When my husband and I got married almost 19 years ago, neither of us ran. In fact, we had skillfully perfected the art of sitting on the couch, drinking beer and watching Melrose Place (well, I watched; he made fun of it). Over time, I became a runner, then he did. Thankfully, we can find common ground in the odd/annoying/predictable things that runners do.
That being said, if I were single and contemplating marrying an RT (Runner Type), there are some things I would surely want to know beforehand:
1. Disgusting habits are commonplace.
You may think you know your RT very well…until you witness her during or after a run. Your RT will blow snot out of her nose, fart, have extreme BO and often sprint desperately for the bathroom. This behavior is all very normal in the running world but may be slightly unattractive, disgusting and unromantic to the running outsider. (See my post about 8 Raunchy Things Runners Do And Why.)
2. There will be laundry. Tons of it.
If you marry an RT, expect to do double the amount of laundry. Running is messy. It tends to soil clothing and make it stink. As a result, the laundry basket will be piled high with sports bras, shorts, tights and socks. You can even expect to find the occasional empty GU packet or used Band-Aid (nipple chafing, anyone?) that gets inadvertently washed in the washing machine.
3. Annoying acronyms will arise.
If you marry an RT, you will likely be confused during pillow talk and happy hours if you do not learn such acronyms as BQ, DNF, DNS, PR, DFL, LSD, VO2 and PW. A sample sentence your RT might throw at you could be:
I attempted to BQ and get a PR but ended up getting a PW when I came in DFL.
4. Trauma will come from injury.
Most likely, at some point, your RT will become injured and will be unable to run. This inability will likely result in crying, anger, depression and the RT’s urge to punch other runners she sees outside. Do not take this behavior personally.
5. You better like to ride your bike slowly.
If you marry an RT, and especially if your RT is training for a half or full marathon, you may very likely be asked to be her support crew on her long runs (i.e., LSDs). Expect to ride your bike alongside your RT for 20 miles at 6 mph (that is, 200 minutes, or 3 hours and 20 minutes) while handing her GUs, water bottles, Kleenex, tampons and toilet paper.
6. If you have a foot fetish, you are in trouble.
Your RT will have disgusting feet. She will be covered in blisters and bunions. Several toenails may be missing. You might even be asked to rub these feet on occasion, so be prepared (rubber gloves are helpful).
7. Let’s hope absence does make the heart grow fonder.
Should you chose to forgo your biking duties (see #5), just know that she will be missing for hours at a time during long runs. You may often feel like you have been widowed, and you may even find yourself jealous of running. This feeling is completely natural and should subside during periods of taper, recovery and injury.
8. Running is expensive.
Your RT will spend a lot of money on running crap. You may think that running requires only shoes, shirts and shorts, but you are naive. There will be watches, race entry fees, fancy shoes, gels, gym memberships, coaches, PT appointments, massages and fuel belts, just for starters.
9. Vacations are planned around races.
If you marry an RT, there will inevitably come a time when you are planning a vacation and the RT starts to suggest destinations based on her upcoming dream races. An example:
Yes, baby cakes, I know we have talked about going to Hawaii for awhile, but there’s this marathon in San Francisco where firefighters give you Tiffany boxes at the finish line, and well, I was kinda thinking we could go there instead.
These nine points are in no way meant to dissuade you from marrying a runner. It helps, however, to know what you’re getting yourself into. Who knows, maybe you will join in and become an RT yourself!
Can you relate to any of these things? Do you have any to add to the list?