I am the only person in my house who runs. Period. MacGyver used to run years ago but now he hates it and the kid doesn’t like to run either.
MacGyver often teases me, because truth be told, he thinks I run a bit too much. Okay, a lot too much. He will say things like, ‘your knees are going to be shot when you get old’ and ‘when you get older I’m not gonna push you around in your wheelchair because you broke your body with all that running!’
That’s totally fine by me because if his current memory is any indication, he will probably have Alzheimer’s anyway and I don’t want him pushing me around and not remembering where he left my ass, so were all good.
We joke around a lot but fortunately, my family is very supportive of my running. They show up for many of my races and they don’t bitch when I have to get in my training. It’s important to have the support of the people who love you but that doesn’t mean they want to hear about every detail of every single run. Even though they support me, they don’t support me in quite the same way that another runner would.
For instance, MacGyver always asks me, ‘how was your run’ as soon as I get back. I usually limit my response to just ‘fine’ because I know he doesn’t really want to know how at mile two I wanted to quit and then at mile four I had the fastest mile in 3 weeks, or how I finished strong and felt like I could go on for at least five more miles. No, I’ve learned over time that he doesn’t really want to hear all about that and neither does the kid. Instead I say just fine or I focus on the things that I know will interest them.
Last summer, there a pack of coyotes in the park and if you left early enough in the morning you would see them. I saw them quite a few times and I would always come home and tell MacGyver about the encounters and how cool it was. He was mesmerized by the fact that they didn’t run off but were actually curious about all the runners who were in the park before the sun came up. After a while, I didn’t even have to mention anything because he would excitedly asked me about the coyotes as soon as I walked in the door. And we had similar conversations regarding a fox that would run beside me down in Venice. Wildlife is a big hit with MacGyver and a sure way to keep him interested in my running.
The Kid on the other hand likes to hear about the funny things that happen when I’m out running, or the insects that I see. He was particularly interested in the time I saw the elusive red widow spider and the time I saw a huge infestation of dung beetles. And anytime I fall down, he loves to hear about it. Fortunately, that’s often. With my Mom, I talk about my running clothes and running shoes. She loves seeing all of my clothes and she loves to help me pick out cute things to run in and outfits to wear for races. She also loves hearing about the styles and brands that I like because she shops as much, or more, than I do and she often finds things on sale for me.
With my tech savvy friends I talk about my Garmin watches, heart rate monitors and other gadgets. With my analytical friends I talk about my graphs and charts and training but I’m sure you get the point.
Not all of your family and friends are going to be runners but you can still find things about running that will interest them and not bore them to tears. And who knows, maybe if you talk about the things that interest them, they’ll get curious and you’ll eventually turn them into runners too.
Do your family and friends run?
Is your family supportive of your running and training?