In 2015, I took on the official title of ‘runner’ as I spent the year training to go from total novice to half marathon distances.
Now I’m by no means a professional, or the fastest, or an expert, but I am a runner nonetheless, and I’ve said it a good few times now: we’re a strange breed. Once you start taking your training seriously, you suddenly find your views and feelings on certain
1. Injuries – for normal people, a sprained ankle or bad back are an inconvience, sure, but for a runner, every little injury is a total disaster. Suddenly you’re filled with thoughts like ‘how many runs will I have to miss?’, ‘this will totally blow my training schedule’ and ‘oh God, what if I can never run again?!’; its basically the end of the world until you recover a few days later.
2. Bad weather – heavy rain, gale force winds, sub zero temperatures? Quite frankly there could be an earthquake and you’d still be considering ‘just a quick one’. I mean, once you’re wet, you’re wet, you might as well keep on running, right?
(Once you’ve run a Tough Mudder event, you know you’ll never be as cold and wet as you were coming out of Arctic Enema so rain worries become obsolete)
3. New shoes – shoe shopping is fun, yes? Um, no. Choosing a new pair of trainers opens up a whole can of worms: are they supportive, are they too cushioned/not cushioned enough, do you like the colour, have you worn this brand/model before, will they rub, I could go on..
You also hate throwing out your old faithful running shoes because you’ve gone through so much together.
4. Fibre – we all know fibre is good for us, but a big fibre-filled breakfast before a long run is an absolute no go, unless you want to lose valuable time in a port-a-potty or searching for a bush to squat behind.. Save your fibre for rest days.
5. Cold showers – suddenly the thought of jumping into an ice bath can sometimes be the best idea EVER. You’re not crazy, you’re a runner..
6. Medals and t-shirts – when you signed up for your first 10k, you didn’t really care all too much about that finisher medal or unisex performance top that was included in sign up, but now you basically decide whether or not a race is worthy of your time based on the standard of the medal/t-shirt; you can run that distance anytime, anywhere, so why should you fork out cash for the privilege if the goodies aren’t up to scratch?
7. Summer – we wait forever for summer to come around, but once its upon us, we quickly remember that we hate running in the daytime, and suddenly it’s a mission to rework your training times around the sun’s movement, and that’s before having to think about extra hydration, chaffing etc..
8. Runners – yep, now you’re a part of this community, you’ve left all your previous misconceptions about runners at the door. Every runner is still getting out there and doing it, we don’t judge each other. We smile and greet each other as our paths cross, we share race stories and training tips, and if you don’t get on with someone? Well you can just trip them up..
So now, want to become a runner?