On Behalf of All The 10+ Minute Mile Runners

I know that to many of you who read this blog, running a 10 minute mile is no big deal. In fact, you may be like my husband who says it is physically painful for him to run as slow as I run.

So on behalf of all the 10+ minute mile runners out there, I have a few things I’d like to ask of the rest of the world.

1. Yes, we ARE running.

It’s true. You may be able to walk as fast as we are running. It may look like a slow jog to you, but we are giving it all we’ve got. Please do not insult us by telling us we are not really running. We are giving it everything we’ve got.

2. It is OUR race too.

Last weekend at my 10k race, we ran on roads that had to have some level of vehicle access. The volunteers did an awesome job of directing traffic. The drivers, however, weren’t so kind. I actually had a UPS driver honking at us, tell us to stop so he could get through. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? You know there is a race going on! I turned and yelled at him, “I am having the best 10k of my life! PLEASE do not do this!” Less than half a mile from the finish line, a volunteer directed a car to cross across the road in a gap in front of me. It would have been just fine – except that the car behind him went too, blocking my access to the road. I got SO mad. I ran around the car, smacking it with my hand as I went past. Childish? Probably. I couldn’t believe that I had run over 5.5 miles without walking but that car tried to get in my way. It was as though I wasn’t even racing. As if I didn’t matter.

True, I may not have been racing against others in the race itself. The first place runner had long since finished. But I was in a race – against myself. Against the voices in my head telling me it would be easier to walk. Against those feelings of self-doubt. Of not feeling good enough. And you know what? I won that race!

3. We can use some encouragement too.

Sometimes it’s easy to cheer for the people running a ridiculous 5:20 mile on the race course. And yes, I’m sure they appreciate the cheers too. But please save some for those runners gutting out a 12 minute mile. You don’t know their battle – what they have overcome. You may be tired of cheering by the time we pass by a half hour later, but please muster up a cheer. You never know how much your encouragement might mean to someone!

Any other 10+ Minute Mile Runners have something you’d like people to know? Please share! 


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211 Responses to On Behalf of All The 10+ Minute Mile Runners

  1. Eleanor Burns

    Yay for us 10+ minute milers! For some of us (me) 11 & 12 minute miles are progress and for others it is still a far off goal. We should be proud of ourselves for not giving in to discouragement. It is sometimes hard to see people posting 7 & 8 minute miles but then I remind myself that I am running because I love it!

    • Shona

      Thanks for this post. I had this on my mind this morning.

      Yes, I’m a runner! I don’t care if Granny passes me on her walker. I’m a runner.

    • Tammy

      Hi All,
      It is SO Encouragining to see people on this blog, that are running THEIR race with courage and determination. I am ONLY running a 14 minute mile right now. To ALL of us who are continuing to battle & NOT given up.

  2. A mile is a mile no matter how fast or slow you go! 🙂

  3. Ahh Callie thanks for posting! I’ve actually been working on a post about my slow running. Thanks for sharing!

    PS my husband says the same thing. He’s a speedy mcspeed demon

  4. I am a 10+ minute mile runner at this point- maybe more! My best time ever was in college and it was 7 and a half minutes for a fitness test. That was the first and last time I EVER ran a mile that fast. I am training for my first 5K this Spring and I know I will be slow. I also know my kids and hubby will be cheering me on to the very end. Even if I finish last, I will be thrilled just to cross the finish line. I think we should cheer even louder for the people coming in last- odds are they have had to work harder to get where they are.

  5. You tell ’em Callie! You had an awesome race…and so did I. We are lapping everybody on the couch 🙂

  6. Ali

    Thanks Callie for writing this. It always makes me feel good when others motivate, encourage and cheer . . . I know I will never be the fastest, but I will finish and like you said it is a race against my own mind.
    WOOHOO to all of us!!!

  7. Love this! I actually had a MAN come on my blog last year and tell me I didn’t actually “run” my marathon because my time was too slow. I wish I was joking. Some people are pure evil. I run a 10:15 half marathon pace and am proud of it! great post!

  8. What a great post and awesome job on the 10K! I love a good encouragement!

  9. Great post, Callie! I also get a little discouraged when it seems like everyone who talks about running is breezing through BQ times in a marathon, and have to keep reminding myself that I’m really only running for myself, and I can (try to) enjoy the races no matter what my speed.

  10. Bravo!! Very well put. Most of the time I’m okay with the fact that I’m still a 10+ miler, but then every now and again in open company when people are talking about their 7 and 8s, I start to feel bad. No more! I’ve had a lot of speed gains in the past two weeks and I’ll get there–in my own time. 🙂

  11. michelle brandon

    I love your blog!! Until I began following it, I was afraid to try running a 5k. After reading about your trials and tribulations, I decided to give it a shot! Now I run (10+ m/m) a few times a week in my neighborhood ….’just ‘cuz I can’ 🙂

  12. LOVE THIS! I’m right there with you and the part about your husband cracks me up! I used to run with my boyfriend, but the 10min mile pace is also painful for him and he doesn’t feel like he’s getting a workout! lol! 🙂 It works for us though, and I’m glad i’m able to run at all. Great post 🙂

  13. I so needed to hear that this morning. Since I run a 13min mile, I frequently feel like I just don’t count. I can’t find runners to “train” with because no one runs as slow as I do. But I keep going. I’m determined to prove to myself that I can do this, and even if I never run any faster, I just want to keep running. This post totally made me weepy, in a good way.

  14. I always stay and cheer for the slower runners at races. I think it’s harder to run slower (more time on your feet) especially at the longer races. I think stuff like walking a marathon is hard core! They are still walking while I’m showered and stuffing my face!

  15. Lauren

    I totally agree! I am a 11-12 min mile runner…and yes I consider myself a runner!! People definitely don’t know what we have overcome to get to this point! Thanks for this post!

  16. Debbie

    What a great post. Yes I wish I could run 9 minute miles. But mostly I am grateful God gave me strong legs that allow me to run. I pray I will always be able to feel the pleasure of running. May I always have the health and ability to enjoy one of my favorite hobbies.

  17. I love this post! I am a slow runner and I often feel like I am doubting myself. The more I train, the faster I get, but when I started running I was at a 13+ minute mile pace for short runs.

    I shaved about 18 minutes off my half-marathon time during my last race and I was cheering for those who were came in behind me. It was not that long ago, that was me.

    Good job on all your races!

  18. I have run races at a slower pace, and I am always happy when they keep the race open for me 😉

  19. LOVE this. I “walk” with my co-worker at lunch. But her walking pace is 14 minutes on average. I have to jog to keep up with her. I really don’t know how she does it. She’s maybe an inch taller than me, but gee whiz! I feel so slow. But I am proud of myself because it’s more than I was able to do before I started training with her. My husband and I are going to “jog” a 10K in our town in March. We’re pumped! Who cares if we’re slow. We don’t. At least we’re out there doing something instead of sitting on the couch as we have been until now. Amen.

  20. Jen

    Great post! When I did my first half, when I came in…there was hardly anyone there cheering but my family. Most of the booths had packed up and left – it was a little sad.

  21. Great post! Another reason why “labels” can be so detrimental to our self worth! Who gets to define what “real” running is? Running is what I make it, not what someone else defines it to be. If I am out, feet to pavement, then I am making progress and strides. I am just getting back to running after a long hiatus and I am S L O W. But, I’m out there!

  22. Haley

    Love the post!!! It’s a good reminder for those who forget that not everyone runs 7:00 min miles…

    I especially love your part about cheering. I spectate the Boston Marathon every year and those later in the race are actually way more fun to cheer for because they’re grateful for the cheering, responsive and you can tell it motivates them!

