A marathon is truly a celebration of the human spirit. When you go a marathon, you come across so many types of people from different backgrounds and walks of life. All these people behave very differently and it is interesting to note the different types of runners you’re sure to come across when running a marathon.
12 Types of Runners to Look Out for:
1. The Optimist
Some runners come to the start line of the marathon either underestimating the effort that will go into its completion or overestimating their capabilities. At the start line, they keep talking about how easy it is going to be, and these runners seem extremely confident at the start line and not so confident at the half way mark of the race. They slow down and begin to walk as the entire crowd runs past them. Their optimism becomes their enemy.
2. The Pessimist
These marathoners are ready, they’ve done everything right with their training and diet. However, they keep telling themselves and others around them how unprepared they are and how tough it’s going to be. They talk about the steep hills on the course and the rough terrain, neglecting all the fun and energy that is all around them. These are the kind of runners that are surprised by their performance at the end of the race.
3. The One that Runs out Fast
These runners start out the 21 km race as if it is a 100m sprint. They run out so fast that their entire energy is drained by the time they reach the 1-2km mark. A marathon is an event where you need to manage your energy and spread it all over the distance of the race. You will find these runners walking on the sidewalk or sitting down to catch their breath within the first few kilometres of the race.
4. The Pretender – The Shoelace Trick!
These runners are one of those runners who run out too fast or are over optimistic in the beginning. Since they are too embarrassed to stop in the middle of race, they just pretend to tie their shoe lace by untying and tying it repeatedly till they can regain their breath and start running again. It helps them keep their confidence!
5. The Overstuffed
There are so many runners in every marathon that come to the start line with their stomachs full. They eat close to the start time thinking that the food will give them energy but don’t consider its negative effect. They usually don’t like to talk much and find it hard to match the energy of the surrounding crowd because of their uncomfortable situation.
6. The Hungry
Some runners know the problem of being overstuffed, and so they go to the other extreme, i.e. of coming to the race empty stomach. As they begin the race, they stop at every hydration station eating lots of fruits, chocolates and drink lots of water. They treat the marathon as a 4-5 hour long buffet where they can eat all they want and drink juices as much as they like!
7. The First Timers
These runners are the ones that have the right blend of excitement and worry on their face at the start line. They don’t yet know what lies ahead of them, and that worries them, but the energy around them forces them to smile and enjoy the environment. Little do they know that they will make it to the finish line and the marathon is going to change their lives for the better, forever.
8. The Senior Citizen
These are the types of runners that are truly an inspiration to all the other marathoners that are running the race. They come with a sense of calmness and energy at the same time. They run through the entire distance despite their age, knowing that running is going to improve their lives for the better.
They are the true symbol of endurance, and younger marathoners should look up to them and believe that anything is possible.
9. The Elite
Elite marathoners are the marathoners that the regular runner only sees at the start line and the finish line. They start off the race at very high speeds and seem just to fly to the finish line effortlessly.
Behind what comes off as effortless running, these runners train day in and day out enduring pain throughout their training. At the start line, they know it’s going to be hard, they know they have to endure, but they are willing to pay that price.
10. The Musical Runner
These types of runners are the most amusing kind of runners. If you run side by side them, you will find it hard to maintain a constant pace. They tend to speed up and slow down based on the music that they’re hearing.
If you have a target pace and want to stick to it, it is highly advisable not to run next to these runners as it is impossible for them to run at a constant pace. They are surrounded by their own musical world and from their running you can easily understand what kind of music they must be listening to.
11. The Poser
The cameramen on the race route cause a complete transformation on the faces of these types of runners. They might be dying from inside and outside the entire route but when they come in front of a cameraman, their faces, and their running strides transform.
A glow appears on their faces, a smile that seems to come from true happiness appears on their faces, and their running forms appears to turn into that of an elite. Once they pass the cameraman, they’re back to their original self, somehow pushing themselves to the finish line.
12. The Pacers
When you have a target pace and want to make sure you finish the race in a fixed time, Pacers come to your rescue. These Pacers either carry flags or wear t-shirts with their finishing times. You can count on them to make sure that you finish the race within your targeted time.
Pacers even motivate all the runners who are running with them along the way and keep the runners positive mentally. These types of runners have finished these races much faster than their target time and hence can comfortably run the entire distance strong at the target pace.
Bonus: The Usain Bolt Finisher!
And, as a bonus we have the ones who finish the marathon in style; let’s say something very similar to Usian Bolt! You just cannot miss their finishing photos in their FB feed!
The marathon is fun to watch and even more fun if you’re taking part in it. If you want to experience all these interesting types of runners aka people, it’s highly recommended that you run the marathon and experience the true joy of running. To help you out we’ve also got 5 Things To Keep In Mind Before Your First Marathon Run . Most of you will fit in one or more of the above categories and we’d love to know which types you can relate most to. All marathoners have their own experiences and their own stories to tell. We’d love to hear yours!