A Sense of Community
Some of you may not know that I am part of a race management company known as Rogue Valley Race Group. We help organize and manage races such as runs, triathlons, and bike races. As this weekend comes to an end, we just wrapped up our biggest race of the year, known as Granite Man. Granite Man consists of seven races which include an off road triathlon, duathlon, kid’s triathlon, mountain bike race, mountain run, poker run, and kid’s scavenger hunt. There are so many races, they have to be spread across an entire weekend. To put it mildly, I am absolutely exhausted physically and mentally. It takes a lot of work to put on an event like this, but when people tell you how much they enjoyed the races and you see the smiles, that’s what makes it all worth it. Did I mention I am exhausted? I will make this a short post. I just wanted to share my observations of the racing community that was present during the weekend of events. This sense of community is a powerful thing when it comes to exercise.
Community- A feeling of fellowship with others, as a result of sharing common attitudes, interests, and goals. This is the definition of community according to Google. This is one of the things that I feel Crossfit has really gotten right. When people feel a sense of cohesion with a group, they have better exercise adherence, according to a study in Small Group Research. A meta-analysis in the Sport and Exercise Psychology Review revealed something similar, groups where principles were used to build group cohesiveness had much better outcomes than exercise classes and individual exercise. And finally, research in the Journal of Behavioral Medicine showed that those who felt supported and part of a cohesive exercise group, had better attendance. There is this feeling of cohesion, support, and community at these local races.
I am not saying you have to attend Crossfit or become an endurance athlete, but it appears to be pretty clear that being part of an exercise community will greatly increase the odds that you will stick with an exercise routine. Being a part of the race community has introduced me to a lot of great people, and I have made a lot of awesome friends. It’s like being a part of a family. So with that being said, I would highly recommend joining an exercise community. Did I mention I was tired? I think I am going to rest up now. I hope you all had a great weekend!