Does anyone else find passing people… awkward?
I don’t mean in races – passing is perfectly normal in races. So is being passed. Generally speaking in a race it’s happening so constantly that you become numb to it in either case. But I find it weird when on an outdoor training run.
Actually, being passed doesn’t bother me that much. I long ago accepted that by comparison to many people I am just not that fast. So what? I have serious endurance. I’m plugging away at ten miles here and it’s not even 8AM yet. You wanna pass me? That’s cool. I will mentally wish you Godspeed, watch you disappear into the distance, and revel in the fact that solitude has returned once again.
Passing, though? Passing feels WEIRD. For starters, I don’t do it that often, so there’s that. Moreover, though, I feel PRESSURED.
I bring this up because, naturally, I have a recent example. I was in my last few miles of a morning run when I saw a girl running up ahead. Every time I glanced up I was slightly closer to her, which was a bit concerning but strange things happen on occasion. A quarter mile later, however, events took a startling turn: I was RIGHT BEHIND HER. Right ahead of her was a HILL.
Traditionally I walk this hill. But I was about to pass someone. If I passed her and then started to walk right after, that would be stupid and I don’t know, potentially rude? But if I didn’t pass her I’d spend the next two minutes mincing along at a slower pace than necessary – and if there’s any time I DON’T want to be going slower than necessary, it’s when home is within reach.
My brain bandied about the possibilities for a bit before my subconscious decided to take the wheel and I surged ahead and passed her. RIGHT ON TOP OF THE HILL. I glanced backwards in the vain hope that she had turned onto a different road and was no longer following me, but nope, she was still there. Also, probably she saw me glancing. AWKWARD.
Of course by that point I had no choice but to subsequently run the entire hill. So, uh, thanks for that, random girl!
Anyway, my point is that the entire passing thing, while no doubt not a big deal at all for a normal person with a healthy psyche, stresses me out.
Corollary issue: when I come across a runner headed in the opposite direction and I’m coming up on a walk break, I CANNOT STOP until they’ve passed me. I have been known to extend this policy to oncoming cars as well.
How do you feel when you pass and are passed on the road?
Jenn is running the 2015 Marine Corps Marathon for the Diabetes Action Team. Will you help her earn her bib while fighting diabetes? Click here to make your tax-deductible donation.
Don’t forget, you can follow us on Twitter @fairestrunofall. To see how our training is going, check out Jenn’s dailymile here and Moon’s dailymile here. If you have any questions for us, leave a comment or email us at email@example.com. See ya real soon!