  23. Love this post! I gave up on running after a year long attempt b/c I couldn’t ever manage to get any faster than an 11-12 minute mile. It was so discouraging in a world full of speed demons. Thanks for writing this today!

  24. Thank you for standing up for me and all of the other 10 minute milers out there! We appreciate your support and words of encouragement!

  25. Pingback: 13 Minute Mile | Yummy Sushi Pajamas

  26. This was amazing! I am a 10+ minute miler, and let me tell you, I am working hard during those minutes!
    I was a slow runner as a child, and people used to tease me about my (lack of) speed. As a result, I stopped running all together, and denied myself the joy of just MOVING for years. It doesn’t matter how fast you run, it matters how much fun you’re having.

    • Right there with you. I was always the biggest kid in my class, and thus the slowest and most awkward. In an attempt to get kids to not make fun of me, I stopped participating. I’m getting back in to the groove now though, and I love it.

  27. Thank you for writing this! So true! It’s really hard when you see a lot of bloggers whipping out sub 9 minute miles, and I’m trying my hardest for an 11 minute mile. I think sometimes too much emphasis is put on pace. I know I even feel silly to call myself a “runner” when my running pace is someone else’s slow jog pace. It’s a hard balance!

  28. Great post! I always feel like people are judging me when I tell them my pace. I’m a runner no matter what they say!

  29. Thanks for this post! I started running in August of 2011 – and I may be slow (11-12 minute miles) but I am consistent and I get out there as often as I can! I also realized the importance of staying in your target heart rate zone, and when I try and run a 10 minute mile, I am just not there. Now that I have taken off the pressure of running ‘fast,’ dare I say.. I enjoy it?! I am training for a half-marathon and with no time pressures… it is fairly relaxing!

  30. Amen! Love this post… you are so right! 🙂

  31. Thank you for this post. My comfortable pace is usually 12:00, and I walk way more than I like in my races. It’s nice to know I have a lot of company in the pack! Congrats on your 10k!

  32. Oh! This is nice to read! I am a 10+ runner as well. Though I’m awfully proud of what I do I am constantly keeping the negative thoughts at bay! I live in a small-ish city and am usually among the last 10 finishers in any given race. I’ve found the best way to keep myself motivated is to be really supportive of the other runners around me! It’s amazing how critical we people can be of ourselves even, you know, at mile 12 of a half marathon!

  33. I LOVE everything about this post. I just started running last June, with the couch to 5k program, and ran my first “official” 5k for my 30th birthday in 32:28 (that’s a 10:28 pace). Since then, I’ve been working on building up my endurance and speed (I ran my first 10k in December and just ran a 5k in 30:10 this past weekend!) and though my own personal goal is to get to a place where I can run sub-10-minute miles outside comfortably, I have HUGE respect for runners of all speeds. Running should be about having fun, pushing yourself (in a healthy way!) and making your body feel good!

  34. THANK you for this Callie! During my first half marathon, a Rock N Roll event, I didn’t get to hear ANY of the music, because most of the bands were either wrapping up or on a break by the time my wave got there. SO BUMMED. Poor planning to accompdate the back of the pack. We are runners too! <3

  35. I ran my first marathon in over 5 and a half hours. (That’s a 12+ pace.) I always get embarassed when people ask me how long it took me. I shouldn’t be, though! A marathon is 26 miles no matter how long it takes. There weren’t huge crowds cheering at the end, but I was so thankful for the handfull of people that were there.*

  36. Alisa

    I’m not a runner but I am a walker! I finished my first race in November (a 5-miler on Thanksgiving – my best time EVER – 65 mins!) and I was ecstatic! I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in the fall and this was my way of saying that fibro can kiss my butt! I trained all fall and was the first walker to cross the finish line. I got no cheers, no “way to go’s”, and the volunteers along the way looked annoyed that I was taking so long to finish. I felt so let down until I crossed the finish line and a guy standing next to it asked if I had walked the whole way. When I answered that I had, he gave me a hug and told me I had done so well. I really needed that and was so proud of myself. I am now training to walk a half marathon. Whether you are a “slower” runner (all runners seem fast to me!) or a walker, I really do feel like everyone should be proud of what they accomplish. Everyone who gets mad is just impatient jerks or jealous that they aren’t out doing what you are doing! 🙂

  37. jamie

    YAY for penguin runners!
    (from John “the penguin” Bingham)

    You might be a penguin if…

    …you have to politely (for the third time) tell the men in the police car moving behind you that no you do not wish for a ride.

    …you wear your jog bra on top of your singlet. This is especially true if you are male.

    …during a race, you keep turning around to see if there is still anybody behind you.

    …the rest of the pack is out of sight before you have run 100 yards.

    …you meet both the hare and the tortoise running back towards you doing their cool-down after a race

    …the only reason you don’t drop out of a race is that you are embarrassed that the police in the car behind you (closing the course) will see you.

    …as you are rounding the corner onto Main Street and the finish line, you overhear the announcer on a microphone to the crowd of 500 saying “We are assured the young lady is coming in!” (Oh well, at least I was young).

    …you recognize all the regular runners on your favorite route from behind.

    …you get passed on the uphill by a runner pushing a double baby jog stroller.

    …you shoot a 24-shot roll of film during a marathon.

    …you make arrangements for a late checkout at the hotel.

    …you are more worried about the porta-potty lines than the start line.

    …your support crew talks about meeting you for supper, not lunch.

    …you have to memorize the route because you know that you will lose the back of the pack.

    …the truck picking up the cones is pressing on your behind. (Don’t laugh – this actually happened to me!)

    …as you pass a course volunteer they ask you, “How many are behind you yet?” and you say “Behind me? Behind? Gosh… I think two… Unless they turned around!”

    …the awards ceremony is over before you cross the finish line.

  38. Yay for 10 minute milers! It’s all about perspective… to some we are slow, to others we are rock stars. Not everyone can run and we are doing it!

  39. At marathon #2 I was stopped at an aid station around the 24 mile mark. One of the guys on the support crew pulled up and told the volunteers “She is number 17 from the back.” He didn’t mean anything by it and was only giving the volunteers an idea of how many people were still out there (it was a smallish race). But seriously, I would have loved it if he had said that a minute later after I had restarted my angry shuffle toward the finish line.

  40. AMEN to this. I am a newbie and I run 10 min miles all the time … it can sometimes be hard to see these bloggers post their 8 minute splits and then complain about being slow. haha

    You know what? 10 minute or 8 minute or 20 minute if you’re out there then you’re miles ahead of those who aren’t!!!! 🙂

    Thanks for this!

  41. I’m so glad that I saw this post retweeded. I’m 5 9″ and run 30 minute 5Ks. Everyone thinks I’m joking, but I’m just slow and comfortable with whatever my pace is. My biggest grievance is being compared to other people. It doesn’t matter if someone runs faster than me, at least I’m out there doing it. Great post! (And I’m glad to know I’m not the only on in the club.)

  42. I like #1 the most!!! My hubby doesn’t think I’m a real runner, and that my mile pace is slow. It makes me sad that he doesn’t think I am a real runner but I have chosen to not fight that battle anymore.

