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"You are not a REAL runner if..."

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Have you ever heard a self-proclaimed "real" runner talk about all the things that makes one a "real" runner? Or vice-versa?

For example...you aren't a REAL runner, according to some circles, if:

1. You listen to music while you run
2. You talk walk breaks during your run
3. You run less than XX miles per week
4. You run wearing yoga pants
5. You run at too slow a pace (say, for example, 10 mins per mile or more).

Well, I'm here to say I've heard all these rules and I've broken them all, too. And these "rules" are total crap. Don't listen to them.

Last night I huffed and puffed my usual 2 miles out. While wearing headphones. And yoga pants. And I took two walk breaks. And I ran at an average pace of 11:45 per mile (including my two walk breaks). And I've only run 6 miles so far this week.

Yep, I'm breaking all the rules. And you know what? I'm still a "REAL" runner, and proud of it. Why? Because I run. Last time I checked, that's the only thing that really makes you a runner - you run. I may not run fast. I may wear yoga pants because I'm self-conscious about my cellulite showing in shorts. I may run with headphones so that I can't hear how hard I'm breathing. I may take walk breaks after - and only after - I've conquered that giant hill on Johnson Drive. But I'm running. I'm getting out there. I'm challenging myself. I'm trying to run faster, longer and better. I may be making slow progress, but I'm making progress. I'm a runner. I run. In fact, I plan on running again tonight. And this weekend. And next week. In fact, I think I'm going to run all the way to Maintenanceville.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Thank you! Amen!

    I actually read a very popular blog about this subject not too long ago. In it the Sparker was listing all of the elitist ways they were a "real" runner. I thought it was total crap. I was also a little disappointed to discover what a snob they were.

    So thank you for posting this and calling people like that out. Simply put, I am a runner-because I run and so is everyone else.
    3225 days ago

    Comment edited on: 9/24/2012 3:30:39 PM
  • FARRAH511
    That's the Attitude!! aaaaaannnnddd YOU'RE A RUNNER!!!

    ´¨¨)) -:¦:-
    ¸.•´ .•´¨¨))
    ((¸¸.•´ ..•´ - -:¦:-
    -:¦:- ((¸¸.•´* Farrah -:¦:-

    3225 days ago
    Right on! We are runners! I have to say that to myself as I run on my treadmill trying to complete my Couch 2 5K program. emoticon emoticon
    3227 days ago
    john bingham said it best... "If you run, you are a runner. It doesn't matter how fast or how far. It doesn't matter if today is your first day or if you've been running for twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run."

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3227 days ago
    I still have to track "intervals" on SP although I run the whole time- but I'm still above 12 min. miles. It hurts a little bit each time, because I feel like I'm lying to my tracker. But I'm out there doing it. WE'RE out there, giving it our all.

    Merriam-Webster puts it perfectly: Runner: (n) A person who runs.

    3228 days ago
    Thankfully nobody has ever said that to me - because if they had I'd say they could stick it where the sun doesn't shine. ANYBODY who runs, not matter how well the attempt is a runner. The word 'run' in the dictionary doesn't come with all these "but not ifs". If it helps you run, it's helped you become a runner.

    There are a few people who have caught me in moments where I am indulging (in a taste of ice cream or something - but not a carton) and say comments like "A moment on the lips, forever on the hips." and I make SURE they end up eating their words.

    :) Same way goes with running! I believe when somebody has the ego to say "you aren't a runner if.." comments are doing it for the compliments and attention and not the run itself.
    3228 days ago
    emoticon I'm with ya!
    3228 days ago
    LOL. I know what you mean, I've been having trouble finding a new training program after my 5k rookie program. Its like there's nothing in between from a beginner 5k to marathon training at 6 min. mile.
    3228 days ago
  • MISSB8604
    THANK YOU FOR THIS. I'm so sick of people like that!
    3229 days ago
    Hahahaha--I had a blog like this recently! Except I was worried people would think less of me if I didn't work for longer races or faster times!

    I like to run when I like to run, and that's all. We're both runners. emoticon
    3229 days ago
  • DEE797
    Love your blog...YOU GO GIRL! emoticon emoticon
    3229 days ago
  • KGIRL160
    I was so happy when I finally "ran" fast enough to be able to select run instead of walk on the tracker!!! 'Sides everyone knows that yoga pants are the BEST to run in - and handy when you stretch out afterwards.
    3229 days ago
    Oh, please! The minute people start a sentence with "You aren't a real (enter subject here) unless you..." I start looking for the door!
    Rock on with your bad self!!
    3229 days ago
    LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! Sing it sista!
    I'm too am a yoga pants wearing, music playing, over 10 min mile, take breaks when I want to RUNNER!
    One of my goals is to wear actually running shorts when I run one day and be proud of my legs. So with ya there! Hell even the emoticon runner is wearing yoga pants! HAHA
    Love your attitude!
    emoticon emoticon

    3229 days ago
    My favorite running quote:

    "If you run, you are a runner. It doesn't matter how fast or how far. It doesn't matter if today is your first day or if you've been running for twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run." ~John Bingham

    So, yes, we are ALL real runners :o)
    3229 days ago
  • no profile photo CD4429274
    Runners run. And that's the only qualifier. Headphones, yoga pants, walk breaks, slower paces... none of those keep runners from earning their name.

    And yep, rules are definitely meant to be broken. :)
    3229 days ago
    I read an article one that said you were not a true runner until you messed your pants while on a run. I think I'll run but not be a "runner" for as long as I can. emoticon
    3229 days ago
    I think the people who made up those rules are self centered and overbearing. Break all the rules you want! You ROCK! :)
    3229 days ago
    Very well written! Awesome point! Love it! emoticon
    3229 days ago
    Ignore those snooty runners!!! Keep running, btw I run with yoga pants too emoticon
    3229 days ago
  • no profile photo CD12396377
    I’ve broken all the rules and I’m only halfway through the Couch to 5k program, but I’m a runner, too. I read an article in Runner’s World for beginning runners that said that if you headed out the door and ran to the mailbox and back, you are a runner. And you know, if RW says you’re a runner, you’re a runner.

    3229 days ago
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