Truth time: Other than my immediate family and my two best friends (and obviously you guys), I haven’t talked about my upcoming marathon to anyone. I barely mention it to my roommates, although they know, and most of my friends and classmates don’t know at all. I feel like I talk about it 24/7 on the blog but in real life, it’s not something I share. For the first time last week I posted the image below on my personal Facebook account as part of a promotion for the race (I can get discounts to restaurants- ha). But even so, part of me was hesitant to post even that. I don’t like the attention and I don’t want it to seem like I’m bragging. I fully understand the over-sharing and bragging aspect of running and I never want to fall into that category. But I do want to share parts of my life with people I see regularly. Let me explain…
What I want to tell people is that I’m proud of myself. Regardless of the marathon being the NYC Marathon and all the hoopla surrounding it, I set my mind to something and put in the work. For more than 4 months I’ve sacrificed sleep, braved the Florida summer, tortured my feet, and pushed through mental roadblocks. I’ve somewhat balanced working two jobs, school and a few club commitments as well as training. Sure I’ll be proud of myself when I cross that finish line, but I’m proud of myself NOW. I know I very willingly put myself through training- in fact I paid $$$ for it- but that doesn’t take away from the effort I put in. When I say it all together like that, it 100% sounds like I’m bragging. Hence why I don’t tell people too often.
I feel like even when I just say “I’m running a marathon,” I get more defensive responses than supportive ones. Most of my friends knew about my first marathon and I remember the day I told them (excitedly!) that I just finished my 20 mile training run. I got a few “you’re crazy” comments and some “I hate running” ones as well. Others said turned it around and said things like “I wish I could do that,” or “you’re so good,” immediately making me feel guilty for sharing. But that just might be the nature of sharing personal achievements with people…their responses sometimes (unintentionally) diminish the sense of accomplishment. A 20 mile run is something to be proud of, but a condescending or sarcastic response dampens the mood, you know?
Not everyone likes running and not every runner wants to run a marathon…that’s perfectly OK. Let’s be real, running is not my “life” by any means. I have other things that I’m passionate about to keep me busy. By telling others about my training I do not intend to make them feel “guilty” to the least extent. It’s really not about running the marathon, it’s about celebrating the work I put in during the last four months! This can be applied to so many aspects of life, not just fitness. When you set a goal for yourself (personal, professional, health, etc.) and dedicate time and effort to achieving that goal, you deserve to celebrate!
Therefore, I’m selective in who I share my training with. My parents and sister are my obvious go-to’s, as are my two best friends from high school (I don’t see them often). My friends may not be runners, but they know how hard I’m working. I’ve really enjoyed sharing parts of my training on the blog and connecting with both runners and non-runners who are just supportive people :) But I sincerely hope I don’t come off as bragging.
I do wish I could have shared my training with other people in my life, because it was a big part of my past four months. Seriously, I’m telling people I’m “going to NYC for the weekend,” and don’t mention the race unless they ask about the trip. Sometimes I want people to ask questions and give support, but running is something that has always been very personal for me. I’m not shooting for a specific time goal (more on that soon) and I’m not super fast. I don’t need to please anyone else with my running and no-one’s praise or support will trump the feeling of achieving a goal.
As someone who is an introvert, sharing in general is not my forte. But as I try to build deeper relationships with people I think talking about my personal goals and achievements is something that should be done. Plus, how do I explain *in a socially acceptable way* going to bed at 8:30 on a Friday night? ;)
Do you share your training with people?
How do you balance sharing without bragging in general?