Category Archives: running

Jogger or Runner?

I recently read an article in Runner’s World magazine about the different connotations that the words “jogger” and “runner” have.  The writer, Mark Remy, explains how the term “jogger” is almost always the preferred term used by media outlets when a crime happens to a person who had been running.  It’s always the joggers who are raped, mugged, hit by cars, and who find the dead bodies along the trails.  The word “runner” is rarely used when concerning crimes.

I found this article so interesting because it’s so true that the word “jogger” is almost always the preferred choice when it comes to the news.  And the word “jogger” typically comes with a much more negative connotation than the word “runner.”

So what is it that determines which category we fall under?  I consider myself a runner, not a jogger.  But why?  What makes a runner?

Do I need to run a certain pace to be a runner?

Must I wear a certain type of sneaker?

Must I run a certain number of days or hours per week?

Must I participate in a certain number of races?

Must I run through the wind and rain and winter weather?

Must I have completed at least a 10K? Half marathon? Full marathon?

What makes a runner?

And how is a jogger different?  When I think of jogger, I think of someone who is running in order to lose weight, probably wearing gray sweat pants, and who is hobbling along rather than running smoothly, most likely out of breath.  Or I think of someone who is just taking a very short, leisurely job along the beach, running with the intent of embracing the beauty around them more than focusing on the running itself.

The definition of the word “jogger” is to move or shake with a jerk or a push.  So even the denotation of the word does not equate to smooth running.

Like many runners, I don’t like to be told that I’m a jogger.  Jogger?, I think. No, I’m not a jogger.  I RUN.

If someone calls me a jogger, it makes it seem less important, less significant.  It makes my running seem like more of a little hobby than something that I take pretty seriously.

Running is a relatively significant part of my life.  It’s what helps me to stay healthy and keep my Lyme under control.  It helps me to relax after stressful days.  It helps me to push myself to get faster and stronger so that I can get better at my race times.  It allows me to take time out of my day to simply be alone and think about what ever is on my mind.

In light of the problems of the world, this bit of semantics really isn’t the most significant thing to write about, but it’s something that I found so intriguing upon reading that Runner’s World article.

Do other sports have similar situations where one word for the sport is much more negative?  I’m not really sure.

And why is is that we runners aren’t the ones who are mugged and raped?  Is it because we run at a fast enough pace that we’re not the ones attacked?

It’s only the slow joggers who get into these situations, obviously.

Of course I’m just kidding, but really, why can’t a runner be mentioned on the news when some of these events take place?  It’s not like we runners are safe from being victims in a crime.

I think we should just phase the word “jogger” out of our vocabulary altogether.  If you take the time to get outside or get on your treadmill and go for a run, then you should just consider yourself a runner.

It doesn’t matter if you are running a 12-minute pace.  You’re still out there.  You’re still running.

It doesn’t matter if the farthest you’ve ever run is 1 mile.  You’re still running.

So let’s all embrace the term “runner.”  I am a runner.  Jogger?  No.  Definitely not.

run
Hartford Marathon 

 

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Hot Yoga Is Helping my Lyme

When I lived in Connecticut, I would go to a sauna a few times a week and it always seemed to help with my Lyme joint pain.

Upon moving to New Jersey, I was unable to find a sauna that was reasonably priced.  Now with the fancy infared saunas, the cheapest option I found was a spa that charged $445 for 10 sessions.  In CT, I was paying about $20/month for a gym membership to a place with a sauna.  Sometimes I would go 5 times a week.  There was no way that I was going to pay $445 for only ten 30-minute sessions.

I found a Groupon about a month ago for a hot yoga place that is just a few blocks away from my apartment.  I’ve never done any sort of yoga, but the website said that the classes are suitable for all levels.  It was only $45 for 10 classes.  $4.50 per 75-minute class?  That works for me!

So far, I’ve gone to 6 classes with 4 different instructors.  The first time was a bit intimidating.  I also didn’t sweat much the first time, probably because A) I didn’t drink enough that day and B) I was paying more attention to everyone else, trying to understand how to do the poses, so I wasn’t really focused on my own movements.

I just got back from a class tonight and by the end, I was dripping onto my mat.  I don’t sweat easily at all, so any amount of sweat is an accomplishment.  It’s gross to most people, but I get so excited when I get sweaty since it takes a lot for that to actually happen.  I now sweat way more during hot yoga than I ever did in the sauna.

I think part of my sweat levels also depend on the instructor.  The Friday evening instructor really keeps us moving, and she really pushes us into tough poses, so the sweat really increases.

With Lyme, it’s necessary to sweat to flush out the toxins.  It’s only been a month, but I’m feeling SO MUCH better right now than I was in January and early February.

I’m FINALLY working out regularly.

Last week:

Monday: 4.1 mile run, followed by  lifting.

Tuesday: 75 minu of hot yoga

Wednesday: Rest day

Thursday: 2-mile run, followed by lifting

Friday: 75 min hot yoga

Sat/Sun: Rest days since I was in CT visiting my mom

This week:

Monday: 2.4 mile run, followed by lifting.

Tuesday: 5 mile run (my longest run in a long time), followed by lots of stretches / abs.

Wednesday: 2 miles total of quarter-mile sprints, followed by lifting and plyometrics.

Thursday: It was my rest day, so I just took an hour walk on the beach.

Friday: 75 min of hot yoga.

I have not been able to work out this much in a full year.  Back in 2014, I ran a half marathon, a 5k, a Tough Mudder, and 4 Spartan races (Sprint, Super and Beast).  I had almost no Lyme symptoms.

I can’t pinpoint exactly when that all changed, but I didn’t compete in one race in 2015.  I had been registered for a half marathon, but had to cancel since I was always in too much pain to run.

Now that I’m getting back into a routine, I’m really hoping that I continue improving and that  can sign up for some races for this year.

I definitely feel like the hot yoga is helping, although I have changed a few things recently.  I started going to a chiropractor twice a week for the past 2 months or so.  I also started drinking more water since I realized after my first 2 non-sweaty hot yoga sessions that I probably wasn’t drinking quite enough.  I’m still taking a bunch of herbal supplements like I usually do.  If you’re curious, these include:

-Cat’s Claw

-Andrographis

-Resveratrol

-Krill or fish oil

-Glucosamine Chondroiton

-Astragalus

So right now I’m really happy with my progress, and optimistic that it will continue.