When I was out running this week I was approaching a gal that was doing some stretches, getting ready to start her run. I was watching her do the old school hamstring stretch and the calf stretch and for some reason it reminded me of when I was new to running. Maybe her outfit matched too well, maybe she seemed to be too aware of who might be looking at her. It just SEEMED to me that she was a bit new and a bit self-conscience. And I found myself thinking, that gal needs a “good job”! So I was certain that as I ran past her, I’d give her the ol “good work” or “good running”. These aren’t thing I normally say during a run, when I’m at a race cheering, oh sure! But not while running. However, this time I was gonna do it. Then, when she ran by me, she had her head phones on and her head pointed down. Boo. I wanted to grab her by the shoulders and say, “Pick your head up! You’re a runner and that’s F’ING awesome!!!”
I remember being a person that stretched out certain that everyone was judging her. I was sure that all the 3% body fat runners were sitting around eating three feet high pancake stacks and laughing at the funny looking pudgy girl that acts like she’s running. I remember being afraid to go into the running store because even though I was running 3-5 times a week I didn’t feel qualified to go in.
These are some of the things I’ve learned since then…
-Runners love running. They love people that love running. They love to talk about running. They love to encourage people to run. They love to talk about running gear, times, food, routes. And runners will discuss any of this with anyone that will listen.
-Running stores are made to get people running. They don’t care if you have never moved faster than a stumble. They’ll encourage you, give you tips, answer questions, and send you out the door excited!
-Runners don’t care what size you are, they’re just happy to see you out there.
-I have seen 3% body fat runners eat a lot of food. That part is true. They are freaking brats. But not all runners have 3% body fat.
-When someone drives by, or walks by, or runs by a runner, typically they are not judging them. If that person is inactive, they’re probably thinking “wow that person is running, wish I could do that”. If they are an active person, they are probably thinking, “another runner, that’s cool.” Or, “man those shoes are awesome, I wonder what kind they are.”
It’s good to remember, however much you have to walk during a run and no matter how much a run sucks…
You’re a runner. And that’s F’ING awesome.
Next time maybe I will grab her by the shoulders....