Making running a social affair

The Good Life

Patrick Bieser

Patrick Bieser, president and founder of Shorewood-based Northwoods Software Development Inc., does more than run his own company.

He runs approximately 40 miles a week, and is the president of the Milwaukee Running Group – OMG, an organization that celebrated its one-year anniversary on Sept. 1. (OMG stands for the Original Milwaukee Running Group; the “R” is silent.)

Patrick Bieser
Patrick Bieser

“There’s other running groups in the area that are much larger than us, but they don’t have a friend basis,” Bieser said. “Ours is friends and fun and social on equal parts with running.”

The group is comprised of 361 members, 80 of whom are active. Members meet up multiple days a week, including on Mondays, when they run for an hour and then eat dinner at a local restaurant.

“I’ve never met a runner who wasn’t nice and friendly,” Bieser said. “And one of the things that happens when you run with the group is you can’t Facebook, you can’t Snapchat, and you can’t be talking on the phone or texting. It’s one of the most fabulous ways to have extended long conversations with people that you wouldn’t have in any other context.”

Bieser, who has already done a couple marathons, will be participating in the first-ever Milwaukee Running Festival on Nov. 1 and the Boston Marathon in the spring. He qualified for the latter by 24 seconds.

“It’s free,” Bieser said of why people should give running a try. “All you need is a pair of tennis shoes and the guts to show up the first time.”

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