Some things that I consider normal as a distance runner are seen as wacky and out of the ordinary by my friends and family. Being a member of cross country and track teams creates a social bubble—inside, the world revolves around running. From the outside, we look like a herd of athletes who get way too excited about the commonly dreaded activity of running. Here's a few odd things that us distance runners partake in, go through, and think about that a lot of people just don't understand.
1. Running makes us happy.
2. A new pair of trainers is better than Christmas and can be compared to running on clouds in heaven.
3. Two miles, extremely hard for some, is simply a warm-up for our workouts. Can't forget two mile cool-downs after, either.
4. During peak mileage, we basically complete half-marathons every weekend for our long runs. The guys go even further.
5. If it's above 50 degrees, we wear shorts.
6. Above 60 degrees—the shirts come off.
7. Watching a 10k race during track season is actually exhilarating.
8. We eat lots of food. Like lots of food.
9. We drink so much water you'd think it would start pouring out of our ears. Hydration is key.
9. Our social life consists mostly of our fellow runners; there's not a lot of time for anything else.
10. We willfully wake up at ungodly hours to beat the heat while running in the summertime.
11. "Off season" doesn't really exist. A short two weeks between cross-country and track and then it's back to the grind.
12. Foam rollers and lacrosse balls are held dear to us.
13. Treadmills are the devil.
14. The devil probably invented ellipticals and stationary bikes, too.
15. Did I mention that we like food?
16. There is a difference between cross-country and track and field. They are not, I repeat, not, the same thing.
17. A PR is one of the greatest feelings in the world, even if it's a half-second faster than our previous finishing time.
18. Like many other athletes, we have a love-hate relationship with ice baths.
19. People think we're crazy.
20. We might be crazy, but we just love to run!