  43. I just found your blog from CaitlinHTP, she linked to this post on her FB page this morning. I LOVE THIS POST. I am always amazed at every single person I see being active regardless of what activity they are doing or how fast {or slow} they may be going because it means they have made a decision to make it a priority instead of finding an excuse. When I first started running in 2007 I could only run for about 30 seconds. Right now I’m coming back from an injury and I’m enjoying every single step I take rather if I’m running a 12 minute mile or walking a 20 minute mile. “If you run, you are runner. It doesn’t matter how fast or how far. It doesn’t matter if today is your first day or if you’ve been running for twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run.” ~John Bingham~

  44. THANK YOU!! You have said what I have felt so many times. No one who sees my slug-crawl woudlever assume I am only a few years removed from being so large that physical activity at all was almost an impossibility. I have never “podiumed”, set any speed records, and have actually on one occasion finished last of the people being timed. I dont always finish pretty, but am proud of the fact that I have never failed to finish a “race” no matter how long it takes me.

  45. Great post!

    It is also discouraging to read on some blogs about their “easy” 8:30 paced 6 milers! Gah! I barely ever have an easy run and certainly not even close to a 8:30 pace!

    At one 25k I did around a 11:00 pace, they ran out of GU for the back of the pack. I had my own (thankfully), but geeze, we’re out there a heck of a lot longer and need some fuel too!

  46. i got stopped in an 8K by a cop letting cars go at a red light. its very discouraging!

    i will say that the faster i get, the more i realize how much more work it is to be slow! those of us that can gut through a 12 m/m marathon and not give up? that’s freakin fabulous! and far more impressive than someone who can run in naturally quicker.

  47. nancy

    Can I just say thank you for this post? I followed the link from Caitlin and am so glad I did. I am a 11 minute miler and I don’t intend to try to do much about that. That is where I am. I have been contemplating a Half Marathon for my upcoming milestone birthday (50!) but cannot get a positive mindset about it. I guess I just don’t feel like a real runner. My husband so nicely gets me gifts that support my running (Garmin, Road ID, new tights, new shoes, etc) but I feel so unworthy of them. Yes I get out there and run at least 3 times per week and yes my distances are slowly increasing. But I still don’t feel worthy to be called a runner. I did a 5k with my 12 year old last month. It was windy, cold and raining. Dreadful conditions but I will remember it forever because to me, I won that race. I ran the entire thing without stopping. No big deal to most runners but I had never, ever done that before. I decided I was going to try not to take any walking breaks and I did it, but I only did it by slowing my already slow pace. As far as I am concerned that was the best race of my life. Working on my mindset now and hoping I can overcome the negative voices in my head that keep telling me that 13.1 can’t happen for me.

  48. Great post!
    Whether you finish first or last you are still a marathoner, or triathlete, or 5K runner, etc.
    Having the courage to even show up on race day makes you a winner.

  49. I LOVE this post and all of the responses! Sometimes I feel like the only one running 11s and 12s in the blog community. I touch on this slightly in my blog post for tomorrow, but I am so tired about hearing all of the criteria to be a “real runner”. If I have to meet some imaginary goals to be a “real runner” I’d rather not be one. I’m a “funner runner”!

  50. I am a slow runner too, but people don’t really say those things! I just think I’m getting a longer workout=more calories burned. jk. I’d like to be faster one day, but whatever. It’s my own workout!

  51. I love this post because it offers encouragement and I think everyone who runs deserves to be encouraged, no matter their pace.
    On the other hand, it frustrates me a little. Because 10+ min/mile runners don’t need to feel like they’re different than other runners. I am a slower runner and honestly, outside of talking to other running bloggers, no one can tell the difference as to whether I’m fast or slow. When my coworkers used to ask me about running I’d always say I was slow and then watch their eyes glaze over when I tried to explain the difference between and 8 min mile and a 12 min mile. I’m not a fast runner but I am a runner, it’s my hobby and I love it and pretty much anyone who has talked to me for more than 5 minutes knows it. 🙂
    As a slow runner, I want people to know that I don’t want them to think of me as anything but another runner at a race.


    I don’t talk much about my running much because sometimes, it’s just hard to read of people running a 2-hour half-marathon and complaining of how slow they were. Ummm… I would be ECSTATIC to finish a half-marathon in THREE hours. lol.

    I run a 13-minute mile on a good day and I’m not going to let anyone make me feel bad about it. It feels hard and good for me and my body and that’s all that really matters.

  53. I LOVE this post! It is so great to know that I am not alone in my 10+ minute miles….I swear I get anxiety from the treadmill runners next to me that get on and blast off at like 7.5mph! I’m like: are you kidding me? But you are right: we ARE running. I have never called myself a runner because I’m a turtle, but you reminded me that even a slow runner is a runner nonetheless. Thanks for inspiring!

  54. Ben

    Terrific Post. as a 12+ min/mi guy, I’ve experienced some of the same, though honestly I don’t think I’ve ever done a race where I lack support, unless there was just no one watching at all. Ive found people are usually equally or even more supportive of slow folks like myself than they are of the fast people who they may not be able to identify with.

  55. Gladys

    I SOOO glad someone finally addressed this! I read a lot of blogs where the authors are running 9 minute miles and to me that is SO FAST! I’m running my first half marathon at the end of the month and I will keep this post in the back of my head that Sunday morning! Thank you!

  56. Great post! It is so hard seeing all my running friends on Twitter and what not posting about their 7 & 8 min miles, when I’m struggling to pull out a 10 min mile these days. Everyone assumes b/c I have a lean build I will be a really fast runner, but that just isn’t the case…at least not for distance running. At my Half a couple of weekends ago, it meant more to me than anyone will ever know to have people still cheering me on all the way through the race, even though I know by the end I was pretty much just shuffling my feet, but I was giving it all I had!

  57. This is such a beautiful, true, and honest post!! I am not a 10 min runner – and am ashamed to admit that I used to be pretty obnoxious with my thoughts / opinions of the “slower” runners. I was immature and thought that I was better b/c I was faster. You are 100% right – you deserve to be out there running just as much as the rest of the runners. Thankfully, I have matured (somewhat) and have a much better appreciation for the strength and dedication that you have.
    Thank you for this post!!

  58. At best, I run an 8:30 mile. On average, I run a 9:45-10:00. And you know what? That’s just how I roll. And when I finish a run (any run–a two mile fun run or a half marathon), I feel like I’m freaking awesome, regardless of my time.

    Thanks for writing this!

  59. Amen sister!

    I would also like to add that those runners who are running 7-8 minute miles do not get to call themselves “slow.”

  60. It has taken me a really REALLY long time to become comfortable with my pace and my status as a “runner”. To this day, I do run:walk intervals, and even though I take regular walk breaks & average between 11 and 12 min/mile I most definitely consider myself a runner. I seriously think every person has their own “pace” and eventually we’ll each hit our own “max”. I mean, sure I’m getting faster as time progresses but I know I’m never EVER going to run a 7 min mile…or hell, even a 9 minute mile!

    As soon as I stopped giving myself shit about whether I was fast enough, I actually started making more progress! People are always going to have their opinions about who “counts” as a real “runner” and who doesn’t. But to me, all that matters is that I think I count!

  61. Thank you for writing this post! I feel that in the world of running blogs – it is only ‘okay’ if you run fast. I don’t run fast – I usually have 10 minute miles on my longer runs. (Am I getting faster? Yes, but slowly…and I’m okay with that!) And when I see a blogger write, “I looked at my splits and saw they were around 8 minute miles and was mad” I want to scream. Some of us aspire for that! However, we must remember – we run for ourselves! No use comparing – I run for me and I’m happy about that! 🙂

  62. I found this blog entry through @dacialee33 on Twitter – so glad she reposted it! This is awesome! Last year, I wrote a blog post in support of all people who get out there and move, regardless of their speed.


