Reluctant Runners Series #6: The Dog Ate My Homework & Other Unlikely Tales


Published on September 25th, 2013

It always starts out the same way. As soon as you say it everyone nods in agreement. It sounds strong, seems valid, and goes down smooth.

You’re feeling pretty smug that you’ve pulled one over on everyone until… someone calls you out. What am I talking about? Excuses of course!

As a reluctant runner, I’ve perfected the art of excuses. Some days I can even fool myself. And I’m not talking about those amateur excuses like, “I’m a little tired”, or “I’m going to happy hour instead”. People can spot those from a mile away, and the next thing you know you’ve been guilt-tripped into hitting the pavement. Instead, I’m now the queen of the completely legitimate and sometimes noble excuse like, “I need to take my car for a check-up”, or “ My friend is having a hard time and needs to talk”. Now, I’m not saying that these excuses are lies. Far from it. The best excuses are drawn from reality. And I’m not saying that these things don’t legitimately need to get done. All I’m suggesting is that maybe, just maybe, we could accomplish them before or after our run.

As reluctant runners, we’re probably not training for any marathons here. We’re just talking about setting aside 30-90 minutes a week, which is less time than it takes to check everyone’s Facebook post or watch the Kardashians make a mess of their lives. It’s funny how none of those things we have to do seems so urgent during our Friday happy hours, but somehow we end up turning into the most devoted friends/car owners/etc just as we’re about to head out for a run.

So the next time you’re about to cancel a run because of some “absolutely essential” task you have to do, ask yourself if it can wait. Honor your commitment to you own health and fitness. Trust me- the rest can wait until you’re back.

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Sharon M

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