Thursday, May 15, 2014

10 Things People Don't Tell You About Being a Runner

Leap in!
Inspired by Crystal's post 15 Things Nobody Tells You About Running I came up with some more,
including some male runner related items. So read on to get a list of things that nobody tells you about being a runner but which you get to learn on your own.

  1. If you are not in pain at some point during your training, especially for a 1/2 marathon or longer, then you are probably not training. Told to me by a Doctor who is a runner as well when I complained about the ailments I was getting while training for a marathon. Her take, was, ya, what did you expect?
  2. You will never have paid as much attention to your nipples in your life. They will bleed. They will chafe. They will burn in the shower after a run. And you will put bandaids, nipple covers, and other items on them when you run. Yes, men, you will use nipple cream at some point.
  3. You will experience split toenails and possibly lost toenails. If they split you might even take to wearing nail polish on that nail to try to strengthen it and save the nail (hint: it worked for me and the nail healed back together and I did not lose my big toe nail). I experienced the split nail training for my first marathon. My Father-in-law did not know what to think when he saw the painted toenail. Not sure if I ever explained that one to him ;-) I have had friends lose their toenails, eck!
  4. You will crash after your first big race and stop running unless you work a post running plan into your training schedule. I find I need another goal after a big run or I tend to go into a no run mode. I finished I big race, I can now relax. Months later I have put on pounds and my stamina is shot. I have to rebuild that base again. Don't let this happen to you. Plan another race further out. Always have the next race on the horizon, build in some slack running after the big race, but don't finish one race without your next goal planned out. 
  5. You will get sea-sick while running on the road long distance. This sounds nuts but run with a water bottle on a belt around your waist for long runs and the up and down motion against your gut may bring on nausea or sea-sickness. I had to switch to a water bladder in a back-pack to overcome this during 25-30 km training runs.
  6. You will get the runners trots at the worst time. Maybe it will be the coffee that morning or the pizza the night before and your undiagnosed gluten intolerance, but you will have long runs where you are far from a toilet and have to go. 
  7. You will get chafing between your legs and under your armpits. Bodyglide lubricant will become your friend. Showers will become your enemy when your crotch is in flames at the touch of water.
  8. You will get questioned by family and friends about why you are doing this. You think people will be happy for your new found love of exercise and being in shape. In truth they will question why you put yourself through pain, the long hours, and the weird rituals.
  9. You will drive people crazy with your addiction. See the previous but in general you will talk too much about your training plan, eating plan, and all the intricacies of running. But nobody really cares to hear the details. They love you but there is only so much of your addiction they want to hear.
  10. You will become a clothes fanatic. Wool socks? Padded socks? Individual toe socks? 5-panel, 8-panel, or more panels for your spandex? Which technical shirt will reduce nipple chafing? What hat will not squeeze your head too much during a long run? When you are running for 26 miles these little details will haunt your thoughts. Goodness knows you have enough time to think about it on your runs.

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