There is an article making the rounds called Ok, you’re a runner get over it, by Chad Stafko. No doubt if you blog about running, read about running or run you’ve most likely read the article. I’m posting it here for two reasons. One, Mr. Stafko lives in a neighboring city about 15 miles from me. So at the very least I find it amusing that his article, published in the Wall Street Journal, has received so much retort from other writers including Mark Remy from Runner’s World Magazine. Two, I’ve been giving a lot of thought about my blogging and social media in general. I try very hard to make my blog fun and interesting about the topic of running. I’m a normal Joe, I blog about my running experiences and what they mean to me. I’m not a psychologist, former running pro, journalist or running coach. I don’t take myself too seriously; I’m not arrogant or in-your-face about running. I do it for the joy it brings and share my experience with others, but I’ll get into that later.
You can read Mr. Stafko’s article here: Ok You’re a Runner Get Over It
You can read Mr. Remy’s article here: Response to Stafko article ~ it’s pretty funny
I don’t know Mr. Stafko and the article doesn’t faze me in the slightest. He is writing his opinion about runners and that is his right. We live in a great country! I will say the article is a bit strange, almost whiney. It’s apparent he thinks “runners” are braggarts. Not only do we brag about our running accomplishments but when we are out on a run we are somehow bragging to those that pass us by on the road. A sort of in-your-face mentality ~ look at me.
I got the idea about blogging about a year ago by reading someone else’s blog. I thought it was a neat thing to do for the purpose I was trying to serve ~ trying to log 11,315 miles to honor my mother, nothing more nothing less. I didn’t even do research on other running blogs before I started. I just jumped in and started. I’m surprised to see how many other people were blogging about running. Lately, I’ve been kicking around in my head whether or not it is an arrogant thing to blog or should I just stop doing it altogether. It really didn’t cross my mind I might be bragging. I often ask myself why does anybody want to read my tripe. Who really cares? So what, I’m running ~ it doesn’t mean I have to tell the world about running. I just wanted to share with others the different races in our area, what they’re like and my experience participating. Maybe it will spur interest in others who would like to participate in the sport as well.
The subtitle for Mr. Stafko’s article states ~ Running a marathon is hard enough without also patting yourself on the back every step of the way.
I wish someone did pat me on the back ~ it might have made me move faster ~ :).
In my opinion the above statement is a little clueless. If you’ve gotten off your duff and completed any race, no matter how long or for whatever reason. I humbly offer this:
In the immortal words of our Vice-President Biden to President Obama as they rolled out the health care plan. “This is a big f***ing deal”.
Ask yourself this:
Why go to college and place the “University “X” sticker on the back of your car window? Because you are proud of your accomplishment and wait for it…it’s a big “f***ing” deal. You spent four or more years trying to better yourself ~ it’s big. It’s the same thing as placing the 26.2 sticker on your car.
Yes it is.
I have to say, I have never met any runner that went on and on about a race they ran. As-a-matter of fact I’ve only discussed runs and running experiences with other runners. Why? Because that’s who’s interested. Most of the time runners never discuss about the end of a race and the medal. It’s what happened on the way to the finish that counted. Some of these races are life changers for people. Sure, is cool to get the t-shirt and the medal. Are they fun to receive? Bling, yeah! But that’s not the only reason why people run. People in running community are some of the most giving and supportive people around. I live in a large military community and a lot of these runs help support the troops or a soldier who has died in the area. Many of these races support cancer, soldiers, and community. We can quibble about the percentage that goes to the cause, but in my book if you’re willing to come out and run so a dollar can be donated for your favorite cause ~ then who is it going to hurt.
Mr. Stafko also mentioned “selfies”. I’ll be honest I didn’t know what a “selfie” was. I understand now it is taking a picture of oneself. I’ll agree selfies are a little strange to me. I’ve only done it twice, really, and it was weird both times. I won’t do it again, I’m pretty sure. I’ve only done it to say hey I was here. But if you do it, I don’t judge. It is what it is. 🙂
I have read many “why I run” themed posts. I started a post about a month ago titled “Who do you do it for”. I never posted it but maybe now is a good time to share some running reasons for me.
Why I run or started running:
1. To honor my mother.
2. To lose weight.
3. Keep healthy
4. Challenge myself
5. Calm myself
6. Participate in community and give back
A short and humble list. No flashy pictures with bling just an honest assessment. Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to polish my 26.2 sticker on my car.
To all runners and non-runners alike ~ happy miles to you.