    So happy to see so many proud people here, standing up and being proud of being athletes. We’re all way ahead of those who never get off the couch except to walk from the car into the grocery store and back. We’re pushing ourselves, and it’s awesome!

  63. At the ING NYC Marathon lululemon Cheer Station (mile 22.5), the 10-minute milers were my favorites to cheer for. Why? They’re running, they’re loving it and they smile and blew kisses at us. Keep running!

  64. Elizabeth

    Amen! I love this post!

    I’ve been running for two years. When I first started, I was walk/jogging 18-20 minute miles. Two years and 35 pounds lighter, I now do between 12-13 minute miles. I’ve finished a 5k, 10k, 2 halfs and a full marathon. Yes, I’m slow, but I’m still a runner and I aim to improve with every run.

    It really bothers me that some in the running community don’t consider someone like me a real runner, but in the end I’m doing it for me and I can’t believe how far I’ve come from the girl whose only form of exercise was lifting a wine glass and television remote.

  65. Obviously you hit a nerve!! A good one 🙂 I’m a 10-min miler too. I read somewhere recently that runners need to strike “fast for me” from their vocab when talking about a run or a pace. We shouldn’t feel the need to qualify our pace. If it felt fast, it was fast! It’s hard to do, compared to those who run 8 and 9 min paces on easy runs–but I’ve been trying. I’m running my first full marathon on Sunday and I’ll be thrilled if my overall pace is under 11min! I know I can’t run all 26 miles at a 10-min pace even..but I’m running a freaking marathon and that’s what counts in my book!

  66. This is a great post. Thank you for sharing! My pace varies widely, anywhere from 8:30-9:30 m/m but there have been numerous times where I’ve slowed down considerably during a race to over 10 m/m. I’ve trained for speed and have seem a marked difference in my race times over the past 2 years. But, that’s neither here nor there.

    It doesn’t matter how fast or slow you are – you’re out there and that’s all that matters. My goal is not to win an age category, a medal, or race – it’s to overcome and win the challenge I’ve set forth for myself whether that be in 3 miles, 13 or 26. I recently ran a 25K (15.6miles) and beforehand, I checked the registration list. Hmm, not too many runners (~50). The gentleman at the registration table said to me, “Sizing up the competition, huh?” To which I responded, “No, definitely not. I’m just checking to see who I’m going to come in last to.” And his comment? “The person who isn’t out there…that’s who’s coming in last.” Going into this race I was extremely nervous but that comment really stuck with me and put the biggest smile on my face. It couldn’t be more true!

    Just because you run at a certain pace doesn’t mean that you’ve put in any less effort than other runners out there. Be proud of how far you’ve come and where you’re headed! 🙂

  67. Dianna

    Callie, thank you so very much for this post. I have just started running. I have to say that it’s one of the most difficult things I have ever done. I am a 12 – 13 mIn mile. My runner friends are all so much faster than I am. It often makes me feel badly. I really needed to read this today!!!! Thanks so much! Great job on the 10k. I will be training soon for my first half in May. I just want to finish. That’s what it is about for me, Even though my marathon friend will be first to look up my time.

  68. I would like to respond to each of your points as a sub-10 minute miler, but probably (unfortunately) not representative of all of us. Here we go…

    1. You have some bounce in your step, you are running by my standards.
    2. There are very few who are actually racing to take a number one spot (overall or age group), anyone else is just kidding themselves. We all race against ourselves in one way or another- that is why we run. Do not let those jokers tell you otherwise. And I am glad you slapped the car, good for you!
    3. I absolutely love staying at races and cheering until the last finisher crosses the line. Everyone has their own journey to get there, gotta respect it!

    Keep on running, no matter what the pace!! Great post!

  69. I love this post so much I am going to share it on my own FB page
    Eat Run Sail

    and tweet it too

    I am training for my first half marthon (I have been a 10+ miler for many many years now) and was dreading knowing that it will take me about 3 hours to finish. I think there will be others, too… now. Thanks so much for this post,

  70. Thank you so much for writing this!! I LOVE it!! It’s so true! 🙂

  71. tracey

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for writing this post. I feel like such a failure with my lame finish times compared to most running blogs I read – and actually thought about starting a blog for the “slow” runners to read! Your post covers all my thoughts and more – especially the point that us slowpokes are racing against no one but ourselves. My next half marathon is in a week and a half, and my only goal is to beat my previous PR – even if it’s just by 10 seconds. But if it’s by 6 minutes, I’ll take that too 🙂
    Thanks for a great post!

  72. Meg

    This post is full of win! As a fellow slow runner, I can completely relate. Thank you for writing this. : )

    That said, I live in a neighborhood of mostly older, retired people…I was out for my run yesterday, doing probably an 11-minute mile pace and as I passed a lady and her dog, she smiled and said, “You’re so fast!” I smiled and thanked her, and quietly chuckled to myself. It’s all relative!

  73. Amy

    So thankful that you posted this! There are so many speedy blogger/runners out there and they are a little overwhelming! You rock!

  74. I’m definitely not one of the fast ones, so I really appreciate this post. And from a BLOGGER! Whoaaaaa. A blogger not bitching and moaning about not making their sub-4 hour marathon. A blogger keeping it real. Thanks!

  75. Christie

    I’m glad to hear my husband isn’t the only one who says it’s painful to run with me! That hurts me worse than all the dummies on the course. I will say that at the triathlons I have done, the cheering and support for all the non-elites like me is pretty amazing. Triathlons are good that way.

  76. i’m definitely not a fast one either when I run, but doesn’t “slow and steady win the race”? 🙂 I have a medical condition that has made my entrance to running a very slow and long process, and I typically run about 11 minute miles. To many that would be incredibly slow, but it’s what I can do, so I do it!

  77. THANK YOU for blogging about this! I always hesitate to blog about my running because I’m not a speed demon, but this post reminded me that I’m not alone! You’re right…we matter too!

  78. WORD!! What a fantastic post. And just what I needed to hear. Sometimes you feel alone with your slow pace, it is nice to hear you aren’t alone.

  79. I love this. Thank you for posting. Additionally, I think we all need to agree as a collective that the next time someone asks us if we’re “runners” or “joggers,” we’re allowed one free punch. Thoughts?

  80. I really love this. I am not a 10-min miler, but I have so much respect for anyone getting out there and running period. It really doesn’t matter how fast you are in my mind. If you enjoy it, you’re a runner!

  81. Girlfriend, you are my new favorite running blogger! Haha. I just wrote a post yesterday about how I’ve evolved as a runner, and I, too, am a 10+ runner. You’re damn right we’re runners, because we put just as much heart and soul into our runs as anyone else out there. Keep rockin’ your runs, Callie!

  82. I think in some ways slower runners are the stronger runners. Just think about how much more time you spend on your feet to finish the same distance. One of my clients was a 13 minute miler. I trained her so she could stay ahead of the sweep at a local 10 miler. She had more heart and determination than most of the faster runners I know.

    Great post!

  83. As one who clawed my way from a 13 minute mile to a 9 minute mile in 2 years…to getting injured and being back at a 12 minute mile, I applaud this post. There is running etiquette about not starting at the front of the pack if you are a slow runner. However, there is no written or unwritten rule that says if you can’t keep up with the elites that you have no business being there. You run your own race.

