JOG? There is no jog. There is only RUN.

Another repeat from my previous blog at the request of a friend. 🙂 In short….just get out there and move folks. That’s all you have to do!

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The word JOGGER irritates me. Big time. And I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one. It’s an ongoing debate. Look at the forums on RunnersWorld.com – when you have oodles and oodles of time – to read people’s inane comments to each other about whether they are runners or joggers.

I think that people use the word JOG to mean “run slowly.” And I understand that in the purest sense of the word a JOG is slower than a RUN. Generally, people use the term JOGGER to distinguish themselves from the 4 minute milers – you know, the Kenyans that race jaguars and such. These every day people just want their audience to know that they are NOT FAST.

Well, who defines fast versus not fast? It’s all relative in my book. I’m pretty sure that my grandmother believes that the rate she’s walking around the mall is fast. I would beg to differ. But, that doesn’t demean her activity or why she’s doing it. I mean, she is in her 80s – so if she wants to call it skydiving, then that’s her prerogative.

To demonstrate, I’ll use pictures of myself. All of these photos were taken in 2009 – at different events. As you look, think about what you would call each activity in the following pictures.

A – National Capital 20 Miler
B – Survivor Harbor 7 (w/Jessica Tanner)
C – Pacers Running Festival(w/Craig & Emma)
D – VA Run Turkey Trot, 2009 (w/Jess Datta & her friend)

Does it look to you like I’m doing something different in each of these pictures? To me, the only difference is the rate at which I’m running. Here are the average paces per mile for the races in each picture:

A: 9:32/mile

B: 11:06/mile

C: A crawl – 2 y.o. Emma’s first kids run

D: 16:19/mile (Yes, I’ve gained tons of weight for this pic – don’t judge….I’m pregnant).

In discussing this blog post with my husband he said, “You should post a picture of someone running a 4 minute mile and then a picture of yourself. Tell people that you’re both running, but that he probably thinks that what you’re doing is jogging. Tell them it’s about perspective.” He’s right, it is about perspective, but I chose not to follow his advice. First, I don’t have any pictures of 4 minute milers and I don’t want to use pictures in my blog where the copyright is questionable. After all, he’s an intellectual property attorney, so somehow I feel like he would be quite upset to find that I violated someone’s copyright just to prove a point. Second, I think that there are a lot of other people out there that wouldn’t get the point because they would believe that the 4 minute miler is running while I am “merely” jogging. And that’s just what I’m trying to debunk here.

What I’m trying to show by these pictures is that my posture is the same. My stance is the same. The movement of my body is the same. BUT, my pace per mile is VERY different. So, it doesn’t matter how fast or how slow I’m moving … I’m still RUNNING.

I could post picture after picture of people at races. People that finish first and people that finish last. They are all running. Not a one of them is jogging.

If your audience is a judgemental lot and thinks that 10 minute miles or slower are a jog … so be it. Frankly, I’m of the belief that if you are MOVING FORWARD … if you are traveling in the direction that your face is facing with the intent of getting some vigorous exercise … then you ARE a RUNNER. Whatever your pace.

When you describe yourself to others as a JOGGER you are demeaning yourself. It’s like you believe that you are not equal to others in our sport. Joggers aren’t serious. Runners are. Joggers are slow. Runners are fast. Why we have to categorize ourselves is beyond me. Shouldn’t we all just BE (and more importantly, let others be). JOG is used to demean what you love. If you didn’t love it, you wouldn’t be talking about it. JOG, JOGGER, JOGGING — you’re just being mean.

So, stop being mean to others and to yourself. Just because you’re doing it only on the weekends, or slower than your neighbor’s brother’s sister-in-law, or just for 5 minutes a day … YOU ARE A RUNNER. Take that knowledge into your next workout. See how it changes your mindset.

Bet you’ll feel like a Kenyan by the end.

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One thought on “JOG? There is no jog. There is only RUN.

  1. ambient music says:

    Hello there, just became aware of your blog through Google, and found that it is truly informative. I’ll appreciate if you continue this in future. Lots of people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

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