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Fast vs slow, talent vs training – but we’re all in this together.

There’s a load of who-har going around social media at the moment about fast runners vs slow runners and it’s grinding me.

You run, therefore you are a runner.

Fast runners do run drills. Slow runners do run drills.

Fast runners cross train. Slow runners cross train.

Fast runners put the time in. Slow runners put the time in.

Fast runners can be part of a club. Slow runners can be part of a club.

Fast runners get a medal at the end of the race. Slow runners get a medal at the end of the race.

I’m a big believer in talent vs training. That’s not to say that all slow/medium paced runners aren’t talented… some people are just born that way, they have the genes, the body structure, the blood oxygen capabilities. Others don’t and therefore have to work just a bit harder.

Again thats not to discredit the super fast runner. Just because you’re born with the natural talent/ability doesn’t mean you don’t have to work hard.

What I’m trying to say is; Runner A, you can be born with the right genes, muscle fibres, muscular skeletal set up the whole shabam. Turn up, run like the wind and train hard.

Runner B, You might not be at Runner A’s ability and therefore need to put more effort in to reach Runner A.

Runner C, you probably have to work three times as hard to try and keep up but sometimes you just can’t. Probably find that you can excel, better in comparison, in a different sport like weightlifting or whatever. It doesn’t mean you don’t flog your ass in your training runs/races. It also doesn’t mean you can’t jump into Runner B’s group either.

Genes, biomechanics, all that science stuff plays a part.

I’ve been told my biomechanics are rubbish. That running isn’t for me, that I should look at doing a different sport. And that physio is probably right. Who knows, who cares?!

I’m a slow runner. My average mile currently is between 11:30/12:30. My fastest mile, well second fastest mile because I can’t bothered trying to find it on Strava is 10:50. My all time fastest mile was 8:52.

I’ve got hypermobilty, extra flexi tendons and all, my joints aren’t very stable. I’m (what feels like the definition of) injury prone because of this. I have to work hard to keep my muscles strong to keep my joints stable. Not everyone with hypermobilty is a slow runner (there’s some amazing hyper-mobile runners winning half marathons and doing really well with marathons etc!) . But this is a reason why my biomechanics are apparently rubbish. They’ll be more to it as well. I’m Runner C and that’s fine. I’ll probably never see a 7 minute mile. That’s also fine.

But that doesn’t mean that Runner A and Runner B can’t have time in the limelight and be celebrated for their abilities and hard work.

It doesn’t mean other Runner C’s can’t also be in the limelight for their abilities and hard work.

A, B & C – all lace up and run. Therefore we are runners. We run for different reasons. Some are competitive and others not so. There’s no shame in being either. You are no less of a runner because you’re not competing to come first in a race, or even top twenty in your local Parkrun. And there’s no shame about being publicly happy about coming in first or top twenty.

Let’s just celebrate and support each other on our abilities to run.

Links:

Talent vs training

*please lord, I don’t want to offend anyone.

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