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Running Will Kill You!

Seems like there as many "Running Will Kill You!" studies by non-running doctor's then there are water cups at the Boston Marathon.

Studies use the following ratings: "light," "moderate," or "vigorous" jogger. It's obviously biased because I was a "heavy" jogger; a "very heavy" jogger. And the truth is this; calling a runner a jogger is as offensive as calling your coworker the "B" word. And I don't mean beautiful. ;)

I already tried having heart failure in 2011. I am done with that crap. My favorite "running is the new smoking" study showed that there were 2 deaths over a period of 10 years.

Are you kidding me? More people die in a year from choking on stale chocolate cake!

My cardiologist says my heart is in great shape. My once 20% ejection (not erection!) fraction is great, resting pulse is at 48 and my BP is about the same as when I was a teenager. My max heart rate is 178 which is better than average for my age. 

I had knee surgery and foot surgery and rotator cuff surgery and heart surgery and cancer surgery and needed a bag of frozen peas for my nuts surgery and a ton of other procedures that included sticking things in my &$$.

I still run.

This week I missed the Dublin Marathon due to my health stuff. :( I still run.

Want to know the real reasons that running is bad for you? It's addictive. According to MediLexicon International, these are the symptoms of addiction. I am adapting them to running.

The person cannot stop - because it will kill your race time. DUH!
Increased appetite – I finally got my movement to equal my intake. I have to run 50 miles a week.
Taking an initial large dose - Starting the race too fast. Running without a warm up.
Insomnia - a common symptom of addiction also known as pre-race jitters. The bigger the race, the sooner it starts.
Continues despite health problems - taking a cast off to run 5 miles, not listening to all sorts of pain etc.
Social and/or recreational sacrifices - You don't run, you don't understand.
Maintaining a good supply - Fortunately there is plenty right outside the front door. The higher quality stuff is at races.
Risky behavior - the addicted individual take risks to make sure they can obtain their substance, by stealing or trading sex for money or running shoes.
Risks while under the influence - the addict may engage in risky activities, such as hugging people they don't know at the finish line or taking runs with people they have never met from Facebook groups.
Dealing with problems - an addicted person commonly feels they need their drug to deal with their problems. Running cures everything.
Obsession - an addicted person may spend more and more time and energy focusing on ways to make time for running, travel for running and to improve their performance.
Secrecy and solitude - in many cases the addict may hide new shoes from their significant other or register for races on their anniversary weekend. Run alone without music.
Denial - actually, no runner has a problem. Not even a little one.
Withdrawal symptoms - one word: marathon tapering! OK, two. Anger, resentment, food. Did I mention food?
Excess consumption - run streaks, marathons, ultras, back-to-back half marathons, 3- and 4-way challenges, there is just not enough running.
Blackouts - cannot remember chunks of time. In particular, how you felt after the marathon when signing up for the next one.
Having stashes - GUs, Stingers, protein bars, and shoes. It seems hoarding is a side-effect of running.
Having problems with the law - this is a symptom of impaired judgment. Not stopping for crossing signals, running on the wrong side of the road during races, indecent exposure while relieving yourself in public - the list goes on.
Financial difficulties - shoes, race fees, travel expenses, RnR memberships. The cost of running is daunting.
Relationship problems - they just don't understand. I'll find a runner.
Dropping hobbies and activities - progressive addiction may stop doing things he/she used to enjoy such as running for fun.

Thanks for the votes and comments!

74 votes + -


itzWicks wrote 69 months ago:
If there is a cure for running, I DON'T WANT IT.

Great column, my friend!!
Time2LoseWeightNOW wrote 69 months ago:
"Denial - actually, no runner has a problem. Not even a little one."
my favorite!
farmboyphotography wrote 69 months ago:
Funny stuff as always, David! I enjoy how you take challenges and deal with them with humor instead of whining.

