Ask a Monican–Runner doomed to walk

Hello! It’s been too long since I’ve done an Ask a Monican, but they’re back!

Here are the questions from today:

1. How do I deal with friends giving me a hard time about running instead of going out with them?

2. How do I deal with cat calls and horn honks on a run?

3. The doctor says I can’t run anymore! Help!!!

Email me your questions to runeatrepeat at or leave them in the comments

The video cut me off but do you have any advice or words of encouragement for our friend that has to walk instead of run now?


  1. says

    1. Join a running group because there you won’t find anyone there giving a hard time about running instead of going out :) But seriously, have a conversation and let your friends know that running is very important to you and why, and that you would be really grateful if occasionally they would plan some social gatherings that better fit your training schedule. Also, see if you can include them in your running. Maybe it seems really foreign to them. Maybe invite them to a race you’re doing or to help you shop for new shoes.

    2. Embrace it! Sure it’s a tad embarrassing but enjoy the compliment! If it starts to become more like harassment, though, maybe change up the route a bit to include some less busy streets.

    3. This would devastate most runners. Can you go walking, hiking, cycling, volunteer at races so you stay connected to the community, yoga, swimming, weight training, etc? Running is very taxing on the body, so this may be a perfect time to really embrace a new sport, at least for the period of time recommended by your doctor. If this is something you disagree with a doctor about, by all means, get a second opinion!

  2. says

    Nothing wrong with walking. In fact I like to walk at the end of a work day to de-stress. Gives me a break between the office and home.

  3. Serenity says

    1. Don’t tell them when you run

    2. Wear head phones

    3. Stop running and find something else. What’s the point of doing something that’s going to hurt you unless our suicidal.

  4. Emily says

    While out for a run I was told on 2 separate occasions by the same young 20s boy to “put more clothes on”. He walks around the same time I run. I’m not in body builder shape but I know I look fine in a sports bra and capris. First time i ignored him…2nd time I told the punk to f*** off and get out of my way….then he called me a beast. I took that as a compliment. I’ve seen him a few times since and he’s been quiet. Stand your ground ladies! Well…as long as you do not feel in danger. Then run like hell!

  5. Tracy says

    #3. If you can’t run, do what you can. If you enjoy participating in races, you still can. You’re just going to have to change your perspective regarding finishing time. There are tons of people who walk halfs/fulls. Walking is better than sitting on the couch :)

  6. says

    I have low back pain & was told to stop running as well… I keep doing it…. I know – not the best advice. But I have the same issue of just not wanting to give up running. I’m going to do the same though & embrace the idea of walking. its still exercise, healthy, good for you, & not as taxing. The benefits are still amazing – & hopefully no pain is one of those benefits. I think its all mind set.
    Love the Vlog! Keep answering more questions :)

  7. says

    Great advice! For number three I am so sorry : ( I tore my ACL in April and had a small tear in my meniscus too. I had surgery at the end of May and will be going without running 4/25 – 8/21 HORRIBLE. Since then though I have been keeping up at the gym and some of my new favorite exercises are rowing, swimming, biking (I’m not allowed on a bike outside yet, eventually though I will take it out of the gym), incline treadmill walking, and…. LIFTING!! I do circuit training / HIIT / interval training / whatever you want to call it 4 or 5x a week now. Basically pick some basic moves (push ups, squats (there are a million kinds), lunges, core, you get the picture and create some circuits! I have a bunch on my site but they are supppperrr easy to make and take between 20 and 40 minutes. I promise you will still feel like a BOSS after.

  8. says

    In regards to number two. I just give them a wave or a salute. Got to love the fans!

    I’ve never really been told that I couldn’t run unless you count the time I had a high ankle sprain in college. I did everything I could that didn’t involve that ankle until I was allowed back on the bike! Also, there is no shame in walking. I’ve seen people walk half marathons which is just as impressive.

  9. says

    Yikes, no running!! I’d go mental(er) for sure. Hang in there, so many options out there and if not you can always just vent to us :) Plus youir hair looks great in the video so that’s a plus!

  10. says

    Thanks for the advice on the cat calls and hollering while running! I’ve come to just giving men the stink eye when they do that to me while I’m running or just plain ignoring them! At least they’re attracted to athletic women??! 😉

  11. says

    1. Get new friends. Lame but kind of true. I have friends I might go out with but the majority of my friends are runners and understand the running thing. Over the years I have found the friends that stayed in my life were the ones that supported my passions (running and fitness) and not the ones who put it down or had different lifestyles.

