I don’t recall the exact date but I know that I started running in 2010.  Or at least attempting to then.  My first race was that fall.   Since then I have run 13 half marathons and more than a few 5k’s and 10k’s.   All that aside, more often than not, I still feel like a poser.   Like I am only playing pretend with running.   Instead of dressing up in my mother’s clothes like a little kid, I am putting on short shorts, sports bras and compression socks and just hoping I fit in.   Oh and my ever present Garmin.

I was one of those people who said I would never run, hated it.  Drove past people running and wondered what the hell they were thinking.   Then a friend signed up for Team In Training.  Seeing her go through training for a marathon and let’s be truthful, I didn’t like the way my clothes fit, I thought maybe I would try running.    However I still didn’t start running until I purchased my first iPhone.  I didn’t want to carry a phone and my ipod, I didn’t even think about water,  #priorities.    🙂   Even that little beginning was walking.  For a while I used those crazy rocker Sketchers shoes that were popular for a very short time.  Yeah, that hurt my shins.    Then that same friend pretty much bought my first pair of running shoes.  I actually started running.  But I felt awkward and out of place.  I was torn between wanting to walk when cars drove past so they didn’t see me huffing and puffing and running faster so I looked less like a turtle when they passed.     Then a few customers asked if that was me they had seen running past their house.   Ummm, maybe?   I would ask where they lived so I could make sure to run past their houses every time after that and walk when I was around the corner.   🙂  #poser

Then came races.  Cue the doubts.  Man, these people look fast.  What was I thinking?   Oh, look at all their pretty gear.   I wonder what that does?  Hmmm, those shoes look interesting.    Hell, I ran in cotton shirts and tennis shorts for over a year.  Plus side was big pockets.   Oh and I put on weight.  Grrrrr.    That wasn’t the plan.  Running was hit and miss, I’d run 6 days in a row and then take a month off, then throw in a random race.   Training plan wasn’t even part of my vocabulary.

Then something changed.  Running became less a way to burn some calories and more something I needed to do.    Along the way,  I picked up some speed and set a few PR’s.   Hey, that’s kind of cool.   My clothes changed, my accessories multiplied both by quantity and cost and can now fill a box in the trunk of my car.    But there were times I still felt out of place, like I was waiting to be told I couldn’t hang with the cool kids.    I would stalk online race times for every race I signed up for just to make sure I wasn’t going to be last.

There are still moments, hell entire runs, where I feel like a wannabe.    Days when walking seems to be all I can do, or at least seems more efficient than the slow crawl, hobble thing I was doing other wise.   When I think everyone passing is wondering if they are gonna have to help me to my car.   Then there are the runs that start off hellishly but end on a note that leaves me feeling awesome and ready for more.  There are still race mornings when I show up feeling outclassed and outnumbered but what happens between that starting gun and finish line can be pretty unifying.

My superpower? I change from "pretty girl" to "hot, panting, smelly wad of hair and sweat" in under 30 minutes. Wanna see?

In the last few weeks I have had more #poser moments than #runner.  But those runner moments make it all worth it.  And leave me feeling the deep thoughts.   🙂   Oh and coming in last at a race?  #beentheredonethat and it’s no big deal.  And I love my compression socks.    Time to get my run on.   Well, not right now, it’s dark out.   🙂

Ever feel like a #poser?

When was your last awesome running moment?

27 Comments on “Poser

  1. Hey, that’s a great post. I know the feeling well, there always seems to be someone who is more experienced, better equipped and faster.

    But here’s my take:
    1.You’re a runner if you run.
    2. Having run yesterday doesn’t make you a runner today.

    No matter how ridiculous-looking or slow I am (and I am both very much), if I am out there, I am a runner.


    • Thank you. Those are 2 very good points, #2 made me think. Like you said there will always be someone faster and as long as I am out there, I need to work on the believing in myself part. Who cares what I look like? 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Our stories are very similar – I felt like a poser forever. I HATED running! Turned to it as an outlet to lose weight, became something I now have to do. Also gained weight from running. HA! The irony. Freaking running.


  3. Such a great post. I have TOTALLY felt more #poser than #runner lately even with a dozens of halfs, bunches of marathons and even an Ultra. It’s seems silly even writing it. But it’s true. Why? Because now I’m doing an entirely different training plan which is stressing me out and is WAY outside my comfort zone. It’s forcing me to be a #runner and I feel like a tired fraud. #runnerprobs I guess. 😉


  4. This morning was a tough run. I hadn’t run all week because I’ve been at a work conference and I felt off. But I just kept at it. Run. Walk. Run. Walk. Run. Walk. Run, sprint, run, walk. Whew!
    Imagine my surprise to hit 2.2 miles at a 14:09 mile pace. 🙂 I felt great about my run when I heard my stats! So, I’m totally a #poser, but I’m okay with that!