But dammit, your joking around covers all my excuses so I feel like I either have to get new excuses or I need to get my butt in gear. Thanks a lot, buddy! ;-)
dsjohndrow wrote 69 months ago:
Yo, farmboy! I can write you some excuses and a fake note from the doctor if you need it. :)
tonybalony01 wrote 69 months ago:
Holy cow! This describes one of my friends to the letter. I thing she may be addicted to running. It may be time to stage an intervention.
DarcyHamlin wrote 69 months ago:
Hey, scientists! How's that cure for cancer coming along? Honestly!
ncfitbit wrote 69 months ago:
Haha! I especially love the Risks while under the Influence. Occasionally, my husband will tilt his head and ask "how do you know these people you are running with again?"
girlgroves wrote 69 months ago:
I often read your blog posts, and they always make me smile. But I actually identify with this one - a lot! Only this morning I thought to myself "I actually LIKE running - it cured a lot for me last night - who would have thought?!". I think I'm on the road to addiction!?
con31791 wrote 69 months ago:
No dog in this fight, but someone could write a post saying, "I've smoked a pack a day for 30 years and I'm cancer free! What's up with these biased studies saying smoking is bad for you!" I've known someone who does that bill. Statistics are large-number helpful, but less so for individuals.
moragadams wrote 69 months ago:
Great Blog.....All so very true!
rightoncommander wrote 69 months ago:
con31791 - Research showing running is bad for you are nothing more than case studies in poor research design.

One study was reported a few months ago with the claim "too much running is bad for you". No kidding, too much of anything is bad for you, otherwise it wouldn't be too much. This study reported an increased risk of death for the "heavy" runners' group, with 2 deaths over a decade out of a tiny cohort of around 30 study members if memory serves. Because naturally most of the study subjects did NOT run regularly, drawing dramatic conclusions from the tiny number who did was irresponsible. They didn't even know how those two people died. But if you cut data in enough different ways, you're bound to find a surprising result eventually, even though results like this are valid only if you actually designed your study to test this hypothesis, and probably could not be repeated if you re-ran the study. This kind of over-interpretation of results is sadly extremely common, due to the kudos in the academic community if your paper is picked up in the general media.

There is a giant difference between the huge body of evidence that smoking shortens your life and this kind of data-torturing of tiny studies that spits out results that running is bad for you. You could torture 15 studies that DON'T show an increased risk of death, but that isn't news. Journalists are more interested in "Man bites dog" stories.
ryry_ wrote 69 months ago:
Which study are you quoting that concluded "Running will kill you!"?
Anniepi66 wrote 69 months ago:
What doesn't kill you will make you stronger. Except for bears. Bears will kill you! Love your blogs! To the point and always funny - even if there's a serious message contained within.
kshatriyo wrote 69 months ago:
What doesn't kill you makes you stronger is the dumbest quote I have ever heard, and offensive to people who truly suffered.
Anniepi66 wrote 69 months ago:
Kshatriyo, the 'kill you' quote I wrote, I've never believed it either. And I wrote it only to add the 'bear' part. It is from a meme my brother sent me once when I was in a very bad place. I laughed out loud at the "Bears will kill you." So if you took offense at me writing it, sorry. It wasn't meant to be serious. I've suffered, watched suffering and held the hand of some of the suffering when they died. Just thought it went along with the theme of the blog.
Deena_Bean wrote 69 months ago:
My place of work is dropped into the middle of a 10 mile nature trail through mostly wooded areas, a small waterfall and lots of ups and downs throughout. I'd be lying if I said that people haven't died on runs through there. I still run, but I'm pretty aware of my limits. My company has an onsite fire/medic unit that is always the one called for problems on the trail (because they're more familiar with it than the local fire/medic units). We always get e-mails at work to be careful, recognize signs of distress, etc. It's always sad when another drops - they're almost always in general good health, and between 30-60 years old.
lindagrimm904 wrote 68 months ago:
I'm retired! I enjoy it. Except I don't have enough money. But I love all of your blogs. And also, my health is not as good as it was when I retired last year in March 31st. But enough of me! I really liked all those different things you sent us. I would like to be friends with you. I hope everyone has a Terrific & Blessed Tuesday!
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