  84. In my experience, it is the 10+ minute milers that seem to appreciate the cheers more 🙂 Love this post 🙂

  85. Whoop W hoop Way to GO!!

  86. I echo Mindy’s comment of A mile is a mile no matter how fast or slow you go!

  87. Yes! Great post! No matter what your running speed is, you’re still a runner & deserve respect, and encouragement!

  88. Im so glad I found this. My goal is a 10:15 – 10:20 minute mile for my 3rd 1/2 in March. I was so upset when I did not get into the NYC 1/2 and the guy who I started training with did (who I might add is a 7 min miler) But I did not get discouraged and now not only am I a NYC Road Runner but am a Member of Team for Kids. I too, blog about my running goals, among other things. Keep the miles coming and the posts!!!

  89. I love your blog it is so real, and I can so relate to your posts.

  90. Some day, when my ankle is fixed, I’m going to be a runner. And I’m going to think about this. I’m going to kick some butt.

  91. Wow.. this post is so encouraging!! Just because I’m not super fast doesn’t mean I shouldn’t try at all! So glad Meghann retweeted this link!

    Congrats on your 10k 🙂

  92. jayme

    I just discovered your blog. THANK YOU so much for this post! I did my first day of Couch to 5k today and I did 30 minutes of the walking/jogging and I only went 2 miles on the treadmill! I felt like I went for 8! I see these other blogs with people doing 6 and 7 minute miles and I want to be there so badly. But maybe one day soon I will do a 10 minute mile! Has anyone else tried the Couch to 5k? I hear great things!

  93. Thank you!! I am a 10+ minute miler. Maybe I could go faster if I only did one mile at a time. I’ve been going even slower lately with a friend and trying really hard to be proud of the times I’ve been logging on Daily Mile. When I put up 13, 14+ avg. miles, I feel like some people might judge. No one has ever said anything, but I can’t help but feel like they’re thinking it.

    Awesome post!!

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  95. Angela

    Great post! I’m right there with you. For so long I didn’t feel like a runner. Now, I just look at the postive, that I’m out there doing what so many others only aspire to do!

  96. You go girl! I am a 9-10 minute mile runner as well, and I’m damn proud!I haven’t encountered any negativity towards my pace, but I do see lots of people waaayyy faster than me on twitter & daily mile. great post!

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  100. Anna

    A friend posted your blog. I am running my first 5K on Saturday. I’m just wanting to finish and it may take me an hour to make it those 3.1 miles but I will finish. 😀

  101. Love this! I’m a slow runner but that’s ok. I have seen improvement from when I started. Do I want to get faster? Sure, but we all do what we can within our own abilities.

  102. This. Is. Awesome. I run and Coach a 13-minute mile group. I couldn’t agree with the things you said more.

    You are so amazing! Keep up your hard work and thanks for reminding us that WE are runners too. YOU rock!! 🙂

  103. For some reason your blog wouldn’t load yesterday but I have been waiting to comment on this post. LOVE IT! Speed, distance, etc don’t matter when running. What matters is getting out there, doing something for your health, pushing your limits, enjoying it, and living the experience. That’s what makes running. You do that and you’re awesome!

  104. I love this post – runners of any speed deserve support and encouragement, everyone starts somewhere. I was a member of the 10+ minute mile club for YEARS and I’ve had the same complaints. No matter what you’re pace, I find there’s always someone faster and almost always someone slower – the point is to encourage everyone to keep going and keep pushing! I’m glad you smacked that car that blocked your path – how rude of them!

  105. I am in the slower group as well…just below 10 min for shorter distances and in the 10s for half marathons.
    I have never felt like people treated me badly because of it during races or on my blog. I did get stopped once last summer during a 10k and it was because I was isolated and the COP decided the cars were more important than my time, I almost punched him! I am sure that he would have never stopped the elite runner!!! I am with you, if you get out and you run, you are a runner, does not matter the speed you go at. A lot of my friends cannot do a 10 min mile!

  106. I LOOOOOOOOOOOVE this post! Running is running and EVERYONE deserves to be cheered on! I can’t believe the UPS guy or the guy that went in front of you – I would’ve slapped the car too, that’s just rude and annoying. Keep on doing what you’re doing, because what you’re doing is awesome!

  107. As a fellow “slow runner” (*rolls eyes that we even need a category for running*) I can honestly say…I love you! My goal is to run a 10 minute mile consistently and not die. I’m very accustomed to be the snail in the running group and though I don’t like it and wish I was faster, I’m also very proud of every last thing I’ve accomplished with my running, just as you should be! I’m going to keep on running no matter how fast or slow I am because I have a genuine love of the activity and I suspect you will too 🙂

  108. Bravo! I feel like you took the words out of my head and put them onto the page! Every 10+ min/mil runner needs to read this. I don’t think there are always as many resources that celebrate the slower runner. Thanks for celebrating those of us that take a little longer to reach the finish line!

  109. I can’t stand when people ask if I’m a runner and I say, “Yes” and then they ask how fast I run. I tell them it depends how far I’m going, but usually about a 10 minute mile. Then they say, “Oh, so you really are a jogger, not a runner.” Heck, no! I’m a runner, too, dammit!

    Great post, Callie 🙂

    • Tiffany

      Those people are jerks! And not sure if it makes you feel better or worse, but some people probably call 8 min. miles “jogging” too. Running is in the eye of the beholder. If you’re out there on your feet covering the miles, you ARE A RUNNER, and anyone who tells you differently is a jerk.

      • I appreciate that Tiffany! Do you mind telling me how you found this post? It appears that someone must have linked to it on Facebook b/c my blog traffic is going through the roof today, but I can’t seem to find the source. 🙂

  110. Thanks for getting this message out there! I am currently working on starting my running life over. I want to see what I’m capable. That said, I have completed two marathons. In one of them I was the last official finisher, 5:58. It was a real dose of humble pie, but it was a marathon finish, so it was a win in my book. My other marathon is listed online as a DNF, but I know that I did, actually, finish. I learned that I run for myself, and that I need to gauge my satisfaction with where I am instead of allowing others to do it for me. I learned to seek out positive people, and that there are some people from whom I keep my running life private. Negative Nellies will never understand the satisfaction we feel from doing something that challenges us each and every day, but that doesn’t mean we quit doing it. Thanks for this post! It sounds like I have a story to tell. Off to write!

  111. Great post, and I couldn’t agree more. I’m a 10+ runner and proud to be out there. 🙂

  112. Love this post… I have seen so many people quit because they don’t get faster… Nobody should ever under estimate ANY of their accomplishment… like running… BTW first time here, just found your blog 🙂

  113. Running is so much more than speed! We run for all kinds of reasons on any given day. Some days are faster and some days are slower. Do what you love and share that love with others! More cow bells and encouragement! It is time for us to get our race on where and whenever that may be. Don’t be afraid to be supportive and likewise supported! Who is with me? I love enthusiasm. 🙂

  114. Hear, hear!!! I’m a new runner, myself, and keeping up a 10-minute pace is my goal right now. Your words speak to me, especially the part about racing against YOURSELF–fighting the fatigue, fighting the voice in your head reminding you how easy it would be to walk. We ROCK for winning our personal races. We ARE runners, too 🙂

  115. Kelly


  116. This is awesome! I saw this article posted on the facebook wall of HealthyTippingPoint and I clicked on it immediately. It was just what I needed. I started running outside recently and my miles are slower than they are on the treadmill, so I feel like I can’t call myself a “runner.” But we are working hard too! Someone’s still driving a car, even if they are going 5 mph, right?

  117. I love this. Who cares how fast you’re running, what’s important is that you’re out there giving it your all!

  118. This is great! I have actually been thinking about this a lot lately as I am also a 10+. So happy the hear that there are other 10+ people out there just like me!

