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Running Quotes

More Running Quotes

Marathon Running Quotes

Cross Country Running Quotes

Blink and you miss a sprint. The 10,000 meters is lap after lap of waiting. Theatrically, the mile is just the right length - beginning, middle, end: a story unfolding. ~Sebastian Coe


There are as many reasons for running as there are days in the year, years in my life. But mostly I run because I am an animal and a child, an artist and a saint. So, too, are you. Find your own play, your own self-renewing compulsion, and you will become the person you are meant to be. ~George Sheehan


If God invented marathons to keep people from doing anything more stupid, the triathlon must have taken Him completely by surprise. ~P.Z. Pearce


Everyone who has run knows that its most important value is in removing tension and allowing a release from whatever other cares the day may bring. ~Jimmy Carter


The difference between a jogger and a runner is an entry blank. ~George Sheehan


There is an itch in runners. ~Arnold Hano


I believe that the Good Lord gave us a finite number of heartbeats and I'm damned if I'm going to use up mine running up and down a street. ~Neil Armstrong on jogging, in an interview with Walter Cronkite


I don't think jogging is healthy, especially morning jogging. If morning joggers knew how tempting they looked to morning motorists, they would stay home and do sit-ups. ~Rita Rudner


Runners just do it - they run for the finish line even if someone else has reached it first. ~Author Unknown.


"It's elevating and humbling at the same time. Running along a beach at sunrise with no other footprints in the sand, you realize the vastness of creation, your own insignificant space in the plan, how tiny you really are, your own creatureliness and how much you owe to the supreme body, the God that brought all this beauty and harmony into being."
- Sister Marion Irvine, 2:51 PR and 1984 U.S. Olympic Marathon Trials qualifier


"If the furnace is hot enough, it will burn anything." - John Parker, Once a Runner


"Believe in yourself, know yourself, deny yourself, and be humble."
- John Treacy's four principles of training prior to Los Angeles 84


"The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare."
- Juma Ikangaa, Tanzania


"Good things come slow - especially in distance running."
-Bill Dellinger, Oregon coach


"Running is a big question mark that's there each and every day. It asks you, 'Are you going to be a wimp or are you going to be strong today?'"
- Peter Maher, Irish-Canadian Olympian and sub-2:12 marathoner


"Fear is a great motivator."
- John Treacy, 1984 Olympic silver medalist


"I prefer to remain in blissful ignorance of the opposition. That way I'm not frightened by anyone's reputation."
- Ian Thompson, who ran a 2:09:12 marathon at the 1974 Commonwealth Games


"The thing that makes [Bob] Kennedy so good is that he doesn't have a fear of losing. He was willing to go to Europe and get hammered."
- Frank Shorter


"It's at the borders of pain and suffering that the men are separated from the boys."
- Emil Zatopek


"No pain, no gain."
- Athletic proverb


"Top results are reached only through pain. But eventually you like this pain. You'll find the more difficulties you have on the way, the more you will enjoy your success."
- Juha "the Curel Vaatainen


"Out of the silver heat mirage he ran. The sky burned, and under him the paving was a black mirror reflecting sun-fire. Sweat sprayed his skin with each foot strike so that he ran in a hot mist of his own creation. With each slap on the softened asphalt, his soles absorbed heat that rose through his arches and ankles and the stems of his shins. It was a carnival of pain, but he loved each stride because running distilled him to his essence and the heat hastened this distillation."
- James Tabor, from "The Runner," a short story


"Every morning in Africa, a gazelle wakes up. It knows it must outrun the fastest lion or it will be killed. Every morning in Africa, a lion wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest gazelle, or it will starve. It doesn't matter whether you're a lion or gazelle - when the sun comes up, you'd better be running."
- Inspirational sign on a runner's office wall


"Dream barriers look very high until someone climbs them. They are not barriers anymore."
- Lasse Viren


"Now if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired. When you were younger the mind could make you dance all night, and the body was never tired...You've always got to make the mind take over and keep going."
- George S. Patton, U.S. Army General and 1912 Olympian