    2. I either ignore it completely or sometimes say something smart ass back (depending on what they say) usually just ignore it though and smile… take it as a compliment.

    3. Get a pet you can walk. I broke my foot last year in a car accident. I moved in with my parents for a few months between apartment leases and it happened to be at this same time I had my foot broken. They have dogs that I can walk and when I was able to start walking but not running (when I got the cast off) it made it easier having the pup to walk with. Made me feel like i was at least helping the pup and myself, and it made me feel less bad about not being able to run.

  12. Jen (@JenCanRead) says

    For #2 – Cat-calling is one thing, and in general I try to ignore it (why let ignorant creeps dictate your running schedule?). But on occasion folks will honk in solidarity, so also be mindful that it can sometimes be a positive thing. I remember one incident last summer where I was running and I heard a honk. It was about 85 degrees out and humid at 5:00 p.m. I turned around to glare, and the WOMAN who honked caught my eye, clapped, and (literally) said “You go, girl!”

    After the Boston Marathon, there was a LOT of honking and hollering at runners in my area also. Especially in the month that followed, but even now, a lot of folks with 26.2 or 13.1 or 70.3 stickers will honk.

    So, yeah. There are some creeps out there that don’t understand cat-calling and honking is gross and not really a compliment. But also keep in mind that sometimes maybe it’s just folks trying to be encouraging.

    Overall though, I’d just ignore that weirdos though.

  13. says

    Love these questions, For person #1, I had similar problems. My long runs are on Sundays so I don’t drink on Saturday nights but rather than not going out I just offer to DD and now everyone loves when I’m in training.

  14. says

    You can do a lot of things while walking — if you can add some lunges (minus knee injuries), trunk twist, push ups, star jumps. Walking can also be a personal therapy session to cope with not being able to run or other personal issues. I have fallen in love with walking. It’s me time :)

  15. Sarah says

    In regards to question #3, the lady who asked that question needs to get a second opinion. If you have “runners knee” aka patellofemoral pain syndrome, you can DEFINITELY run again! Runners knee occurs usually from overuse therefore resulting in your kneecap (patella) rubbing in its groove and cause pain. Pain can occur from your hip, legs, knees since they are all aligned. I would recommended putting ice on your knee if that is where your discomfort is for 20-30 min a day. Elevate the knee with a pillow or towel underneath it. You can take ibuprofen unless you have a constrainindication to taking an NSAID (do not take if taking”blood thinners”). Do you need new shoes? I would recommend using a knee sleeve which you can buy at Target. You can work with physical therapy for exercises to increase your hamstring muscles (they connect to your knee). You should never be told you can never run bc you have runners knee, it involves strengthening your hamstrings. Usually people develop runners knee from overuse

    Second-a torn meniscus does not mean you can never run again either. The same kind of treatment applies.

    I would highly recommended that you find another healthcare provider as you are able to run again. Also bring your MRI images with you to your new provider so they can see how severe the meniscus is torn, more intervention maybe required then. After all, if an athlete tears their ACL, they are back on the playing field in a tear or so. You will run again I promise! I have had both injuries and run at least four times a week :)

  16. Alisa says

    For #3… (I actually posted this comment originally on a post –

    I’ve had different overuse injuries twice (tendinitis in my ankle, a near-stress fracture in my hip); each time I thought the world was over because I couldn’t run. And it wasn’t. After my very first half marathon last summer, my hip starting feeling off again, and I decided that I was ok with a month or two off. I got into weight lifting, spinning, even yoga; try to focus on what your body can do, not what it can’t. Six months went by and I realized I hadn’t run once. Now I run, maybe once a week max. I worry that if I want to start running more than a few miles again, I’ll have lost my ability (not that I was all that fast), but I realize it’s something you can always come back to. I think the hard part is that when you’re training, “I’m a runner” is such a part of your identity – it’s hard to give that up.

  17. HANNHUNG says

    Thanks for your encouragement and advice Monica and thanks to your readers! I’m the one who wrote in with question number 3. Update… having surgery this Friday for a torn meniscus (3 separate tears). I’m much better now just knowing what is wrong and I actually like my 10 mile walk better than my 6 mile runs so that’s all good. Not feeling sorry for myself anymore! In fact, I just saw this because I was in Yosemite hiking/walking with my family and just got back and you’re right (!), you can walk anywhere and with anyone. Thanks for that. I can walk, spin, lift and aqua jog (which I LOVE). Deferred my Disney half marathon for next year and I’m excited to WALK it. :) Thanks everyone!

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