  119. My goal is to one day be a 10-minute miler (now it’s 15 – I’m sloooow). We are all runners. At the very least, I’m faster than the dude on his couch;-)

  120. Sheryl

    Thank you for your blog. I am a walker/runner. So far my fastest pace is my last 5K at 52:12. I walk/run because I love it. As others have said, it is not how fast but that you are doing it. I can’t even run a whole mile yet all at once. That is my goal. Then 2 miles, then 3 miles, then 5 miles, then 10, then half marathon, then a marathon. It’s all about getting off the couch and moving. Once again, thank you.

  121. Amy Ritz

    Love this BLOG. I fight with this every time I run. I run with a great group but most are fast or very fast and I am slow or very slow. But my feet are moving and I thank God for that. THis had done more for me than you will ever know

  122. Loved your blog! Yes, I run a 10+ pace also and yes, I’m giving it all I have! Not all of us are made or built to run fast, but we are running at the best of our abilities and pushing as hard as we can! Without us “slower runners”, you faster runners wouldn’t feel so good about yourselves! Just allow us to feel good about our own accomplishments!

  123. Michele

    This is great. I’m glad to know there are other people out there that are not fast runners, but still entering races. It currently takes me 15 minutes to complete a mile, but it used to take me 20 minutes. After finishing a 5K in 45 minutes and being proud of myself, one of the coordinators told me I should have entered the 1 mile fun walk instead. Well I knew I could go the entire 5K so why would I want to stop at 1 mile. My new logo “Don’t laugh because I’m last, I’m still ahead of those that never crossed the start line!”

  124. Jessica

    I wanted to thank you for reminding people that just because we’re not sprinting to the finish, does not mean that we’re not working hard!

    I shared your thoughts with a link on my sparkpeople blog, and you were very popular!

    Thanks again for the encouraging words,
    14 min/mile runner (so far)

  125. WOW You did get a lot of comments!! But as a non runner *IF* I ran I know I would feel the same way you did. 🙂 It is a great post!!

  126. Kati

    This is a great post! Both of my daughters are runners and I have tried to be one too, but a stubborn degenerative Achilles tendon has put me in a position where running is not an option. So, I walk. 5K in 50 minutes is my typical outing, which is approximately a 15.5 minute mile. And in May I will walk a 10K and see how long that takes. Whether you’re a 6 minute wonder or a 20 minute plugger, getting out and keeping at it is what’s important!

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  129. Thank you for this post! As I call myself a “slow” runner, I am still out there running!
    I am a teacher and my students constantly ask to race me. I tell them they are probably faster than I am but I can outrun them in distance.. They don’t get it!
    Great post!!

  130. I remember when I ran my first half marathon, some people wanted to know my time (2hrs 6 mins) before they even congratulated me on the accomplishment. Actually, going into the race I worried that I wouldn’t live up to the standard in the “blog world” if you know what I mean. BUT, after I ran that race and wrote my recap I felt so amazing that it didn’t actually matter. Sure, in the future i’d like to break that and set a PR.. but I know that the PR would be for me and my improvements in my own fitness levels, not for anyone else. Congrats on this post.. I think you probably helped out a lot of people!

  131. Jennifer

    I too run slow. I don’t jog period. I run 10-11 min mile. This is a great accomplishment for me. Last year I ran a half marathon @ a 12 min pace this year 11min. It is a personal goal. No I don’t win, but I sure as shit participate and thats enough for me. Keep going everyone. Chase your own goal, no one elses.

  132. Donna

    Wonderful wonderful post. I have a scarred lung from radiation treatments for Hodgkin’s lymphoma so I’m VERY happy doing between 12 and 13 minute miles–sometimes I can do 11 minutes but for no longer than a mile or two. But then. I’m lucky to still be alive! Don’t hate on us “slow” people folks; you may not know what we’re up against.

  133. Suzanne

    Well done Callie, from a potential wannabe runner who just wants to get through the thing and survive, I do fear being surrounded by people racing against one another. I’m not that competitive, more interested in being satisfied with my own achievements. 10k+ runners, I salute your effort and take inspiration from it!

  134. I am currently a 10+ min miler and so is a friend/co-worker of mine. She has run several races and I have not run any. I started out at a 14 min mile on the treadmill and could barely run a mile. I’m 5’11 and was 160 lbs – not over weight, just NEVER athletic. Now I am training for a 1/2 marathon and can run around 10-10:30/mile for a 10k so I know I’ve come a LONG way in 1 year.

    My question to those 10+ min milers out there tho… are you content to stay there or do you feel like you MUST get under 10? I guess just my logical thought is yes, everyone can run under 10 min/miles if they train long enough, even without crazy speed work, you will just get faster up to a certain point. But my co-worker doesn’t agree – she’s been running longer and went for a 12 min to a 10 min mile and is happy there. So what do you think… do we all have an inner gazelle just waiting to get out?

    • Tiffany

      I think that’s an interesting question. I’m sure everyone has a range within them of fitness, and with training, they could achieve a better time, up to a certain point as you said. And I’m sure genetics plays a big part too. But it’s really up to every person to decide their running goals–if any. I personally get a lot of satisfaction setting up training plans and trying to achieve times to the best of my ability–not because I’m going to win any races but just to see what I’m capable of. But I certainly have friends like your coworker who don’t care about pace. In general though, you’re right–the more you run, the faster you get, at least in my experience. But it’s really up to you, what you want to do! You can still be a runner and not ever race or focus on improving times at any distance. The only criteria to me is putting one foot in front of the other. But it sounds like you might be itching to try to speed up, and I fully encourage it! 🙂

  135. Anjanette

    I admire every one that tries to improve themselves. I ran the Red Bud 5k two months ago and ran a 12:36 pace. It is an inner battle inside of ourselves of how well and how fast we can finish the race. There is that one person that you like to pass, but when they pass you………..say to yourself holy moly I have to speed up! I have been running for two years, and I thought wow… 12:36 is fast! So I have been improving my time and guess what???? I ran a 10:04 mile today!!!!!! It can be done, and I don’t think I ever will be able to run an eight minute mile. All I can say is baby steps and we shall conquer. I would like to leave you with this quote and God bless you all.
    “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss it you will land among the stars.”

  136. mamacate

    Thanks for this post! I found it when I searched google for support for slow runners feeling discouraged. I started c25k over a year ago, and have taken no more than a week off since, and completed a half marathon, but I’m still barely under 13mm pace for a 5K. It’s frustrating to see so many people, including people heavier and less consistent than I am, zoom ahead to 10mm. I support them, but I just feel like I’ll never get there! Anyway, this post was exactly what I needed tonight. Thank you!

  137. Rosa

    I am signed up to run my first marathon on Sept. 1 and am terrified of being last or getting a DNF because they close the course at 6 hours. I am having a hard time wanting to show up because I don’t want to be embarrassed. After reading your blog and comments, I will show up and be proud of myself when I cross the finish line.

  138. Kimmy

    Callie I know this is about 7mos late but I am THRILLED to have come across this post!! I too am a slow runner and get so caught up and overly frustrated at being slow. Even more so lately I havent even had that one good run that you do get sometimes. Now maybe its this awful summer weather we have been having but either way I would love to just have a good run. Right now I am training for my first half marathon for the third time. The first time I got a super bad bladder infection that wouldnt go away then last year the doctors found 3 blood clots in my left calf (I had been having pain) and then that immediately let to them finding that I had Thyroid cancer. This was all just the end of August beginning of September of last year. I have been training for the half again thats Sept. 15 and other than some Pantars Fasciitis and running super slow I have built up to almost 10miles. My runs through the week are about 11:40 and my long runs are about 12:45. My goal is to just finish. And I would absolutely be thrilled with that!! I’m okay with building my speed however my body wants! Thanks again for the post!!