"Mind is everything: muscle - pieces of rubber. All that I am, I am because of my mind."
- Paavo Nurmi


"Run hard, be strong, think big!"
- Percy Cerutty


"A lot of people run a race to see who's the fastest. I run to see who has the most guts."
- Steve Prefontaine


"Once you're beat mentally, you might was well not even go to the starting line."
-Todd Williams


"Bob does well in big races because he doesn't stand at the starting line and establish a pecking order. He doesn't look around and say: 'Oh, sp-and-so is here...' His great gift is his ability to focus completely on himself and his own race, and then let the place or the time take care of itself."
- Coach Vince Lananna on Bob Kempainen

"The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong. You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy...It is not age; it is not diet. It is the will to succeed."
- Jacqueline Gareau, 1980 Boston Marathon champ

"[Scientific testing] can't determine how the mind will tolerate pain in a race. Sometimes, I say, "Today I can die.'"
- Gelindo Bordin

"If I faltered, there would be no arms to hold me and the world would be a cold and forbidding place."
-Sir Roger Bannister

"Sport is not about being wrapped up in cotton wool. Sport as about adapting to the unexpected and being able to modify plans at the last minute. Sport, like all life, is about taking risks."
- Sir Roger Bannister


"There are people who have no bodies, only heads. And many athletes have no heads, only bodies. A champion is a man who has trained his body and his mind, who has learned to conquer pain for his own purposes. A great athlete is at peace with himself and at peace with the world; he has fulfilled himself. He envies nobody. Wars are caused by people who have not fulfilled themselves."
- Coach Sam Dee The Olympian

I decided to go for a little run - . - Forrest Gump


"You have to wonder at times what you're doing out there. Over the years, I've given myself a
thousand reasons to keep running, but it always comes back to where it started. It comes down to
self-satisfaction and a sense of achievement. - - Steve Prefontaine


“Some people create with words, or with music, or with a brush and paints. I like to make something
beautiful when I run. I like to make people stop and say, “I’ve never seen anyone run like that before.”
It’s more than a race--it’s a style. It’s doing something better than anyone else. It’s being creative.”
-Steve Prefontaine

"A lot of people run a race to see who's the fastest. I run to see who has the most guts." -
-Steve Prefontaine


I don't just go out there and run. I like to give people watching something exciting."
- -Steve Prefontaine


"Having a true faith is the most difficult thing in the world. Many will try to take it from you."
- -Steve Prefontaine


Long distance running is 90% mental and the other half is physical.
- Rich Davis


Me thinks that the moment my legs begin to move, my thoughts begin to flow.
- Henry David Thoreau


In that he didn't die at the finish line, he could have run faster"
- Tim Noakes


"Running is real. It’s all joy and woe, hard as diamond. It makes you weary beyond comprehension, but it also makes you free."

I always loved running... it was something you could do by yourself, and under your own power. You could go in any direction, fast or slow as you wanted, fighting the wind if you felt like it, seeking out new sights just on the strength of your feet and the courage of your lungs.
- Jesse Owens


"Enjoy your pain, you've earned it"


Believe in yourself, know yourself, deny yourself, and be humble."
- John Treacy's four principles of training prior to Los Angeles 84


"The will to win means nothing without the will to prepare."
- Juma Ikangaa, Tanzania


"Good things come slow - especially in distance running."
- Bill Dellinger, Oregon coach


Now if you are going to win any battle you have to do one thing. You have to make the mind run the body. Never let the body tell the mind what to do. The body will always give up. It is always tired morning, noon, and night. But the body is never tired if the mind is not tired. When you were younger the mind could make you dance all night, and the body was never tired...You've always got to make the mind take over and keep going."
- George S. Patton, U.S. Army General and 1912 Olympian


The body does not want you to do this. As you run, it tells you to stop but the mind must be strong.
You always go too far for your body. You must handle the pain with strategy...It is not age; it is not diet.
It is the will to succeed."
- - Jacqueline Gareau, 1980 Boston Marathon champ



