Health and Fitness

Go the distance. Or Not.

Kelly Gerard
Published On
April 19, 2016

Almost every time that I tell someone that I'm a runner I'm inevitably asked if I've run a marathon.  It seems that both runners and non-runners feel that the greatest achievement is "The Marathon." It's like you're not a real runner unless you've run some ridiculous distance and endured black toe nails, blisters and vomited on the side of the road. I'm a runner.  I love to run.  I'd run every day if I could.  But you will not see me run a marathon and I can't figure out why that should be my greatest achievement as a runner. It's that time of year again when "Boston" (aka The Boston Marathon) is right around the corner.  We've all seen the growing number of runners on the side of the road. When the signed up they kissed their partners and kids goodbye for the grueling 18 week training.  These are the runners that are out on the road with their headlamps and hydration belts at 5am in the pitch black.  You'll see them in sleet, snow and rain. Nothing can stop them from getting in their long run.  Their existence is a faint memory of friends and family. No thanks.  Maybe I'm a fair weather runner but I don't want to start making running un-fun.  Twenty miles in the sleet?  No thanks.  Value pack of Glide to contain the blisters?  I'll pass.  Loosing a toenail so close to flip-flop season would be tragic. Give me a 5K or 10K any day.  How about one every weekend?  My goal is to kill it in these races. And guess what my recovery will be like?  I'll be feeling back to my old self as soon as the barista at Starbucks finishes making my Grande Almond Latte. Let's not cut ourselves short for "only" running a 5K.  The 5K rocks!  We don't need to torture our bodies, neglect our families and make running un-fun just because there is a perceived feeling that you're only a real runner if you run marathons. You're a runner in my book if you run two miles around your neighborhood or if you run an ultra through Death Valley. Run with me at North Shore Trail Runners and I'll see you at the next 5K!

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