  139. Jason

    I think this is an amazing website, and truly awesome to see everyone encouraging one another. I have been a runner for two years, and currently am running solid 6 minute miles, however, that is not where I always find the joy in running. My wife is also a runner who hovers between 9-11 minute miles, it is when I am running with her that I found the true joy in running. She does her absolute best, and enjoys the runs. She enjoys the scenery and the atmosphere. When I am alone I am too busy concentrating on my speed I miss out on these joys. I also would like to promote you runners and say great job. I see too many times the fast runners getting all the praise, when in reality we are all running the same race and putting forth the best effort we can. I love going back after a race to finish with my wife, and cheer on the people continuing to finish. Overall, I just wanted to say great job to all, running is running.

  140. Lisa

    I just found your blog and post after running my first half marathon yesterday. I am a 11-14 minute runner but for the half it averaged 14 minutes. It was hard when the marathoners had caught up and passed me but I did not walk even though the last two miles were brutal. I have only been running about a year and it was so hard to train for. Sometimes us slower runners are discredited but I felt so much support from the people who stayed to cheer us on. I hope to get to a 10 minute mile in the future! :0

  141. Anita Balan

    I recently started running. I have run two races (an 8k – 1:04:32) and a 10 k ( 1:23:45) …In both races my pace was 14 min/mile…Planning on running a 10 miler in April 2013 and hoping to maintain 12 min/mile pace …That might a lofty goal… but I am going to try my best to reach it… I am so inspired by this blog and all those who have responded to it… Proud to be a runner …hope to keep running toward a healthier lifes

  142. Kate

    Thanks SO much for this post. I’ve completed 4 or 5 5K’s and an 8k. I am now training for a half marathon. I run slowly as well, about an 11:30 mile. When I started, I ran a 14:00 mile. Sometimes I feel like giving up. I am doing this for myself, not for others, but coming in as the last runner is no fun (although I beat most of the walkers lol). Thanks for this. I don’t feel so alone!

  143. SANDRA


  144. hayley

    It might be a little late to comment on this but THANK YOU! This encourages me to keep going 🙂 I don’t race, but i run every morning and I run a 10-11 minute mile.
    No matter how slow you’re going, remember you’re still lapping everyone thats sitting on the couch.

  145. I LOVE this post!!! Yes, we are running!! Maybe not as fast as the natural runners but we are out there pushing as hard as we can! It has taken me a years to truly believe I am a runner because I was so intimidated by my “fast” friends. Well, after 1 marathon, 2 halfs, and a handful of other shorter races, I can say I am a runner. And pace does not matter!!!!

  146. Jenny J

    Hey- good job! I am a slow runner as well! I still cant even jog a couple miles without stopping, and its slooow. ha. Besides being slow, im short. For every two steps my boyfriend takes, I have to take 3 to keep up. He can walk quickly as fast as my slow jog! With that said, I quit smoking and replaced it with something im far from talented at. Great job, we all have our reasons! We all start somewhere and its great that this is your start. That douche bag that made fun of you – Im sure he really stinks at a lot too, the difference is you arent excepting no for an answer!

  147. Kristen

    Im a wannabee to thank you for posting this! My husband also thinks my pace is to painful for him…. 🙂 at least Im out there doing by best and that is what matters!

  148. cameron

    I have no idea how long it takes me to run a mile 7 mins? 8 mins? So I shouldn’t say anything… But I will muster up a cheer from now on =]

  149. Rebekah

    I am a runner too but I tell you what, you didn’t know if that person in the car was on the way to an emergency! That was childish and if it was me in my car and you slapped it, I would have gotten out and knocked you out. People work hard for the things they have to have some spiteful person like you smacking their things!
    Other than that, this was a pretty good post.

  150. Kaitlyn

    Thank you so much for this. I am training right now & eventually want to run a marathon in October. It is SO encouraging to know my short little legs are not alone in their frustration, and that being the slowest in your age class (25, by the way) isn’t something to be ashamed about – especially since you are still faster than all of the people that didn’t bother to even run the race!

  151. ray

    Thanks for having this. in December I weighed 250 and I’m a 5’5″ male. I needed to make dietary and exercise improvements. Started running with a running for fitness class for a local college in January. we were timed in Jan and I ran a 14:40 mile. But, almost 5 mons later Im weighing between 194-197 right now. But this morning we got timed again and I ran a 12:12mile. I was really discouraged after all this work I’ve put in. So many other students had under 10 minute miles. And shaved minutes from 7 min miles to 5 mins, it just hurt knowing how far I am from running well again. Ive had bilateral shin splints and anterior tibial tendonitis for the last few months. Am doing a lot of precor work and cycling but I can’t get my times down. I’ve just been reading forums all day stuck in this pity party I’m having. Ah, anyways just wanted to vent. Good to know there are others that have the same times and are perfectly happy continuing to run. Thanks everyone

  152. Chris

    I stumbled on this post while looking for online tips for how to get my 5k time down to sub 20 minutes. It was a really fun read and the comments were so neat. Here are my thoughts on this topic, albeit from a different point of view. I’m 30 and just started running 2 months ago. I’ve been doing the local 5k in 23 minutes and I’m starting to develop a plan for my run training. What I’ve noticed right away is that it’s not about time, it’s about effort. I cross the finish line completely out of air, practically dying, and yet the top finishers look so relaxed and effortless as they finish. I realized that they’re probably putting less effort than me but they’ve just been training longer/harder and/or are natural runners. The furthest I’ve run is 10 miles at 10 min pace and that was a real challenge. I have nothing but respect for each and every person that gets out there on race day and puts in the effort. I’m actually terrified of running a marathon or even a half for that matter, at any pace. I talked to a gentleman at the end of my last race who said his pace is normally 10+, he is also a ultra runner and can keep that pace for 100+ miles, but said he can’t run a 7 minute mile 5k. So, I don’t care how “slow” you are, if you can run 1/2, 1, 5, 25, 100! miles at ANY pace, you’re cool in my book! Running is a gift that everyone has the right to appreciate.

  153. Coming from a walker’s perspective, I’d say that the region around a 10-15 minute pace is really fascinating, because a bent-knee shuffle can be taken as either fast walking or slow running, if at least one foot is always on the ground, as may happen for lots of people, and which means lower impact. This can be a wonderful way to cover long distances. To me, a 12-minute mile is really fast; my recent 5K was 46:17, or a 14:54 pace. So a lot of you “slow” people are going faster than I am, and shouldn’t let anyone make you doubt for a moment that you are true athletes as long as you are striving for a goal, which is what we share in common at all levels and speeds.

  154. cloudy

    you people seem to have a lot of self esteem issues. Please quit screaming at others and accept your slowness and show some shame. thxxxx

    • Julie

      Cloudy, what on earth are you trying to say? Seriously? Or are you one of those teenagers that is still young enough to think you know everything? (And not old enough yet to realize you really know nothing…)

      Callie, this was a great post. 🙂

  155. Jeannine

    I’ve been running, off & on, for 2 years & I still can’t run a 10 minute mile….I am running to the best of MY ability and FOR ME the 11:30 fastest mile I’ve ever run is quite an accomplishment .

  156. nobaboon

    WHY are you “racing” when you could benefit from some actual training? This new phenomenon of “13.1” stickers on the cars of people that walked a half marathon in 3.5 hours is ridiculous. Stop entering “races” and start pushing yourself to actually RUN.

