Quiz: What's Your Running Style?

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What's Your Running Style?

Written by Jennipher Walters, Certified Personal Trainer

How you run says a lot about you as an exerciser--what motivates you, what pushes you, what makes you feel accomplished. How you run also says a lot about, well, you as a person, too. Are you someone who--quite literally--stays the course? Do you thrive on competition? Do you tend to go all out on your weekend runs only to be so sore and tired during the week that you can barely muster a walk?

We all have our own style when it comes to running, but there are some common types of running personalities out there. And all runners have strengths, weaknesses and opportunities--if they train wisely. Take our short quiz below (write down your answer for each of the five questions) to see what type of runner you are and how you can best use your style to your advantage!

1. Your ideal run would be:

A) A steady run through the park with my favorite tunes playing

B) A 5K that I've been training for over the last few months

C) Sprints followed by easy walking

2. Which article would you find the most appealing to read?

A) "Going the Distance Injury Free"

B) "Train--and Win--Just Like a Professional Runner"

C) "Cross-Train for Success"

3. If you had to pick a song that describes how you think about running, it would be:

A) Steady as She Goes, by The Raconteurs

B) Fast As You Can, by Fiona Apple

C) Hot N Cold, by Katy Perry

4. Which best describes your running shoes?

A) Comfortable with plenty of cushion and shock absorption

B) The latest and greatest technology in running footwear

C) Versatile and able to handle other fitness activities

5. What are you most proud of after finishing a great run or race?

A) Maintaining my pace without feeling sluggish or running out of energy

B) Beating my running partner at the finish line

C) Finishing

Calculate your score (total number of As, Bs and Cs).

Mostly As: Your Style is Slow and Steady

If you answered mostly As, then you're a slow and steady runner! You generally like to run longer distances but rarely vary your speed. You like to find a comfortable pace and just enjoy the run. Your motto is "Slow and steady wins the race!"

Strengths: You are dedicated and really put your miles in. You are an excellent candidate for long distance races.
Weakness: Even though you may want to, you have trouble increasing your running speed.
Take a Cure From: The "Mostly C's" group (Stop and Go runners). They aren't as dedicated as you are, but they do know how to vary things up with intervals, which are essential to gaining strength and power! Also, be sure to take a day off from running every now and again. You may love running, but you can learn the joys of cross-training.
Advice: Try running intervals to push yourself.

Mostly Bs: Your Style is Fast and Furious

If you answered mostly Bs, then you're a fast and furious runner! You are the definition of competitive and are always looking for a better route, shoe or gadget to help you be the best that you can be!

Strength: You are always motivated and push yourself to go that extra mile. You rarely miss a workout!
Weakness: Your competitive attitude may turn less-competitive runners off, limiting your training partner options. And sometimes you can push yourself too hard and have trouble knowing when to slow down or take a recovery day.
Take a Cure From: The "Mostly A's" group (Slow and Steady runners). They're dedicated, too, but are usually easier on their bodies and know when to call it quits. They run because they love to run—not just to win.
Advice: Offer to mentor a runner who is slower than you are and schedule a weekly run with him. Run at his pace--not yours--and fully enjoy his company.

Mostly Cs: Your Style is Stop and Go

If you answered mostly Cs, then you're a stop and go runner! Your motivation to run regularly tends to wax and wane, but when you do run, you really like to go all out. You enjoy jogging but sometimes find it hard to fit all of the fitness activities that you like to do into your schedule.

Strength: You love to work out and don't have a problem pushing yourself.
Weakness: You like to run, but don't do it regularly enough to really see results or make much progress.
Take a Cure From: The "Mostly B's" group (Fast and Furious runners). Sign up and train for a race. Having a tangible goal in mind like running a 5K or a 10K will help you to commit to running, but still leave you with enough time to do other activities.
Advice: Find and run with a training group. Making running more social will help you reach your goal of running a race and will be fun enough that you won't want to stop running along the way.

