Wednesday, June 8, 2011

What makes a runner, a runner?

If you can recall last week, here, when I announced that I'd like to run everyday in June, that I would like to log 120 miles for this month... Yeah I remember that too. But if I am lacking in anything (which isn't a lot) it is follow through. I like to say that I am going to do things, start things, finish things, etc. So while I haven't ran everyday, I have ran five out of seven days, and logged a whopping 21 miles. While not the most miles for a week ever logged, this is a lot considering the amount of time I've taken off and my inconsistency AKA lack of follow through. I still have 23 days to run 100 miles! I can do this!

I have been reading a lot of blogs and forums about runners, by runners and these people are fast. I'm talking like sub 20 min 5k's and qualifying for Boston, etc. Some of these people run "slow, dragging" miles at a 9 min pace!? What the what!? So while reading all the information out in the world wide web and in making these goals for myself and logging my ever so slow miles, and also my fastest 3 (10:38 pace! woo! go me!) miles to date, it got me thinking, what makes a runner, a runner?
Definitions from -
run: to go quickly by moving the legs more rapidly than at a walk and in such a manner that for an instant in each step all orboth feet are off the ground.
runner: a person who runs, esp an athlete

Who am I kidding? I am not an athlete. I was a mediocre gymnast, an okay cheerleader, and an undedicated weight lifter (they wanted us to wear singlets, um hello... no thank you). I am built like a line backer for no good reason, other then if I was a boy I could have been a football player. When I tell people I've ran two half marathons, and I've signed up for more, they ask me,"So, you're a runner?", and I reply, "Um, no. I just run." So again, what makes a runner, a runner? Am I not a runner because I've only ran half marathons, not the full? Am I not a runner because I am by no means a purist runner? I love all the gadgets, shoes, clothes that go with running! And if my iPod dies forget it, I'm going home. Am I not a runner because I can't just eat a banana and go? I need carbs people and time to digest! Am I not a runner because I run my recovery/slow runs at around a 12:30 pace? Am I not a runner because I have yet to run a track workout? Am I not a runner because my "fast" is equivalent to the average runner's slow? Am I not a runner because I don't run everyday? I don't follow a training plan, I don't do Yasso 800s, or run for negative splits. Am I not a runner because I absolutely could not talk while running at my comfortable pace!? I refuse to waste valuable breaths. Am I not a runner because I feel the need to refuel even if I'm only running 10 miles?

And yet, I want to get faster. I want to run a 5k in under 30 min. I want to run a half in under two hours. I have running goals. Things that I want to accomplish as a runner.

After much contemplation, I came to the conclusion that, yes I am a runner. I may run at a fast walking pace, but I'm getting out there, and looking good all decked out in all my Nike garb if I say so myself. When I run 6 miles, albeit at a 12ish min pace, I've done more than most people have done that day. 

I mean, you're not going to catch Doogie out there running on the greenway anytime soon... So, next time I get asked if I'm a runner, I think that I'll reply, "Why yes I am."

Slow Runners Unite! 
Am I not a runner, because I look like I'm walking over the finish line, legit dragging my feet.. and all I was thinking was food, food, food...

Monday: 3 miles (10:38 pace!!)
Tuesday: 4.65 miles hot hot hot

1 comment:

  1. Great writing. Not that I know how to write but I think an English teach would talk about it or something.

    There is always Olympic Speed Walking