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3269 Views 15 Replies Latest reply: May 4, 2012 7:58 AM by DSJ80 1 2 Previous Next
Francessmom Pro 177 posts since
Feb 11, 2009
Currently Being Moderated

Apr 15, 2012 1:56 PM

What's up fellow runners!?

Today I switched up my running venue due to road construction in my town.  I headed to a nearby state park that has a 4.3 mile multi-purpose trail/loop for my planned 9 mile run.  The paved trail is used by runners, cyclist, and walkers but closed to autos.  The majority of traffic was walkers many with dogs and kids.  When I run through my town I always try to make eye contact with people I encounter.  I usually smile, nod or wave and sometimes give a quick "hi" or "good morning".  Most people will respond back in kind. Today the runners I encounter seemed totally unfriendly.  Many ran past without even glancing at me.  Some looked at me but didn't return my smile, nod or hello.  Since I was covering many miles today, I started keeping statistics in my head about whether my fellow runners returned my greetings. From the time I started counting, I passed 21 runners total and only 5 returned my greeting - I even counted mere head nods.  Ten runners never even looked in my direction.  The remaining 6 runners looked at me but completely ignored my greeting and ran on by. So, fellow runners, what is going on? 





Our greatest glory is not in never falling but in rising every time we fall.
Confucius

6/11/2011 - Warrior Dash Pennsylvania - 52:26

6/24/2011 - CBA 5K - 27:11

8/7/2011 - Danskin Sherox Triathlon Philadelphia - 1:54:16

11/5/2011 - Penn Homecoming 5K - 28:46

11/13/11 - Media Mud Stain 5 mile - 53:39

05/06/2012 - Broad Street Run 10 Mile - 1:36:11

06/03/12 - See Chicks Run 10 K - 54:23

06/26/12 - CBA 5 K - 26:28

09/16/12 - Rock & Roll Half Marathon Philadelphia - 2:03:07

  • Jasko123 Legend 461 posts since
    Apr 18, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Apr 15, 2012 2:11 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    Have you heard about the new runner's universal hand sign?  It is a thumbs up over the heart.  (Bikers, motorcyclists and truckers all have their signals, so hopefully this will catch on). 

     

    A lot of times people are just in their own zone, headphones ablaze and focused on getting through.  I share your frustration, and have experienced similiar situations.  I have so much respect for all my fellow runners that I always take the time to acknowledge their efforts.  I started using the thumbs up over the heart and most just look at me like I am crazy or half raise a hand. 

     

    Well, I think it is a great idea and I am going to keep trying...Runners Unite!

  • linuscatch Pro 143 posts since
    Sep 18, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Apr 15, 2012 2:22 PM (in response to Jasko123)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I agree that people get in their zones, as I wear head phones too when I run.  But, I always make a point to make eye contact and a quick hand wave to anyone I pass or run by.  And if someone passes me, I always nod out of respect for their ability to run faster.

    Life is too short to not be civil and courteous to each other.  As I was giving it all I had today in last mile of my first HM, someone I passed said "way to finish strong".  Boy did that make me feel good and help keep my energy up.  I waved back at him to say thanks.

    No matter how many fellow runners ignore my gestures, I will keep doing it.  Running is such an alone sport at times, but when we all take the 2 seconds to wave, say hi, or smile, it can feel like one big team event where everyone is on the same side. And who doesn't feel good when someone smiles back?

    Take the high road, smile, and keep waving!

  • skypilot77 Legend 1,077 posts since
    Dec 16, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Apr 15, 2012 6:30 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    What other sport -- while the game is in play do you expect a participant to take time an acknowledge someone saying "Hi"?

     

    Do you expect a person taking a jump-shot to say hi; a golfer while putting; a batter trying to run out a double?

     

    Why is there the expectation that while engaged in the sport/activity of running that someone should exchange pleasantries?

     

    When I am running I am real serious. I happen to think the road is a hugely dangerous place. From the cracks and bumps in the pavement, to the edge of the pavement -- which can bring disaster to a knee or ankle. To the cars whizzing by -- while I assume they are on phones or eating Big Macs and not paying attention. I run using my ears -- listening to the speed of cars from behind me, as much as I am paying attention to cars I see in front of me.

     

    While stopped or walking I will chat up a storm with anyone. But not while running. Another runner is simply another variable that needs to be considered in the safety issue.

     

    I certainly understand how the sanguine-leaning people are put-off without the acknowledgement coming back from other people. But do not take it personally. There are other dynamics going on besides receiving back a pleasantry.





  • Debm2011 Legend 361 posts since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Apr 16, 2012 11:43 AM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I always nod, smile, wave or say hi/good morning/etc. as I pass close by another runner.  Obviously I don't wave and shout across the street, but if we are passing within inches of eachother on the sidewalk I certainly offer a pleasantry.  I almost always get one back (or the other runner initiates) but when there's no response, I don't let it bother me (too  much).  I still won't stop being polite. 

     

    Francessmom, sorry to go off topic, but I see you did a mud run in Media which is my home town!  Where did they hold it?  And assuming from your race list you live in the greater Phila area - do you know of any good 5k's the last week of June or first week of July?  I may be coming down for a vist and it would be fun to fit in a race while I'm there.  Thanks!

  • BOSNPM We're Not Worthy 2,482 posts since
    Nov 20, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    5. Apr 16, 2012 11:58 AM (in response to Debm2011)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I have to, it's a southern thing.   Not so much on the track, but most anywhere else.