What's Your Style?

There is no right or wrong style of running, and all types of runners can learn from each other! What style of runner are you?

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Member Comments on this Slideshow

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7/7/2010 6:44:46 AM

JSHEIL1's SparkPage
All A's and a C. Nothing sounds better to me than having completed a monster run.


7/7/2010 2:56:04 AM

GERWYN's SparkPage
2 Cs and 3 As to me.
When I ran cross country in high school and college I was the pacer. I could be counted on to be plodding along and actually people appreciated that. Usually it was because mid-race they would see me in front of them and realize they were going too slow!


7/7/2010 1:53:06 AM

TEDCABEL's SparkPage
Hmmm... 2-A's, 2-C's and a B... I would say I'm mostly A, always have been. Haven't been running lately though, think I either hyper-extended or maybe even tore a ligament around the left ankle area a couple of weeks ago playing racquetball (get too darned competitive!), and haven't been able to put my miles in since... going to the doc's this week...


7/6/2010 10:34:29 PM

RACING4ME's SparkPage
2-A's, 1b, 2-C's...hmmm, what does that make me? TeriJolene, where do you live? My parents live in Comox, and my in-laws live in Courtenay.


7/6/2010 9:55:44 PM

AIRBO1's SparkPage
I was 1 B and the rest A's. This is true right now. I am still building my endurance. I am training for a 4 miler in September. I think I will do some of the interval training though. Maybe that will build up my endurance as well. :)


7/6/2010 6:32:15 PM

KARENK63's SparkPage
Interesting. I was all As with one C, but running is my CROSStraining, not my main exercise. I usually only run once a week, to maintain the callouses and stay in touch with my "pace," but that gives me options on vacation when cycling isn't available.

I'm also very happy with my running. One of the biggest mistakes fitness proponents can make is to assume that everyone can run fast or faster. Some people really can't, especially the slow-twitch muscle types or those carrying around a lot of extra weight.

Getting out there and running your whole route and _finishing_ is an accomplishment every time.

Look at it this way: running 1 fast mile each time you run and doing no other exercise... is not worth much in overall fitness or benefit. Running 3-4 miles more slowly... that's a complete workout.


7/6/2010 6:23:43 PM

Great article! I was about half and half with A's and C's. I am going to do a running clinic next january with the Comox Valley Roadrunners, if they have it again, so I am excited about that!!


7/6/2010 5:36:00 PM

All C's and one A. Pretty accurate on both the description of Cs and the need to learn from Bs!


7/6/2010 5:10:41 PM

3A 2C

Problem is that I am recovering from 2 broken ankles and arthritis in one knee. Not really supposed to run ;-( Swimming has to be my thing for the moment, any ideas on the running front welcome

TIA Soooosaan


7/6/2010 4:52:16 PM

TIGLI22's SparkPage
I am 2 A's, 2 B's and a C - I'm all over the place! I had a hard time picking which song best describes my running style, because all three of those songs are on my playlist!!!


7/6/2010 4:34:43 PM

BBOWDEN1's SparkPage
i am 3 C's and 2 A's. Its all a slow go for me.


7/6/2010 3:30:45 PM

FRANCO1230's SparkPage
All A's, one B...I love the feel of the long, steady run that you feel like you could just go, and go, and go......


7/6/2010 2:55:07 PM

I'm an A, for sure. I find it easier to do interval / speed training when I have easily marked off distances (like in the winter, when I do more of my running inside on a short track at the local YMCA or use the cardio machines). And I can see how running with a buddy could help, but I really like the solitude of running by myself.


7/6/2010 1:55:26 PM

I recently started running again. I had to stop because of an accident. It feels good to be back. Right now, I am a C. However, at the gym this morning I was running beside someone younger than me, and I had to beat them and run longer than they did. That wimp! LOL


7/6/2010 1:16:41 PM

BLB515's SparkPage
Asthma keeps me a "C", but I'd like to be an "A".

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