• About Allison

    I am a 26-year-old married Michigan gal living in Sarasota, Florida. This blog is a chronicle of my journey toward a healthier lifestyle! I started running in January 2009 and began to change my eating habits in May 2009. Now, I am dedicated to training smart and eating right. Join me as I seek to balance running and eating healthy, local foods with my crazy work life and hilarious home life.

    Contact me: allisonisactive@gmail.com

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Slow and Steady… Annoys Other Runners?

On Friday, the New York Times published an article about how some runners feel that “plodders,” or slower runners, are ruining the marathon.

In the article, faster runners are stating the opinion that slower runners shouldn’t get to say they “ran” a marathon or receive the same medals as faster runners.

I think you guys know my position on running slowly.  I am of the opinion that if you did the work and finished the course, no matter if you are running, walking, or crawling to the finish line, you deserve that medal and you deserve to feel pride in your accomplishment.  Just because I run a 12-minute mile doesn’t mean I didn’t put in the early morning, late night, blazing hot, freezing cold long runs, the repetitive speed work, and the grueling, leg-burning hill work that someone who runs an 8-minute mile did!

You know what I think?  I think the “faster” runners are upset that we “penguins” are making them look bad!  It’s not as impressive that they finished a marathon if someone else did it, too. They’re just grouchy that these days, running a marathon is accessible to the masses.  I personally think it’s wonderful that so many people are accomplishing the 26.2 mile feat, overcoming their own self-doubt, the voices that say, “You’ll never make it!”, or health issues to achieve a lifelong dream, and I think that all marathon finishers should be congratulating all other marathon finishers.

And, to be fair, all the race walkers I know are very upfront that they “walked a marathon” or “completed a marathon,” and I think that it’s no less impressive!  I am very upfront about my Galloway style of running, and if anyone asks, I would be extremely honest that I walk a portion of all my races! But, it’s silly to state that since I took longer than the “elite” runners, stopped for water and fuel, or walked a portion of my race, I therefore don’t deserve a medal.

Okay.  Whew.  I was heated about that!

What do you think about this article?  Are the “plodders” of this world dirtying the name marathon?  Do slower runners or walkers have a right to complete in the same marathons as 8-minute milers?

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2 Responses

  1. i think you should re-read my blog post before you jump down my throat about this issue. 🙂

  2. I did re-read your post, and maybe my comment was a bit rude in the light of my passion for slow runners, one of which I am. 🙂 It really seemed to me that you were partially agreeing with the point that slower runners shouldn’t be allowed to call themselves marathoners. I think that before you became one of the speedy few of the running world, you maybe would have thought differently. Sometimes it helps to think back to when you, like me, where just a beginner.

    We definitely agree on a few points: One, it is TOTALLY ridiculous to stop for lunch during a race. Who does that?! (My stomach wouldn’t allow it even if I wanted to!) And two, I really can’t stand it when slow runners or walkers line up at the front. We plodders have to be honest with ourselves! Line up with others who run at your same pace, for heaven’s sake. That’s why I like races with clearly marked time corrals – so I don’t end up annoying the fast people! 🙂

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