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What Not to Say to an Injured Runner

When things happen to you, like an injury that is obvious, it's kind of amazing what tends to happen. Hobbling around in a walking boot is uncomfortable enough, but I have been really surprised at the responses it/I have gotten.

Complete strangers have stopped to ask me what I did to cause my injury. I've had people just stare down at my boot like it was a third boob. I've had people try to joke around, real comedians I tell ya, others like to make comments about getting a matching boot, or that it matches my outfit.

If I tell someone that it is an overuse running injury coupled with being vitamin D deficient as well as other workouts (like plyo) then I get that knowing smug look and nod then something about how running will kill you or some such crap. As if sitting around on your rear eating ho-hos and cheetos won't. But ... I digress and won't touch that tangent today.

Along with some insanely ridiculous comments, I have gotten a fair amount of advice, suggestions, feedback from friends, relatives, strangers, and other runners.

Let me preface myself before I proceed - this is all meant in fun and humor. I am not offended by those of you who've made any of the below comments, I know they were meant from the heart. This is simply me trying to find a bit of light-heartedness right now, something I've been lacking. 

But, since I've been injured, I've come up with a list of things that you should never say to an injured runner. Again, all in fun.



Things NOT to say to an injured runner:

  • Don't brag about your own running miles please. The injured runner is staring at a big fat goose egg for miles week after week knowing they'll never hit the year in miles.
  • Please oh please don't say you "only" got in x number of miles. At a certain point, an injured runner would do just about anything to say they ran a single mile.
  • Please don't proclaim anything remotely close to, "I had an awesome run." I'm glad for you. I am. Just say, "training is going well."
  • Don't suggest a list of alternate activities. Appreciated, but not the same as running. And the list is mentally stashed for desperate times I promise. 
  • Avoid complaining about running. An injured runner wouldn't care if it was a blizzard or hurricane as long as they could run.
  • Don't suggest embracing the downtime. The brain doesn't understand why it's not getting it's important zen time, not to be confused with downtime. Yes runners tend to be type A and need to learn to slow down, slow not stop.
  • Saying something like, "Yep, that running will kill ya" may very well get you injured as well. Seriously, that boot could be used as a weapon.

What would you add to this list? Or what would you say people SHOULD say?

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