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Running Quotes


You can learn from everything you do, including and especially running. If others make jokes about your running, let them. There's nothing you can do about that. You can, however, control your own self-criticism, or at least be aware of it. Running is a way to help yourself and to achieve the things you want. That's hardly trivial. Running clears the mind the way a summer storm blows the smog and haze from the sky. And with a clear mind and strong heart, what isn't possible in this life?

- Kevin Nelson -

Every time I fail, I assume I will be a stronger person for it. I keep on running figuratively and literally, despite a limp that gets more noticeable with each passing season, because for me there has always been a place to go and a terrible urgency to get there.

- Joan Benoit Samuelson -

The greatest battle is not physical but psychological. The demons telling us to give up when we push ourselves to the limit can never be silenced for good. They must always be answered by the quiet, the steady dignity that simply refuses to give in. Courage. We all suffer. Keep going.

- Graeme Fife -

Stepping outside the comfort zone is the price I pay to find out how good I can be. If I planned on backing off every time running got difficult I would hang up my shoes and take up knitting.

- Desiree Davila -

Struggling and suffering are the essence of a life worth living. If you're not pushing yourself beyond the comfort zone, if you're not demanding more from yourself - expanding and learning as you go - you're choosing a numb existence. You're denying yourself an extraordinary trip. 

- Dean Karnazes -

Become detached from your performance. This is the process of actually suspending judgment about the outcome of your running efforts. You must be truly able to 'let go,' to become a split personality of sorts. It’s not easy; after all, you are striving to do your very best, yet you have to not care about the result. Running the race should be the most important thing in your life while you are running it, yet you can’t care how it turns out. If you have trouble with this, ask yourself: Does caring help me or hurt me? Caring certainly helps you get to the starting line, but once there, you must simply trust your training and your ability to execute.

- Andy Palmer -

Champions do not become champions when they win the event, but in the hours, weeks, months and years that they spend preparing for it. The victorious performance is merely the demonstration of their championship character.

- T. Alan Armstrong -

It's not uncommon to go to bed thinking, 'Darn, I should have run today.' It's not common to go to bed thinking, 'I shouldn't have run today.'

- Scott Douglas -

Even if there were two of me, I still couldn't do all that has to be done. No matter what, though, I keep up my running. Running every day is a kind of lifeline for me, so I'm not going to lay off or quit just because I’m busy. If I used being busy as an excuse not to run, I'd never run again. I have only a few reasons to keep on running, and a truckload of them to quit. All I can do is keep those few reasons nicely polished.

- Haruki Murakami -

I can't understand why everyone wants to talk to me, but I guess I'm getting used to it now. It's strange to have people telling me that this was such a powerful act of kindness and using words like 'humanity.' It's weird. When I hear words like that I think of Harriet Tubman and saving people's lives. I don't consider myself a hero. I just did what I knew was right and what I was supposed to do.

- Meghan Vogel -
( On carrying an opposing runner across the finish line this past Saturday at a Division III girls state meet.)

It's not the races you enter that count. It's your runs in training and sticking with it. It's how you adjust to injury and how you recover that makes you a good runner.

- Dave Hladysh -

As runners, we all go through many transitions—transitions that closely mimic the larger changes we experience in a lifetime. First, we try to run faster. Then we try to run harder. Then we learn to accept ourselves and our limitations, and at last, we can appreciate the true joy and meaning of running.

- Amby Burfoot -
1,001 Pearls of Runners' Wisdom

I run because long after my footprints fade away, maybe I will have inspired a few to reject the easy path, hit the trails, put one foot in front of the other, and come to the same conclusion I did: I run because it always takes me where I want to go.

- Dean Karnazes -

Motivation is a sly fellow. A real slippery eel. Just when you think you have a firm grip on motivation, life’s many distractions will rudely intrude and then to your personal dismay, you start wondering why regular workouts have suddenly become sporadic or regrettably a thing of the past. That’s why setting specific training or racing goals are critical for long-term success… Often times you might feel burned out and in need of a break from running. By all means, take it. Refresh your mental batteries. But don’t go slack. Stay active with say hiking, biking, or swimming. Researchers have found that after twelve weeks of no exercise, a highly trained athlete will have squandered a significant amount of fitness and conditioning.

- Bill Katovsky -
1,001 Pearls of Runners' Wisdom

Stadiums are for spectators. We runners have nature and that is much better.

- Juha Vaatainen -

We runners don't need a lot. It is not what we have but what we enjoy that constitutes our abundance.

- Dean Karnazes -

I had over-trained. I put too much pressure on myself because I wanted that gold medal too much. If I had trained 15 percent less, I would have won. I was training like a crazy person. There was a lack of self-confidence and a lack of maturity. An athlete does not only train his body. He trains with his mind.

- Hicham El Guerrouj -
(Moroccan runner on his second-place finish in the 1,500 meters at the )

I'm always ready to run. I wear running shorts and shoes wherever I go. I just don't care what I look like. Changing my clothes is a waste of time.

- Pam Reed -
(First woman to become the overall winner of the Badwater Ultramarathon)

Your mind can make you train, your body can create power, but only your heart can make you a champion.

- Joe Newton -
(Cross country and track coach at York High School in Elmhurst, IL. wit)

Running! If there's any activity happier, more exhilarating, more nourishing to the imagination, I can't think of what it might be. In running the mind flees with the body, the mysterious efflorescence of language seems to pulse in the brain, in rhythm with our feet and the swinging of our arms.

- Joyce Carol Oates -

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