A Whole New World for Runners Too

A Whole New World for Runners Too

Honestly, I think for most people, if we never hear the words COVID-19 ever again, it would be just fine. But the truth of the matter is, our lives may never be the same again. Right now, we’re just beginning a journey into the totally unknown. We hope and pray that things will turn around, a vaccine will be developed, and the world be saved from total personal, corporate, and national fiscal implosion . . ., but there are no guarantees.

Here’s the deal. Things COULD be resolved in two or three weeks. But the reality is, August may be a more realistic time frame, but by then there will be a LOT of people and businesses in great financial distress…not to mention the many thousands of people/families who will be dealing with medical bills that they have no idea how to pay. Imagine, the families that are hit hard by layoffs or reduced hours and THEN have a member of the family hospitalized. IF a person is hospitalized, it appears that the length of time they are in the hospital isn’t just a day . . . we’re talking a week or multiple weeks . . . tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.

What does this have to do with running? Well, I think we all know that as runners we too often tend to believe we are healthier than a great majority of the population. I believe we need to take this seriously, whether you’re a “millennial” who doesn’t feel this will really impact you much or an older runner who has never been sick a day in his/her life.

The big thing about COVID-19 is that you may have it and NEVER know it. The symptoms so slight that you don’t even realize that you’re infected. Problem is, even though YOU are not exhibiting symptoms, if you’re infected, you ARE a carrier. I was stunned by the images of college kids shoulder-to-shoulder at beaches in Florida for spring break. Chances may be pretty good that none of them will die from COVID-19. Chances are VERY HIGH (I would assume) that those unknowingly infected will pass the virus on to a loved one (parent, grandparent, girlfriend, boyfriend) who WILL either die OR pass it on to someone else who is vulnerable. So, while the college students party in their ignorance and short-sightedness and what could be described as selfishness, others will die because of it.

I could go on and talk about the issues of ventilators and the availability of rooms, not to mention the health workers who fall ill due to serving those who are ill with the virus, but for runners, I urge you all to be part of the solution and not the problem. If you run, run alone or with distance between you and a fellow runner . . . I mean, do you know if your running buddy’s son’s girlfriend’s brother has a best friend who went on Spring Break and was exposed to the virus, has it, and isn’t exhibiting any signs of it? I mean, that’s the kind of thing we have to keep in mind. It spreads without always leaving a clear trail. The social distancing is about keeping the spread of the virus down – or at least slowing it down so that others have time to recover and hospital beds and ventilators are available.

So, can you run? Yes! I would recommend it! Run in groups? IF you can maintain distance. Do you spit while you run? Then run alone or run well off to the side and spit. Should you run if you feel a cold common on? Are you SURE it’s just a cold? Tough to tell anymore. My recommendation would be for any type of even slight illness, you need to be sure to allow your body to marshal all of its strengths to fight it. MANY people are recovering from COVID-19 in their own homes (which also means, their families are now on the quarantine list), but it sure beats hospitalization. In other words, run, eat right, don’t work/run/exercise until exhaustion, get the rest you need, be a statistic FOR health and wisdom. And even though it might not make you popular with your children, understand that THEY could become carriers without symptoms that place you and others in harm’s way, so do what you can to make sure they practice extreme hygiene and social distancing . . . and if your older children have decided to ignore the advice of social distancing, let them know they can visit sometime after August (and hopefully a vaccine will be available by then).

Have an awesome (and responsible) run today!

Dan

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