Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Your Runner Personality

Are you a different person when you stride out your door, laces laced, tights tight and GPS GPS...ed? I think I am. By day, I am a mild-mannered (sometimes) educator with a heart of gold (more like silver, but still a precious metal). By run, I am a man-on-a-mission; a stone-cold mile-slaying robot from the future; a carnivorous devourer of all that is mileage; an individual with a single-minded approach that is both insane and maniacal to the uninitiated. Okay, so that was a bit of morning-hyperbole, but I am certain different from one aspect of my life to the next.

I started thinking about this after an article I read regarding the running community and its acceptance/embracing of social media (don't have the link, but it just popped up while using the app Stumbleupon). I won't go into the article too much because the topics are different, but it was more of a catalyst for my own thoughts. While the article was about how social media aids in the running communities desire to meet each other and share our passion, I was more interested in the personalities that come along with the different aspects of our lives.


I think we are all a little like Michael Keeton in Multiplicity, just without the clones and piss-poor dialogue. Instead, we embody those clones inside our squishy core. Every day, we head off and act professional in whatever career/job we "choose" to suffer-through. Then we come home, maybe act like a father/mother, or a wife/husband. Later, you may go out with some gender-aligned friends for a few drinks and your "friend personality" takes over. Having running in the mix is no different - we each have a runner personality, and I think runners are the only ones that can understand this.

Like I alluded to, my runner-self is a bit more intense than my teacher-version. I go out for a run with a purpose, and I thrive in that regard. If I plan on running 15 miles, I am going to get it done no matter what. I also have blinders on when I am trudging along; I appreciate the world around me, enjoy the sights and smells, but I am in the zone. Running appeals to me because it is such a great way to disconnect and remove myself from reality for awhile. While some people use drugs or video games, I choose to strap on some weird-ass shoes with toes, and subject myself to discomfort and pain; am I a masochist? Are we all masochists? Maybe. Just not to the extent of this guy:


How different is your runner personality? Does it leak into your other personas? It does for me! Maybe it is the endorphins, but I think running has made me a far more upbeat person. Additionally, I am a bit more on the random side now, as I do and say things that are reflective of the insanity put into running. This part is hard to explain, but essentially it just makes me more of a verbal risk taker, and I am far more honest. In essence, we runners are all like Superman, and if you were Superman, wouldn't you be a little more confident as Clark Kent? Maybe even a little cocky in the knowledge that you do things other can't? Yeah, we've earned that right, I think.


So, what kinds of personalities do you have? How do you differentiate between them? Do you have any conflicts?

Training:
This last week was a mixed bag. I got through my 15 mile long run without any major issues, but I had to skip a run last week in order to rest an ailing Achilles. I have been icing this portion of my leg, much like I did with my knee, and I am confident that it won't be a major issue, but I just need to be careful. I still continued with my lifting/cross-training, and I have started to really emphasize the work on my core. This week will be a good test of my legs, as I have a time trial, and my long run goes down a bit in mileage. I may also be running a 9 mile trail run on Sunday, so I am excited about that.

Questions:
What would you liken your runner personality to?

How have your changed since becoming a runner?

Apparently this is a half-marathon week for some training plans; do you have one planned?

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

16 comments:

  1. Great post! :D
    Running has made me BELIEVE in myself much more. I struggle with self confidence when it comes to thinking I'm good/smart enough for my career/job..that kinda thing. For some reason, after doing looong runs, it makes me believe that I can do A LOT of things because I never, ever, ever, ever thought I'd be a "runner".

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    1. I love hearing how much running has helped people! We should all be proud of ourselves for sure. Now you are a runner, and no one can take that from you!

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  2. This is super interesting and I never really thought of it this way. Hmm... I guess I could say I am a pretty confident person when it comes to abilities in work but in running I totally doubt myself.

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    1. I think everyone should doubt themselves when it comes to running because most of us aren't the fastest person on the planet! Just stay humble, understand who you are, and realize that you will get out of it what you put in.

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  3. I feel like running just allows me to give expression to the part of me that is easy going and enjoys being alone. That part of me doesn't deal well with social pressures or high expectations. The other areas of my life are very cut throat and I'm forced to compete even though it is very unnatural to me. So maybe I only have one personality--the type B personality--but I"m living in a type A world, so run lets me, well, run away from it! Great post!

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    1. Sounds like running is entirely intertwined with who you are, which I love and find very interesting!

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  4. This is a great post and really got me "thinking". My "non-runner" and "runner" personality definitely align with one another. I am an extrovert, I am loud, I like to have fun, and that really plays into running for me. I run because I LOVE it, but also because I have "fun" with it. Yes I hop on the treadmill and to 10 miles - it is not AWFUL for me - it is FUN. I crank up some great music, sing out loud, dance a little, and just "go with it". It makes me laugh when my legs are killing and I say out loud - "shut up and run Mel" ~ and so I do.

    I definitely think running has given me more of a confidence - I feel very proud my legs will take me miles, and miles, and miles and guess what - NOT everyone does that. When I finish a race or long run - I feel like "yep I got this" and "I got every other crazy thing going on in my life". I can tackle runs and I can tackle life - head on and be confident - running helped me get to this point.

    All in all - I am crazy, I act a fool, I am obsessed with running but bottom line - I am enjoying life and having fun:)

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    1. I would have never guessed this about you ;) I would love to go for a run with you because it sounds like a blast!

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  5. I have to say that running has definitely changed my life for the better...through it I have made lifelong friendships and it has also helped me become a confident, stronger, more well rounded athlete. I am not sure about what 'type' of runner I am...maybe a type B! I used to be really strict with training plans but after dealing with a sidelining injury from overtraining last year I know when to back it off and take more rest if need be. It's all about balancing that fine line! Take care of that Achilles my friend!

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    1. So glad running has done so much for you!

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  6. Oh no! Hope your Achilles is ok 0.0 Mine has gone back to normal last week, hopefully everything will be fine with yours :)

    Haha! I don't know what kind of personality I have when I run. I'd say I'm uber jolly and happy. I'm sure I do a little bit of skipping while I run. It also depends if I'm on the treadmill or outside because outside I do more fun, enjoyable runs while I do speedwork on the treadmill. Running definitely makes me much more confident as others have mentioned.

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  7. I think my runner and non-runner selves are pretty similar: driven, dedicated, and oh boy do they love having a plan. :) I do think that running helped me a LOT while I was in grad school. Research (especially in the biological sciences) can be ridiculously tedious, frustrating, and often subject to whims outside your control. Running, however, is controlled, methodical, and by following a solid training plan, your distances will increase and your times will drop. This "reward for effort" certainly helped me stay positive during a discouraging time of life!

    Take care of the Achilles...lots of stretching!!!

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  8. Great post! Running for me has allowed me to relax a little bit and it also have given me self confidence that I lacked before.

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  9. I have this totally funny vision of you running down the street as Iron Man! I definitely see a slightly different personality emerge when I run. I'm much more confident and open to meeting new people (well, other runners!), I'm really focused but also calm and just in tune with my surroundings. These things have carried over into my *normal* life, which is why I believe running is so much more than a hobby or form of fitness, but a lifestyle.

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  10. I think running helps me stay focused and builds my confidence. Like Holly mentioned, I think it is nice to have a plan for those of us who are driven and dedicated. I love that running gives me a chance to enjoy the outdoors and explore new areas for runs or races.

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  11. I am not a competitive person but my "runner" personality can be. I push myself to reach my goals and feel like a failure if I don't so I just don't let that happen. :)

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