Non-runner friends, co-workers, family members, doctors who just don’t have a clue, strangers on the street…They’ve all told me running isn’t good for me.
I’m sure many of you have had a similar experience in your lifetime, so you know how frustrating it can be. You know what I'm talking about, you say just one little thing about how your hip hurts and they have some snarky comment to say about how if you didn't run so much you wouldn't hurt like that or about their grandmas-sisters-friend who was a runner in her day, etc. Do I bite my tongue and let the comments slide? Or do I try to explain that, actually, running is a pretty healthy (physically AND mentally) activity to be doing?
I think a lot of the negative comments about running are generally well-intended. My non-running friends and family just want me to live a healthy and happy life, not suffer with arthritis or injury in my still somewhat younger years, right? I think people are often misinformed. Sure, if you’re overweight or had knee problems in the past, running can aggravate your joints. And yes, it IS a high impact activity, but that doesn’t mean it’s dangerous. I think there’s also a clump of nay-sayers that are jealous of our commitment to the sport. In all honesty, I don’t know why people say the things they do, but lately it’s really been hitting a nerve with me. I recently had a doctor tell me to quit running for the sake of my hips. Hmm, now I know why I don't like to see the on-call doctor at my office. I've built a strong relationship with my PCP (shes a triathlete herself) who doesn't think I’m causing bodily harm. Don't get me wrong, I’m not saying my hip pain is nothing, that my knees never get achy or that I’m immune to injury. It’s likely that we will all experience some set-back in the course of our running careers, but that doesn’t mean we should quit all together and resign ourselves to the couch. So, stop telling me to stop running.
Also, I'm going to leave this little study published by NPR right here.
So, until my legs fall off, I'll continue pounding the pavement.
Dream Big. Work Hard. :)