Over 2016, a dozen or so Strava runners followed/monitored my jogs. I now follow them. Scottish S, a fast-pacer at 4:00 mins/km, ran 1,400 kms. British A isn’t so serious (1,100 kms) but is much faster than me at 5:00. Spanish C must be an athlete, he’s so swift. A Strava friend in Belarus has hundreds of followers and over 2,200 kms, much of it amongst snow. B from Auckland did 2,000 kms, quite a bit faster than me, while a Johannesburg pal is more my slow pace but hit over 2,300 kms. Russian Y, who snaps photos of snow drifts, proudly achieved 2,016 kms in 2016 and plans 2,017 miles (a 60% increase!) in 2017. A from Horsham, and P from Romania, both clocked up 2,400 kms or more, and fast. N from The Entrance (NSW) runs at 5:00 and totalled over 2,800 kms, while an Israeli friend with many followers, is more my pace but runs so often that he amassed over 3,000 kms. My nearest Strava peer, in Croydon, is speedy and oh so prolific – he finished 2016 with over 3,400 kms.
When I call them “friends,” “pals,” or “peers,” I’m being overly familiar. I’ve never met any of them, indeed have barely exchanged a word through Strava comments. Yet they feel like a brotherhood. Why we all run, I don’t know, but run we do, and supporting each other on the Strava platform comforts and motivates.