On the Joys of Running Short Distances Slowly

Updated: Mar 8, 2019



The other day I bought a new pair of running shoes to replace the ones I’d worn holes through during my senior year. My new shoes are adorable; they’re grey with fuchsia and green accents, and their soles are so springy—they almost run for you.  Almost. 

Once I procured said shoes, I knew I ought to use them. But you must understand this about me—I have a little insecurity about people thinking I’m a “runner” only to discover the unfortunate truth: I run short distances slowly, with intermittent breaks to stretch or dance to a good part in the song I’m listening to.

When the guy at the running store asked if I was training for something special, I said “Nope, not really.” And when he asked me what kind of mileage I did per week, I fixed him with a look of sheepish guilt.

“Less than 8 or 10 miles a week?” He asked with a non-judgmental smile.

“Something like that…” I replied.

Tonight I took my shoes and went for a short run down and back my comically long driveway with the dog. It was remarkably relaxing. I went at my own pace and Daisy sprinted ahead, occasionally turning to look at me with eyes that said “Are you ok?  Why do you two-legs go so slow?”

As I bounded up and down hills with the grace of a particularly uncoordinated gazelle, I thought about my two year middle school foray into the world of competitive cross-country running. The people were nice, but the activity itself was decidedly unpleasant.  If I ignore the side cramps and hill repeats though, I can appreciate that I came away reasonably fit, with a few medals and t-shirts, and a healthy respect for dedicated runners everywhere. Also, I had my Runner’s World magazine subscription.

I have fond memories of reading all about miracle shin splint cures, and how to train for a marathon in three months or less. I learned about all the newest shoes and shorts. And what did I do with this knowledge when I was no longer going to obligatory team practices? Very little. I sat on the couch and read fascinating articles encouraging me to get out and run. Then I kept on sitting.

These days, the magazines are long gone, but still I read blogs written by runners, watch inspirational speeches in which running is recommended as the ideal pastime, and laugh at comics written by a very funny man who runs as penance for eating copious amounts of junk food.  

Am I destined to run across the country in the name of all things painful and difficult? Ehh… probably not. I will however, continue running short distances slowly, enjoy my new shoes, and smile as I read about people who do. 

These are links to the comic, blog, and speech mentioned above. They are brilliant, often funny, and definitely worth a few minutes of your time. 

Like what you see?

Get in touch!

Contact me here

The Awesome List

Some favorite tools, resources, and ideas

© 2019 by Alex Muck.

Here's the privacy policy.

Also, you're great. 

    Typos...    I'm an editing team of one, so they happen occasionally. 

    If you see something wrong, please say something here and I will send you my utmost gratitude, and maybe even a small surprise.