Seven Things I Learned The Hard Way As A Runner

4 years ago

I started thinking of all the random things that I learned AFTER running a handful of marathons.  In November 2011, I wrote a list of what your mother never told you about running marathons, I had only run two of them.  Now that I have planned my sixth marathon, I have more to add.  Opting not to follow these suggestions won't kill you. But why make unnecessary trouble for yourself?


1. Wear sunblock for every long run, even on a cloudy day.


My NJ Marathon "tan."

Hey, at least I'm not Snooki-orange.


2. A high ponytail is like a soaking wet whip against your neck after awhile. Before I cut my hair, I took to wearing it low in two side-buns instead of pulling all the hair on my head together in one place.  A tight ponytail also causes a lot of breakage because of the tension on all of those lovely locks. You'll have plenty of time for hair loss in your future. No need to start it now.


3. Embrace your inner (shameless, completely unaware) inner child. Why? Because you are going to look gross. You need to learn not to care.  When you were four years old, you didn't care what you looked like while you were doing something you really wanted to do, right? You just did your thing and didn't think "what if I look bad." In fact, once you embrace the fact that you look kinda gross, you won't see it as gross. You'll just see it as what happens while you are running.


You need to get over the fact that you will look like 

just peed yourself several times over.



4. Boobs/breasts/cans/jugs, no matter the size, have no business bouncing dramatically during a run. (Yes, smaller ones bounce too, and HURT after all that bouncing.) Invest in the right bra. And wear it, even if it isn't the most flattering piece of underwear you own.


My Handful bra is my go-to bra. Highly recommended for the A-B ladies.

It keeps things in place without smooshing you so much that people might question your gender.



5. If your nose runs a lot, put chapstick on your nose. And on the area on your hand that you use to wipe it. Also, get yourself a handana. (I know I know, the snot rocket thing works for many of you... but I don't have snot... I just have an occasional slight drip.)


Handana is awesome, but really- try the chapstick thing too.



6. Don't pull our socks up too high so that they are tight against the tips of your toes. This can cause them to be too tight against the tips of your toenails and cause toenail loss. 


7. One more tip about feet: callouses are there for a reason. Leave them there. Do not fall for the belief that your feet need to be soft and pretty. A runner's feet are anything but soft. (I will spare you much trauma and refrain from posting photos for #6 or #7.)

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