I often hear the words (in some form or another)
well since you’re a runner, you….
You’re a runner, of course you can…
I couldn’t do that, I’m not a runner like you…
I want to put to rest the idea that “I’m a runner” and here’s why.
When I think of a runner, I think of a person who has been running… well For-Eh-VER. They love running. They are energized by running. They get lost in running. They literally wear out their running shoes. They can go running alone or in groups, preferably alone. Cold weather, hot weather, rain or shine, doesn’t matter so long as it’s a running day – which seems to be every day ending with the letter “y”.
Maybe this is idealistic, but this is what I think when I hear the words “You’re a runner”.
I have a love/like relationship with running. I love the after effects of running, what it does to my body; the camaraderie that comes by running with other people. I like running as a sport. Not my favorite, but its a good activity. I have come to appreciate the serenity of running and enjoy the relaxation it can create.
Here’s my proposition:
– I am an athlete –
I enjoy all sorts of activities. I like the multisport lifestyle (triathlons) because as soon as you get tired of one event, you move onto the next. I enjoy mixing up my training with heavy lifting, biking, swimming, running, water sports, etc. I like learning new things. I enjoy Ultimate Frisbee and other forms of “running” around. I am not energized by one sport, I’m more energized by the people I do the sport with. I love the social aspect of being active. I enjoy training in groups. I am an athlete.
I ran my proposition (Runner v. Athlete) by a friend of mine who is a runner… at first she wasn’t sure and then I explained to her the difference and she said that she would totally consider herself a runner and definitely not an athlete and visa versa for me!
So I’ll end with this. No worries if you slip up and call me “a runner,” I promise to take it as a complement. But know in my mind that I consider myself an athlete.
I hope you find some activity that energizes you too!