8 Etiquette Rules for Runners

Who Knew There were Running Etiquette Rules!

Running etiquette you need to know

Running Etiquette Rule #1 > Don’t do all the talking!

You’re running along happily with your two best buddies on your regular Saturday morning long run and at 4 miles in you are still dissecting last weeks date and analyzing why he hasn’t called you back.  Does this sound like you?  Or maybe you’ve had a rough week at work and you’ve just spent the last 3 miles complaining about your boss.

It’s fine to do a lot of talking during a run, it makes the run go by faster for the talker and the listeners, and some training partners may appreciate that they don’t have to talk as much especially if they are working harder than you at the same pace.  On the other hand, be aware that your running buddies may have some news to share, or problems to dissect  as well, so try to keep you stories short and give them a chance to jump in as well.  They key is to be aware and give opportunity.

Running Etiquette Rule #2 > Don’t turn it into a race

Are you the type that likes to keep one step ahead of your running partner?  Maybe you’re in a bit better shape than they and you keep speeding up on what is supposed to be an easy day?  Keep in mind that easy days are to be run easy, and running an ‘easy’ day that turns into a race with your buddy is going to take away from your next planned track or tempo workout.  If you are the one constantly pushing the pace, you may find that your running buddies aren’t going to always be so keen to get out and run with you, so save the challenges for race day, keep the easy runs easy and your running buddies happy.

Running Etiquette Rule #3 > Don’t hog the post race goodies

You just finished a race and lucky for you that the other 80% of the field has not!  So you head over to the post race food area and load up with 3 Power Bar’s, 4 bananas, a few FRS cans, several handfuls of Luna bars and a bunch of free GU packets, woot!  What a score!  …well for you anyway, don’t forget about the rest of the field that may not be so speedy, they would like some recovery drinks and product samples too, so please, take your share which is typically one of each item and save some for the rest of us. Now that is good running etiquette!

Running Etiquette Rule #4 >  Share the road

We all know what its like, you go out with your after-work running group, you start gabbing about the days events and become oblivious to the fact that you are running 3 abreast causing other pedestrians to step off the side walk to get around you and those behind you from passing.  Please be aware, share the road and share the sidewalk.

This rule is also important in races.  Those of us that walk rather than run races should stay to the right and walk no more than two abreast so that runners can get by and pass on the left.

Running Etiquette Rule #5 > Watch where you spit

Nobody likes to be hit by flying spit courtesy of the well intentioned runner in front of them.  If this type of ‘clearing’ is necessary, step to the far right or left, and take a look behind you before any projectiles leave your body…please and thank you.

Running Etiquette Rule #6 > Everyone enjoys the smell of nature…and not your dirty shirt!

After days and weeks and months of sweating in your favorite tech shirt, you may not notice as much as your running partners, but your technical clothes may not be as odor free as they once were.    Depending on how close you are with these running partners, they may be too kind to let you in on the news.  So, don’t be that runner, head over to your local running shop and pick up some laundry detergent for running clothes such as this one from Penguin and get the funk out of those stinky clothes.  If that doesn’t work, it may be time to retire some of  your older, smellier pieces.

Running Etiquette Rule #7 > Don’t be shy, say hello

A few years ago I moved from a small mid-west city to a large west-coast city and the first thing I noticed and missed was that other runners didn’t wave, smile or say hello!  For the first few runs, I couldn’t help but think there was something wrong with me.  Did I have a milk mustache?  Did I still have bed-head?  Maybe my shorts and running shirt clashed and other runners couldn’t bear to look at me???  What was it??  It turns out it wasn’t me, this keep to yourself behavior is part of living in a big city, but it doesn’t have to be!  It feels good to say hi to other runners, it makes everyone feel more like they are part of a community, so don’t be shy, look up, smile and say hi to that passing runner, you may just make their day!

Running Etiquette Rule #8 > Do offer to car pool

One less car on the road is a good thing for the environment and your pocket book, so take turn driving to races training runs.

For some fun running etiquette rules take a look at The Runner’s Rule Book: Everything a Runner Needs to Know–And Then Some

Are you practicing good running etiquette?