Running is simple right? How could you screw up something that millions of people do every day, without incident? LOTS OF WAYS. Many of us runners take for granted the certain disgusting things we do when we run and the certain things that we are doing horribly wrong. So please, before you start running all willy-nilly, please consult my list and save yourself from imminent embarrassment and humiliation.
1. You are probably tying your shoes wrong
Your shoelaces should be tied in a horizontal or “Reef Knot” fashion and not in “Granny Knot” style. Watch this video from Runner’s World to see what I am talking about. Why use this technique? Your shoelaces will not come undone as easily and you will be less susceptible to injuries on your ankle and blisters on your heel. Do it right.
2. Please be wary of your breathing “technique”
I once was running alongside someone who was breathing so ridiculously loud that I could hear him over my music in my headphones! Now that’s when you need to just calm down and take it easy. His breathing made it so hard to concentrate that I had to run faster to get away from him, which could have thrown my pace off. Many people use the 3:2 method to control their breathing, or three second inhale and two second exhale. This method also helps ward off nasty cramps that can beat even the best runners.
3. Stop chewing gum
Some people think that chewing gum while you run controls your breathing, including myself in the past, but it really hurts more than it helps. Chewing gum is one of the easiest ways to get gas buildup in your stomach and can give you heartburn while running. I think I get enough of that from the food I eat at school. There is of course the choking hazard of swallowing your gum while you are running, but I think we can all manage to avoid that.
5. The water stop
Water stops are usually my best friend during a long race like a half marathon, and can be physically uplifting when you see one up ahead, but people still manage to screw up something simple like drinking water. The water and sometimes sports drink, is given out in plastic cups that are tricky to drink out of on the run for the untrained runner. But a quick squeeze of the cup in the middle makes the cup pour only a small stream into your mouth, therefore eliminating the common error of spilling it all over yourself or choking on the water. If you’ve ever drank from a water station, I guarantee you’ve messed this up at least once.
6. The Farmer’s Blow (proceed with caution)
It’s a cold day and your breathing becomes blocked through your nostrils. Well, you better be able to execute the farmer’s blow properly, or you might end up looking like a fool. This is expertly done by placing your index and middle finger on one nostril, and blowing out the other with plenty of force. Repeat for the other nostril if needed. But please be wary of where you are aiming, no one wants to get blindsided by that. Seriously.
Warning: Not for use on any indoor track.
7. Water belts
Don’t make fun of the runner with the water belt, because they will probably beat you anyways.
8. Indoor tracks
My biggest pet peeve on an indoor track is people who spit on the track. Please don’t ever do that, it’s just disgusting. Also you aren’t outside, so don’t pass gas and just think that everything will be okay. Because it won’t.
Races this week
Tuesday October 26
*Ghosts and Goblins 5k @ 6:30 p.m. (Register at Antioch Shrine Center, 107 East First St., noon-6:15 p.m.)*
Friday October 29
Kettering Rotary’s Run for Your Life 5K @ 6:15 p.m., 2917 Berkley Street, Kettering, Ohio Register here
If you have any pieces of running etiquette or horror stories you would like to share, please comment!