  • kris0511 Amateur 20 posts since
    Mar 10, 2012
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Apr 16, 2012 12:06 PM (in response to BOSNPM)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I agree, its a southern thing . I don't do to much on the track, but when I do, I'm usually the only crazy one out there running the stairs of the stadium and the track. Its hard-wired in our DNA . Good ole' southern hospitality.

  • _Miles Pro 147 posts since
    Jul 26, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Apr 16, 2012 2:18 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I try to smile at everyone I pass whether walker or runner. Sometimes it is a struggle for me to stop my mouth breathing for a few and make something that will look like an obvious smile when in my brain I am just trying to keep going. Sometimes though I wait to smile until they make eye contact and that just doesn't always happen. So maybe people's timing is off. Or maybe, like me, they are so busy struggling to keep moving that they try to smile and it's not even recognizably a smile. I run on the street with cars sometimes and agree eye contact is even more important then. I usually need to signal to the oncoming walker/runner which one of us is going to go out in the street a bit (my opinion is it should be the jogger if there is a walker and a jogger, or if there are two joggers then it should be whoever is facing oncoming traffic, but sometimes that gets me a glare from joggers!)

     

    Don't expect a wave from me though or certainly not any words, talking is not something I do particularly well while jogging (usually comes out some sort half whisper half grunt if I haven't been saying anything for a while) and waving seems a bit over the top when you are just passing some stranger. Though I do the "thanks" wave to cars who see me and stop to let me cross. Thanks drivers letting me pass by and not glaring at me, you are in the minority!

     

    Honestly though lack of waves or smiles from folks is usually the least of my concerns, running is still something that doesn't come entirely naturally to me and I spend most of the run in my own head talking myself into keeping going. Maybe a lot of the runners you passed are having the same conversation with themselves.

     

    -Miles





    C25k Completed 08/19/11

    OHR Completed 10/23/11

    5k 09/24/11: 39:10

    2011: 280 miles, ~14:00 mm avg

    2012: 321.2 miles (so far)

  • VeggieChick81 Pro 130 posts since
    Jan 28, 2009
    Currently Being Moderated
    10. Apr 16, 2012 2:57 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I remember on one run (flat beach point back to point) I was pleasantly going along and couldn't understand why not one runner would reciprocate my friendly eye glance fellow runner gesture that I have always done...well I understood when I turned around at the end of the beach to run back and the sun was directly in my eyes...It was miserable. No joke the sun was so strong my eyes were so squinted I will blame any early signs of crows feet on that one day :) I've also had runs where I'm really trying to hit a certain pace and feel like I'm ready to puke. The Pope could have passed me and I probably wouldn't realize it.

     

    Its always nice to make a friendly gesture, I just don't let it bother me if I'm ignored, for the reasons above :)





    "If you don't run you rust" - Tom Petty

  • Debm2011 Legend 361 posts since
    Jun 12, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    11. Apr 16, 2012 8:27 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    Thanks Marie.  I'll take a look at those - the 8k in Swarthmore might work.

     

    Happy Running!

  • Jasko123 Legend 461 posts since
    Apr 18, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    12. Apr 19, 2012 4:43 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I agree Francess, it is just plain rude.  Hopefully, the other factors that we have all suggested are contributing influences that could explain some of the reasons.  However, I have noticed a pervasive arrogance that seems to be infiltrating our beloved sport of running over the past several years, and it is not overly inviting or positive. 

     

    Perhaps I am taking greater notice of the habits of fellow runners or paying more attention during race events, but I feel a responsibility to encourage others while also mentoring newcomers.  It seems that the sense of unity is typically defined in groups, smaller cliques of competitors or organizational members, for example.  This is fine for connecting some, but does not really promote any sort of broad outreach or recognition to pull us all together as runners. 

     

    I will continue to acknowledge all runners (walkers, joggers, bikers and so forth).  I applaud their efforts and think we should share in celebrating our abilities. 

     

    Thank you for initiating this wonderful discussion on an important topic!

  • linuscatch Pro 143 posts since
    Sep 18, 2011
    Currently Being Moderated
    13. Apr 29, 2012 2:37 PM (in response to Jasko123)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    Did a 13 mile LR today and waved or said hi to everyone I came across whether they were running or walking their dog.  They all waved or said hi back and almost all smiled!

    Now that wasn't that hard, was it?

  • raf66 Expert 49 posts since
    Jan 15, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    14. May 1, 2012 1:55 PM (in response to Francessmom)
    What's up fellow runners!?

    I always smile and/or nod my head when passing other walkers, runners, etc.  I even get the attention of, and waive to, drivers who pull up to a cross street in my path so as to decrease potential dangers.  I typically don't say anything to other runners as talking while running is kind of a foreign concept to me (as in, I struggle mightily to do it). 

     

    I'll admit that I find runners who don't acknowledge another runner's existence when passing going the opposite direction and sharing the same basic space of earth to be rude, boorish and somewhat off-putting.  Having said that, however, one thing I've learned in my 46 years on this planet is that you never really know what's going on with someone at a particular moment in time so I try not too judge too harshly.  Maybe they're so "in the zone" that they don't notice me.  Maybe they have incredible turmoil going on in their life and are in such deep thought that my utterly forgettable face doesn't register on their radar. Maybe they're so worn out from their run that they have neither the energy nor the inclination to acknowledge me.  Conversely, there are a plethora of rude, boorish people in society and maybe you just happened to have encountered a larger-than-normal sampling of them "in the wild".  Who knows.

     

    Don't get discouraged by other runners' lack of acknowledgement, and certainly don't take it personally. It's certainly not a reflection on you since they don't even know you.  Just continue being one of the "considerate people" out on the trail. 

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