  5. Haha, I used to be a total running poser….on purpose! When I started running I didn’t consider myself a “runner” and I didn’t want to. My goal was to complete a half marathon and I only wanted to do it to show people I can. I thought the whole running community was obnoxious and I wanted to thumb my nose at them by showing them that even someone who isn’t a diehard runner can do what they do. Well…obviously things have changed since then, and I’m glad!! Don’t worry so much about the labels and what other people think, Fallon. Just run!


    • A poser on purpose? Haha, that’s kind of hilarious. Did you tell people about this idea? What did they say? But I am glad you crossed over to the “dark side” haha. 🙂


  6. I totally feel like a #poser sometimes. Especially when I’m not doing all these crazy speed workouts, and following a training plan, working with a coach… sometimes I feel a little bit behind everyone else because I just started out on my own, doing my own thing. The last awesome running moment was in Boston… I felt like such a bad ass finishing with a decent time in horrendous weather conditions. I knew that was the toughest run I’d ever had, and I loved every single second of it. And PS you’re always a #runner : )


    • Coaches sound kind of like a dream right? An unattainable one- at least for me. But you doing you got you to Boston and that is awesome!! Not to mention finishing in this year’s conditions- definite #badass status. 🙂


  7. I was thinking almost exactly the same thing this morning. Lots of parallels in your post to me!


  8. Love this post. Absolutely – every time I run I have flashes of that “I’m not a real runner” feeling. Lately I just keep telling myself that this is MY run. I’m not going to win or place at any races, probably ever. So I should just own my pace and remember that I actually love running. Even if it means I walk half the run.


    • Thank you! “MY run”- hmm, maybe I should try that when I get frustrated with my pace or effort. Or walking- I feel like I walk so much these days, stupid heat. Like you said, I need to not be discouraged by the numbers I see on my watch. At least I’m moving right?


  9. I run at a park where a local elite running team trains. I’ve done 18 halfs, 3 fulls, and a handful of triathlons but I still feel like a #poser every tuesday and Thursday as I get lapped on the trails


    • Great racing! There’s a 10k I run every fall and a big elite group comes down from the Bay area to run it. They lap so many people on the course, including myself, it’s kind of sad. I really feel like a #poser that day. I can’t imagine it twice a week- that’s mental toughness!


  10. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes! This is how I feel constantly. I’ve run a full marathon successfully and I still feel like I’m just playing pretend! Every time I show up at a race, I’m absolutely intimidated by everyone around me. Wonder if that will ever go away?


    • Every race- no matter big or small- I always feel so out of place! I try to guess who is going to pass me. 🙂 Sometimes it makes me wonder if I should even register for a race. Luckily I usually talk myself into it. It’s comforting knowing I’m not the only one. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  11. haha oh I love this post.!!! although I don’t really get the “poser” feeling. I always think grrr, when will I be as fast as “them” (someone faster / cooler looking than me) I know there will always be faster people than me, but dwelling on it makes me feel worse. ha.
    You can’t be a poser in running.!!! you either run and your a runner, or you don’t run and you’re not a runner. ha


    • Oh, I get so envious of speedy people! Especially the ones who make it look effortless. So not fair. I need to work on feeling more like a runner- I know it’s all in my head. Well, maybe that’s the problem. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  12. All those #poser things you mentioned sound like you stole them straight from my brain! 🙂 I’ve felt like a poser almost constantly since I started running. Even as welcoming as my running club is, I still feel like I don’t belong sometimes because I’m so slow compared to the rest of them. I try to tune out that part of my brain though, and try to focus on how far I’ve come since I started running… going from barely being able to make it a quarter-mile to thinking “Oh, just 3 miles today, that’s easy.” And when I’m surrounded by speedy people, I just keep thinking “My pace!” It doesn’t always work, but it’s something 🙂


    • At least you run with a running club! I am too chicken to join one. Plus I can’t find one that has times I can actually meet. Right? 3 miles used to be so hard and seem so far but now they seem to be the baseline run these days. I need to stop worrying how I look but it’s so hard!


      • It definitely makes it hard if you can’t find a club with convenient times/locations… I’m really lucky that I have one so close by that has a few weekly things I can actually get to! And oh man, I always worry about how I look when I run, so I’m with you! It’s very hard to not feel self-conscious.


Running on Unicorns

Let me tell you a story

Running, Books, and Beer

For the Reading and Drinking Runner

All Things Racing: 5K, 10K, Half-Marathons, Fun Runs, & Obstacle Races!

5K, 10K, Half-Marathons, Fun Runs, & Obstacle Races!

You Can Run

A Blog of Running Exploits


living, loving, and running are what keeps me alive

wanderwolf Running

How I wander and where it brings me

The Brine

A place to soak in tips and stories from life, running, and anything in between.

Alastair Vance

I like running and singing, but not at the same time...

Run. Travel. Dream. | Dr. Ty Runs

My journey from being injured and out-of-shape to a half marathon... and seeing all 7 continents along the way.

BibRave Blog

Sharing all things running and racing


running, drinking & our life online.

L 2 42k

Slow runners make fast runners look good - you're welcome.

cat h. bradley

writer | traveler | food❤️er | yogi | runnin' fool

%d bloggers like this: