Which runners do I respect? The ones that have earned it.
There may be a lot of walking, but you are out there doing what you can to improve your health and fitness. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the one that is just jogging to lose weight:
It is great that you want to be lighter, but you are making efforts towards running that puts you waaay ahead of the folks still on the couch. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the one that only runs for the social aspect:
Yes, you always run at “conversational pace” and you seem to be more happy at the beer garden after the run, but you are still out there. You are there two or three times a week. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the one that runs EVERY 5K because races are fun:
Yes, you, … you 5K freak! Even if you only run once a week, you are out there consistently. You participate, you run, you help raise funds for charity, and you are a part of the running community. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the Half-Maniacs:
You know who you are. You are the one that does as many half marathons each year as you can afford to do. You supplement your appetite for half marathons by running more half marathons. At whatever pace you choose, you are out there doing it. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the Marathoner and the Ultra-Marathoners:
People think you are nuts. I think they are right. I love you just the way you are. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To the speed-demon, driven by the quest for age-group glory or more:
I get it. You push long and hard. Sometimes you overdo it. So what. You rock the world and sometimes the world rocks back. To me it matters less that you win; it matters more that you try to improve. You try with all of your might. You have earned my respect, Runner.
To everyone that tries to run, for the ones in wheelchairs, the ones with guides, the ones with knee problems,… people of all shapes and size, people of all ages, genders, … anyone that runs in any way, shape or form:
You have earned my respect, Runner.
“Train smart, eat well, & enjoy the run!” — P. Mark Taylor