Hello! I feel like we talk about NOT comparing ourselves to others a lot on social media. We all know we shouldn’t compare our bodies or our lives to pictures on Instagram or Facebook. And you might think you’re really good at NOT comparing yourself to the people you follow on social media or in real life.
Maybe you know better than to compare your weight, body, hair, size of your nose, ability to plate a salad like you’re Martha Stewart… you know better than to judge yourself based on someone else’s measuring stick.
But are you comparing your fitness level or running ability to someone else’s?? Let’s talk about it!
It’s one thing to say, “I wish I was that fast!” under an Instagram post. Sure that can be a different way to compliment someone – you’re telling them they’re fast!
But you also shouldn’t compare other fitness stats to someone else. Things like: your running pace, half marathon time (or any race distance time), body in race photos, number of races or miles run, etc…
If you want to compare yourself to someone else make sure that you stack it up compare yourself to someone has ALL the same physical traits, experience, financial resources, time, mental strength and access to running resources/information – before comparing.
So I put together a list of factors to consider before you compare yourself to another runner. If ALL of these are identical to your current situation… then, you can use someone else’s info to help you assess how you’re doing. But if you do find someone that has ALL of these factors exactly the same as you – they might be you from the future. And that means you have found a time machine and instead of comparing yourself… maybe just in the time machine and do something epic instead, okay?
Checklist Before Comparing Yourself to Another Runner:
- Age / Height / Weight / Sex / Illnesses or Health Complications
- Length of time running
- Athletic Background
- Fitness Level
- Training plan
- Training resources available
- Running gear – shoes, clothes, technology
- Any coaching or access to people with extensive knowledge
- Time for running and cross training
- Time for recovery, rest and advanced treatments
- Money/Resources for running gear, training plans, books, professional support
- Diet / Dietary preferences / Allergies
- Nutrition knowledge
- Time available for cooking, eating balanced meals, grocery shopping and meal prep
- Injury History / Current Injury status
- Body Type including height, weight and athletic strengths
- Mental strength and confidence
- Goals (their goals vs your goals), length of time working towards goals
You shouldn’t compare yourself to anyone else. You have different strengths and weaknesses than the people are you.
Instead of comparing yourself to someone else… track your progress. This is just you assessing your improvement based on your past or future goals and training.
Factors you can note to determine your progress:
How fast you can run a mile … 3 miles… or a set distance that you can use to assess performance
How much effort it takes to run a certain workout. Did it used to kill you to run a certain hill but now it’s easy peasy? Track that in a log using an effort scale.
Your race times.
Your own goals – fitness, personal, balance, etc.
Note – you have to set a goal if you want to be able to track progress. If you don’t have a specific factor to compare different points in your training – how can you know you are improving? If it’s not based on numbers then it’s just your opinion on that day. Then, you might end up measuring your progress based on how you feel any given day – which isn’t super helpful.
Set a goal. Be honest with your current fitness level. Log your training and progress. Learn from your mistakes. Celebrate your improvements. Keep going!
Watch the new Amy Schumer movie… I Feel Pretty
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