Non-runner naysayers

24 Mar

Some recent conversations and readings have gotten under my skin a little bit due to their negative tone toward running and those who choose love to run. It has come in the form of not-so-funny jokes, underhanded comments, outright statements of disdain, and general lack of support. What’s that about?

I’ve been pondering this for some time and I can’t come up with a good answer. There are multiple reasons that motivate others to make such comments or gestures that can be hurtful or unsupportive. Lack of self-awareness? Jealousy? Poor tact? Who knows for sure.

It seems there is always someone who gives you reason after reason why they don’t run and questions why you do.

Oh, running sucks? Then don’t run.

It’s important to have a sense of humor in life and have a good laugh at ourselves sometimes. Personal opinions also have their value. But it is important to remember that our words matter. Keep that in mind when you are about to say any of the following to a runner:

“You ran how far?! OHMYGOSH you’re insane! I could never do that!”

“Did you know running is really bad for your body?”

“No, I’m not interested in coming to cheer you on. It’s not my thing.”

“Ugh. I hate running.”

“Wow, I could probably run faster than that.”

If running isn’t your thing, that’s OK – don’t run! Tell me about what you do enjoy. Cycling? Cool! Rowing? Awesome! Boxing? Great! Have an event coming up? I’ll come cheer you on. I’m sure you work just as hard as I do to reach your goals.

Just because I am really into running doesn’t mean I expect everyone else to be nor does it mean that I think your preferred sport/workout/interest/activity is somehow less valuable than mine. Even if you’re not into any form of exercise at all, that’s your decision and I won’t judge you for it. But please respect me and my choice to run.

I do have to close by saying that even though poorly timed jokes and unfiltered comments can sting, I receive far more support than negativity from friends and family and I am forever grateful for that!

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4 Responses to “Non-runner naysayers”

  1. Jenny March 25, 2013 at 3:53 pm #

    Where do I get that shirt he is wearing?! And more importantly… Is that a doughnut?

    I agree, I have some friends who are like…why do you run? Your wasting your time? (if its on lunch break) ect… Seriously Its my body! And I would only do it if I enjoy it!

    I just try and block that stuff out, and know that I would outrun them in a zombie apocalypse!

    • Nikki March 25, 2013 at 10:41 pm #

      Haha! You can probably get the shirt pretty easily, seems to be a trend. Yes, that is a doughnut!

  2. Diana March 29, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

    Yes! I had a conversation the other day with my cousin (who I don’t see more than once every few years) and when he found out that I’m running a HM in May, he asked (after asking me how far the race was) if I was going to win. I laughed and said “Uh, no. The people who win these things can run a 5 minute mile” and he said “So what? I can WALK a mile in 10 minutes – why can’t you run faster than that?” I asked him why he didn’t run, then, and he said “Hell no, I can’t do that.” Uh, ok. Shut up, then. GRRR.

    • Nikki March 30, 2013 at 12:53 pm #

      How rude! I think we need to come up with or find some good one-liners in response. I’m sure there’s probably a list somewhere!

      And if he’s walking a 10:00 mile, he might as well just call it running…

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