There is a particular female runner who I see nearly every run. She runs with two other girls, but she is always in the same spot in the running pack - the outside. As you can imagine, at that time of the morning the sun is not out to illuminate much, but the trail lights are all in working order and provide good light. This aformentioned runner wears what I kindly refer to as a "miner's light" on her head. I'm sure it has a snazzy, sporty, technical running name, but I think "miner's light" works good enough.
The "pack of three" as I'll call them, are always running in the opposite direction of me. When I see them up ahead I always roll my eyes and mutter to myself. "Oh great, here she comes!" The three of them run side-by-side, taking up the width of the trail with lots of space between them. But for some reason miner's light gets to me the most. Perhaps because she's on the closest to me. I know she sees me, but yet she never moves, "THERE'S ROOM TO MOVE OVER!" I always want to scream, but it never comes out. And she just waves at me as I have to tiptoe on the edge of the trail hoping I don't trip on a stick or something. Seriously. Is it really that hard to move just a little bit?? 12 inches, that's really all I ask for, is that really so hard?
With this frustration in mind, here's what I would list as my Top 10 Runner's Etiquette Rules (a couple of these are borrowed):
- In a group run, don't take over the road/sidewalk/trail. On sidewalks, especially, single-file it. Leave room for someone to pass or otherwise get by without being run off the trail! (HELLO?! Are ya feelin' me miner's light girl?!)
- If you are injured - it's okay to whine a little. After that shut up. Everyone has their own problems.
- Don't assume because someone is slower they want your coaching advice. Speed is not an indicator of knowledge. Slower does not mean dumber.
- Don't wear really noisy clothing. If your running suit is so loud that you think some is chasing you, don't you think other runners might be alarmed as well?
- Don't run through puddles and splash other runners unless you want to be chased and dunked.
- They invented deoderant for you to use. Nothing is worse than a having to hold your breath to cruise past a runner who wears more Ben Gay than clothing. Likewise, don't wear 10 ounces of cologne either, you don't want someone to puke on you as they pass by.
- Don't rock out too hard with your tunes. Other runners do not necessarily find your squelching rendition of "Eye of the Tiger" particularly pleasing.
- If you are running with a partner it is not necessary to yell your conversation to them. I don't really need to know about the people who got busy in the stairwell in your building.
- Don't run thru wet cement. Not particularly a running shoe enhancement unless you are wanting to add a little weight training to your run.
- "Looking good" is acceptable encouragement - (Unless of course you catch someone whizzing, or it is yelled by a passerby in a speeding car). "Get the Lead out!" is not. (In either situation...)