Yes, I ran a marathon. No, I am not a Kenyan.

When I tell someone about how I successfully completed my first marathon they always get this look all over their face…

admiration

jealousy

DISBELIEF!

It’s actually pretty disheartening, especially when the look is followed by the questions, “Are YOU serious? YOOOOOU ran a marathon? You know that’s twenty six miles?”

I feel like it is insulting on so many levels.

#1. I am not an idiot. I know the distance of a marathon. I covered every inch of the race.

#2. I am not a liar. I would not tell you that I did ANYTHING that I had not actually done.

#3. I know that the reason that I get this intense response is because of my body. I HAVE CURVES. I will always have curves. When I was fourteen I had curves. I could run 100 miles a week and I would still not have that stereotypical marathoner body.

Here I am at 115 pounds.

Ignore my friend's face. She thought she was being funny.

Yep still curvy.

People have this idea that in order to be a marathoner you have to have legs that are miles long, and be incredibly tall without an ounce of body fat.

I feel like this description is fairly reflective of the elite athletes, but not at all accurate when looking at the middle of the pack runners. One of my favorite things about the marathon was the diversity of the runners. Frail old ladies and Jewish men wearing hats were on the course finishing strong. The running community is very inclusive.

We’re not all Kenyans, nor should we be.

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4 thoughts on “Yes, I ran a marathon. No, I am not a Kenyan.

  1. Layne, your ‘curves’ (as you call them) are what make you the most attractive girl in ANY room! This tells me you are also one of the most fit. I have two trucker friends who have completed marathons in the last two years. One is 37 and one is 50. They both really enjoy breaking the stereotype! You go, girl! You’re well on your way to making a new stereotype for marathoners as really cute girls with infectious smiles and personality!

  2. Could not agree more! Body type doesn’t necessarily determine speed or running talent for us non-professionals. Super skinny people can be slow, and curvier ladies or hefty men can be fast. That’s another thing I like about running 🙂

  3. I have yet to run a full – but I love it when people ask – how far is that???

    I totally agree with you about the middle of the pack runners – in Baltimore, there is a guy who juggles the whole time – yes, all 26.2 miles.

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