Wednesday, April 7, 2010

What makes a runner, a runner?

Fellow Runners (and wanna be runners),

Please read this article. It came out last fall, and Ben's cousin Annie pointed it out to me. Both Annie and I consider ourselves runners (it took a long time for me to embrace this title and say, yes, I am a runner), but neither of us have Boston Marathon qualifying times. We run for fun, for stress relief, for exercise, and to accomplish a goal. Personally, I run about a 12ish minute mile. Am I going to go the Olympics? No. Can I finish a half marathon and still be standing?? Heck yes! (As documented below while running the Monster Half on October 31, that's me in the Orange with the killer socks!)
So, if you're a runner like me, who loves to run, but isn't Michael Johnson, give this article (and the comments) a look, and tell me what you think. According to some in the running community, I'm not a runner, but instead a "plodder."

When I first read this article, I was steaming mad, but after reading the comments I was renewed that cocky runners are the minority, not the majority. We need to remember, it's not about how fast you go, it's that you're out there! You're running while others are on the couch, you're running when you could have easily stayed home! PLUS, with all this talk of health care lately, let's remember that the more active and healthy Americans are (no matter how fast they are) the cheaper our insurance premiums will be! (Stepping off my soap box now)

And Speaking of being healthy, Jen over at Prior Fat Girl has challenge for all of us on April 20th, check it out. I'm in, are you in?!?!?!


Mary said...

I remember that article and I didn't like it. I don't really agree that you have to run a certain time or pace to be a "runner". I don't know about the marathon concern, I don't really see the big deal I guess, why not do the 26 if you can, the elite runners won't be bothered by us slow gals so what does it matter? I say if you run then your a runner! Nice post, great socks! ;)

AReinke said...

While I agree with your enthusiasm about getting out and being active no matter what you are doing, all of us calling ourselves 'runners' is like calling ourselves 'softball players' or 'volleyball players' just because we are in a bar league. I think that is the problem that real runners have, and the distinction is that real runners run for competition and time, while the rest of us are just out there to burn cals/stabilize our mood/have fun. I have a feeling that the distinction comes with the competitive aspect of the sport. I can see both sides of the issue - the half-marathons I run are alongside marathon runners (the races are simultaneous), and they get REALLY mad if you get in there way, and I can't blame them, they are out for competition.