The Neighborhood Runner: A freak, a weirdo, an anomaly…the extra in everyone else’s movie

To say I ran the scenic route of the neighborhood would be an understatement; warm-up, tempo and cool-down all run on a mile loop. Okay, it was a tad over one mile but by the end of it I think I could double as the neighborhood patrol for the night. I also almost hit the same darn trash can about six times…please people, can’t you place these things more conveniently for your kind runner friends?!

runner

Tired, or just dizzy? ;)


Runners can tread that fine line of being unnoticed, we blend into the background, the extras in the movies of everyone else’s lives. Well, that is until some person’s idea of a compliment comes in the form of a hoot and holler out of their moving vehicle.

Question: To those guys yelling ‘Yea Baby!’ as they whiz by, what do they really hope to achieve? That if they yell it enough times eventually some runnerchick is going to suddenly start chasing their car in the hopes of landing a date?

Jokers and hollerers aside, to most people the neighborhood runners is usually thought of at ‘that person’ who runs by as they water their lawn.

The nut who is up running the streets as they nurse their coffee, rubbing out their eye crusties, and begrudgingly heading off to work.

The idiot who’s then back out for a double dose of insanity as they pull back into their garage cursing at their boss for making them work late.

A runner is the weirdo who leaves on Sunday morning off running when they grab the newspaper, then the same weirdo who is finally returning home, admittedly worse for wear, hours later as said neighbor is polishing off their BLT lunch.
runner legs
Their neighborhood runner is that person who gets a touch of scorn from Betty the Housewife for wearing those shorts that are just way too short, don’t they know that? Are they trying to make some kind of statement, like, “Oooh, look at me and my legs!” [Editor's note: No, actually we wear these shorts chaffage because if you're ever run in long shorts you probably have scars. That said, yea, we do look pretty good in them though. ;) ]

The freak doing some 10 odd laps around the block. This is just your kindly neighborhood runner…happy to be an extra in your movie, thank you very much. :)

1) Do you live in a more suburban neighborhood or city? Do you know many of your neighbors, are any of them runners, and are you thought of as ‘that runner’ around the block?

2) Do you like doing loops for your runs? Does it depend on the kind of run you’re doing?
I actually don’t mind doing loops for hard workouts…I’ve had to do 10mile tempo’s on the track and by now my brain’s pretty good at ‘numbing’ out monotony. That said, loops are harder to do for easy/recovery runs.

3) Would you rather do a tempo or longer run on the track or on the treadmill?

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12 Responses to The Neighborhood Runner: A freak, a weirdo, an anomaly…the extra in everyone else’s movie

  1. I don’t mind the monotony of loops too much – especially if I’m doing a specific workout that day. But I don’t like running past the same people time after time – the first couple times is fine but then they start commenting!

  2. Hey Cait!! I am like the only person that lives on my road that runs. I live out in the woods so running in the daylight is most definitely something that I do. I do have a couple of man creepers that when I do go out to run I can smell their smoke in the air. Eek! Um, who smokes at like 5:00 in the morning!
    When I head to the track, I always fear butt jiggle, so I like it to be dark there. :)
    Have an awesome day!

    • BANISH those butt jiggle fears…trust me girl, ur quads are runner quads and primed to bust out dem miles, so people are only in awe of how much u’re burning up that track! :)

  3. Love the visual of you as the neighbourhood nutbag! They’re all jealous of you ;-)

    I try to avoid loops, but if I’m coming back from injury, I run on grass, usually around an oval. Then I count the laps, listen to music, think… whatever. I’m not going to stop until I’m done, so I try and enjoy it, regardless of the scenery!

    …sounds like you had a good workout

  4. I was that runner back in my last area! In fact, I ran past the home of a track kid I coached. He usually didn’t run his neighborhood (but he ran well at track practice, which is what counted), and at practice he’d talk about how he saw me out running. It was neat to be noticed, runners always notice other runners in neighborhoods.

    More people run here, but I usually run with a training group since I’m new in town, or I run on a paved path that’s about 3 miles. Sometimes I still do the neighborhood though.

  5. Yeah, I’m a semi-weirdo, but there’s a whole group of bigger and faster weirdo’s around here, so I blend in.

  6. BTW, I saw your art on the Runners Edge page. Kinda neat. Well done.

  7. I kind of know the other runners around me – I’m lucky to live near to some great running routes and you get used to seeing the same faces there on a Saturday morning!

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