Runners are weird…or should I say…kooky?

Whether you are a member of the running community or an outsider looking in, you probably have realized at one time or another that running is a whole different world. Runners do things that non-runners think are nuts. But that’s OK. From practicing a pre-race ritual to running in subzero weather, we know we can come across as crazy. And we don’t really care.

Chances are you’ve done or witnessed one or more of the odd things we do:

1. Slather on BodyGlide. If you’ve run long distances, you know what I’m talking about. We rub BodyGlide everywhere to prevent a bothersome blister from ruining our race. But we always seem to miss that one little spot….

2. Make the woods our bathroom. How should I say this politely? I guess I can’t. Runners use the restroom behind trees. Runners poop in the woods. Often. Running makes you have to go; there is no getting around it.

3. Day drink. I know I’m not the only runner who partakes in some post-race revelry. If we finish a race at 9 or 10 a.m., the time of day isn’t stopping us from enjoying free beer.

4. Obsess over GPS. People with iPhones think they’re inseparable with their technology? They’ve got nothing on runners. We’re neurotic about pausing and restarting our GPS watches. I stop mine at lights, even if it is for a brief millisecond. I also cannot end a run unless the mileage on my GPS watch has totaled a whole number. Reach my house at 3.82 miles? Nope, can’t stop yet. Gotta circle my cul-de-sac until I reach four (meanwhile getting weird looks from my neighbors…)

5. Dress up in costumes. So many races are themed, which is awesome! But even in regular races, you will see the casual tutus, bridal outfits, dog costumes, etc. The best costume I ever saw was a dad dressed up as Little Bo Peep with his wife and two daughters as the sheep. Doesn’t get much better than that.

6. Wear the same underwear. I know multiple runners (including myself) who wear the same underwear for each race. It’s like a good luck charm. Plus, once we find any kind of apparel that’s comfortable, we buy 50 pairs of the same thing. If it works, don’t change it.

7. Perform pre-race rituals. Some rituals include: eating a peanut butter and banana sandwich for breakfast, listening to a certain pump-up song before heading to the start line, completing a series of 10-second stretches to loosen our muscles, and retying our shoes five times to make sure they are not too tight but tight enough. Every ritual must be completed before the gun goes off. We don’t take chances on having a bad run.

Call us crazy, kooky, odd…we don’t care. We take pride in our ability to run, and we know that the little things can make a difference. So we’ll continue to smear BodyGlide on our things and spread peanut butter on our toast. If it shaves a second off of our PR, you know we’re gonna keep doing it, no matter how weird we seem.