the trails of Southern California with me, and I couldn’t be happier about it!
Another great unifier in the running community is food–we all want to eat the best food out there to fuel our bodies and bring us maximum benefits, and hopefully, enjoyment (although anyone who has had to force down an overly sweet gel at mile 19 may argue about the joy found in that moment!). Our 2018 Fuel Up Awards (starting on page 40) are the result of Team WR‘s taste- and road-testing of dozens of nutrition products to highlight the best-tasting, most effective ways to fuel your body before, during and after a run.
To dig deeper into the current trends of sports nutrition and to help us all make sense of the seemingly endless amounts of often-confusing, sometimes-conflicting reports on what to eat, we took an in-depth look at what’s going on in the science of eating for endurance athletes in our feature On the Cutting Edge (page 52).
April of course means one thing in the running world–Boston! Join us online at womensrunning.com as we bring you a wealth of content before, during and after what looks to be one of the most exciting Boston Marathons in years for the women’s elite division. We can’t wait to see what happens this year, but one thing is for sure–it’s going to be a wicked good time!