    • starryeyed

      We all have to start somewhere, and not all of us start out at a 1.5 hour half marathon. I personally finished my first half marathon in 3 hours, and recently finished my forth in just under 2 hours and 15 minutes. So you Nobaboon should not be on here putting people down. And anyone who has read this… you go run your 10 plus minute mile and enjoy every second of it. Anyone who is a REAL runner will be proud of you for even being out there and trying.

  157. Camila Maria

    Love this post!!!! I started at like 18 min mile last summer when I did couch to 5k and finished my first race in 45 mins. My second in 37. I could barely run 1/2 a mile last year and now I can run 5 miles I’m working y way up to 6.2! Being able to run a 12 minute mile is an amazing feat for me!!!! One of my split paces was even 11:57 so I got under 12 minutes! I was definitely pushing through but you know I’m not embarrassed I’m proud of myself!!!!

  158. karen

    If us guys at the back of the pack were not there, The guys at the front wouldn’t look so good would they.So were doing them a favour.
    Can you imagine..running on a beautiful day and not being able to enjoy the view. Not my cuppa tea. I also like to pass the time of day with whoever is next to me.

  159. Lynda

    I was so happy to come across this. At the age of 45, I just started to run about four months ago; I ran three miles this morning (33 minutes). My fiance says “maybe you should look to step up your speed”… I told him I am good with my time; I am not competing, etc. Running in itself is an accomplishment for me; never thought I would be able to run. These posts is exactly what I need.. Thank you

  160. Julius

    I would like to say that I’m NOT a slower runner, but I do go through the pain and struggle like the rest of you. I’m a 36 and 5’3″. In the world of sports this is a recipe for disaster unless you want to be a horse jockey.

    The thing is none of you can understand the years of dedication and sacrifice it took to get where I’m at. Few people do. Most people on see the American sports as sports, but not running. They all say “Anyone can do that!”

    I’ve spent long hours on the road and am working my way up to running higher volume. None of you will know what it’s like to put in 60-70 miles of running a week. Yes I do have a certain level of natural ability, but I had to work for the rest. I’ve run in every kind of weather imaginable, and I still get shit for not being a traditional athlete.

    Big and Tall people have all the options when it comes to sports. I have to find what works for me and for most people that still doesn’t count. Yes I might not be anywhere close to an elite, but committed myself to my sport, because we all have to be good at something.

    Yes, most of you are just beginners, but that doesn’t mean you’ll always be where you are. Even as a faster runner I have my story to tell as well.

  161. Meg

    You Go Girl. I have friends that wish they could run a 10 min mile including me!! I loved your post!! Keep on running!!

  162. Mrs. 10 Minute Mile Lady

    I’m short. My legs are short. I feel if I run a mile in 10 minutes, I’ve run well. I’m a little offended that this post even exists. No one has ever said, “your 10 minutes is too long or anything insulting at all.” I was surprised to see this and now wonder…am I slow?? Then I think….OH WELL!! I’m running and I FEEL healthy. And THAT is what matters the most.

  163. Nora

    Thank you so much for this. This is totally me. I am slower than slow but I still go! I do think people grossly underestimate just how hard we work to achieve our fitness goals. The 5 minute milers work hard but they are also clearly gifted. Our achievements are all about grit and determination.

  164. AMEN! Thank you for posting this! I am a 10+ minute mile runner and proud of it!

  165. Wow. I would have been pissed too. I might be a 10 minute mile for shorter runs, but I was definitely a 12+ minute mile for my full yesterday! Im sorry you had to deal with that crap. People are rude. Good job though! You did it & you finished & you RAN it!!

  166. Shery

    Great post! Another reminder how individual running is for folks, but we can all respect our differences. Keep running!

  167. Mary Ann Keller

    Well said and thank you for speaking up for those of us who are not “elite” but run for the fun of it!

  168. Elizabeth Ross

    As a newbie runner I also run slow slow miles. And I really appreciate races that don’t pack up early, that accept and encourage slower runners by having supplies at the water stations for the last runner and still haves banana left at the end. I’m getting faster and I stay and cheer until the last runner is in. Yes we and they appreciate it a LOT! Th slow runner today is the faster runner tomorrow. You want to keep us coming back! Don’t piss us off by having no respect for everyone that is out here really trying!

  169. john

    From a 12-13 minute mile runner thank you love your post!

  170. I had an epiphany this year when I was toiling along on a treadmill, training for my first 10k and my first half-marathon. The guy on the treadmill next to me was going 2mph faster, but I was matching him stride for stride. My epiphany? I have short legs. I work twice as hard as taller people. Yes, I’m slower; but dammit I’m working hard!

    AMEN to this post!!!

  171. pat hulse

    Great commentary! I am so but keep going I am blessed with family that always cheers me to the finish line even if I am last

  172. amen sister. I had the same thing happen to me at a road race a few weeks ago, except it was the offers fault and boy was I pissed!

  173. As a slow runner, I totally agree. Great article.

  174. Julie

    i absolutely love this! I am a 12 min miler myself and no matter who runs past me I am doing the absolute best I can! I have felt all the same sentiments and it is nice to hear from other people who are in the same boat as me. It’s sometimes so easy to doubt myself in a race because I know I am not going to be the first, second, or maybe even hundredth person to finish but I love how you say it “I’m still winning”. Great post!

  175. Marissa

    Love this! Thank you!

  176. Leanne

    Thank you so much. I’ve been almost in tears today. I fished a 5k today with a 12 minute pace. Tomorrow is my first half marathon. It’s do discouraging to be made fun of for being slow or be reminded that grandma is passing me. It’d be nice for people to just be supportive you’re doing it. No one at my job believes I’ll finish. I can’t wait to prove them wrong. I may be a 12 minute miler but I’m consistent and I’ll finish.

  177. Lisa

    I came upon your post and it was very encouraging! I just started running and going to do my first 5K in 2 weeks. I can only do a 16 min mile for now and hoping that there will be a community of support and encouragement at this event.

  178. Natasha

    Thank you!! I used to be a competitive runner, easy runs were under 9 min miles and raced around 7 min miles. I became a cardiac patient a year ago and I am on beta blockers and have an implantable defibrillator, I have exercise induced ventricular tachycardia and began fainting on my runs and have experienced abnormal heart rates. I am allowed to run but must keep my heart rate in the 70% zone. I now run 11 minute miles and wear a heart rate monitor. I am just so happy to be able to stay fit and be running at all. So slow is great, I now do not care about pace. I actually really enjoy my easy runs.

  179. Lauren

    Thank you for this! I have been working hard towards my running goals but have been so caught up in making sure no one sees me to ridicule me that I have been running in some unsafe places. The other day I took my run to the street and had a tour bus pass me. Instead of jumping into the gutter face first, I waved. I don’t run fast but I am trying and I am the most fit I’ve ever been. It’s nice to read I’m not the only one. Run on sister!

  180. Dan

    I’m a 30 year old dad who is out of shape. Im trying to run but the best so far is a 11min mile. I have struggled due to heel Spurs on my Achilles’ tendon. Sometimes the pain in unbelievable. I feel you. Give us slow pokes a cheer!!

  181. Dan McConnell

    I’m a 30 year old dad who is out of shape. Im trying to run but the best so far is a 11min mile. I have struggled due to heel Spurs on my Achilles’ tendon. Sometimes the pain in unbelievable. I feel you. Give us slow pokes a cheer!! No pain no gain they say. You can rest assured I’m feeling the pain. For all of us 10+ Minute mile people I salute you.

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