“Are You a Runner?”

This is a question I receive often and I wonder how to respond?   I only learned how to run four years ago, have completed a few 5k and 8k races, and there are a handful of medals at my house – does that make me a runner?  I often do a mix of run and walk during races – does that make me a runner?  I’m in a running club – does that make me a runner?  What exactly is the definition of a runner?  Merriam-Webster defines runner as “a: one that runs: racer, b: base runner, c: ballcarrier.”   Huh.  That didn’t help me so I asked a variety of friends.  They define a runner as:

  • Someone who challenges their bodily limits” – Illinois
  • A long piece of decorative cloth you place on a table or buffet” – Indiana
  • “If you run regularly (at least 2 days a week over the course of a few months or more) you are a runner!” – Kentucky
  • “Someone who runs without anything chasing them… ” – Minnesota
  • One who runs” – Pennsylvania
  • Crazy. They are just plain crazy.  JK! I think a runner is someone who chooses that sport for leisure, stress relief or exercise over other forms.” – Rhode Island
  • NOT by how fast you can run” – Wisconsin

The definition of a runner varies and some may make you laugh!  Whether you are a runner, cyclist, swimmer, triathlete, etc., how others define that sport isn’t important.  What is important is how you define it and your confidence in yourself.

When I am asked the question, “are you a runner?,” I now answer, yes, I am a runner.

Running to finish
Lisa running to finish


Merriam-Webster. (n.d.).  Runner.  Retrieved from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/runner.

One thought on ““Are You a Runner?”

  • January 22, 2018 at 10:22 pm

    I like the last one a friend left … about it not being about how fast you run. A mile is a mile. So the question is, did you run it? OK … you’re a runner.


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