"There are people who have no bodies, only heads. And many athletes have no heads, only bodies.
A champion is a man who has trained his body and his mind, who has learned to conquer pain for his own
purposes. A great athlete is at peace with himself and at peace with the world; he has fulfilled himself.
He envies nobody. Wars are caused by people who have not fulfilled themselves."
- - Coach Sam Dee The Olympian


It's at the borders of pain and suffering that the men are separated from the boys."
- - Emil Zatopek


"Top results are reached only through pain. But eventually you like this pain. You'll find the more
difficulties you have on the way, the more you will enjoy your success."
- - Juha "the Curel Vaatainen


God determines how fast you're going to run; I can help only with the mechanics."
- - Bill Bowerman


"If a man coaches himself, then he has only himself to blame when he is beaten."
- - Sir Roger Bannister


Ill train like a madman, un loco. Well, not like a madman, perhaps, but as if it were my last race."
- - Rudolfo Gomez, prior to the Los Angeles Olympic Games


"The long run is what puts the tiger in the cat."
- - Bill Squires


"We are different, in essence, from other men. If you want to win something, run 100 meters.
If you want to experience something, run a marathon."
- Emil Zatopek


"Some running is good, more is better, and too much is just enough"
"The only way to define your limits is to go beyond them"

"Remember the second most important thing to choosing the right shoe,
is choosing the left one"

"If I am still standing at the end of the race, hit me with a Board and knock me down, because that
means I didn't run hard enough" -
-Steve Jones


"Run so hard you come in with bloody feet and missing toenails"
- -Rob Decestella


"Man imposes his own limitations, don't set any" - -Anthony Bailey


"Human beings are made up of flesh and blood, and a miracle fiber called courage" - - George Patton


"The will to run is not as nearly as important as the will to prepare"

Obstacles are what you see when you take your eyes off the goal. - - Luis Escobar


- "Sweat cleanses from the inside. It comes from places a shower will never reach."
- George Sheehan


Endurance is patience concentrated. - Carlyle


You don’t run against a bloody stop watch, do you hear? A runner runs against himself, against
the best that's in him. Not against a dead thing of wheels and pulleys. That's the way to be great,
running against yourself. Against all the rotten mess in the world. Against God,
if you’re good enough. - ~Bill Persons


It is better to wear out one's shoes than one's sheets. - Genoese Proverb


Fitness is a stage you pass through on the way to becoming a racer.
- Dr. George Sheehan


The only competition of a wise man is with himself.
- Washington Allston


"Some people run to get in shape......we get in shape to run!"

Mind is everything: muscle, pieces of rubber. - - Paavo Nurmi


"I may not be fast, but I sure ain't last."


You can never run a hill too hard, you will collapse before hurting it.
- -Adam Born


"Every man dies, but not every man really lives." - - William Wallace


"There is no satisfaction without a struggle first." - -Marty Liquori


"Don't fear moving slowly forward...fear standing still." - - Kathleen Harris


Most sports require only one ball.

"It's very hard in the beginning to understand that the whole idea is not to beat the other runners.
Eventually you learn that the competition is against the little voice inside you that wants you to quit."
- - George Sheehan


"If you run hard, there's the pain -- and you've got to work your way through the pain....
You know, lately it seems all you hear is 'Don't overdo it' and 'Don't push yourself.' Well, I think that's
a lot of bull. If you push the human body, it will respond."
- Bob Clarke, NHL Hall of Famer


"Somebody may beat me, but they are going to have to bleed to do it."

"my sport is your sports punishment"

Just because your muscles start to protest doesn't mean you have to listen

There will be days when I don't know if I can run a marathon.
There will be a lifetime knowing that I have."

It got me through many tough workouts before my first.

Winners never quit and quitters never win.
If winning isn't everything, why do they keep score?
- -Vince Lombardi


Do or do not. There is no try. - -Yoda


"Mental toughness is only the confidence to go on when you can't move."

"God has a purpose for me and that is to serve Him in China, but God also made me to run fast and
when I run, I feel His pleasure" - -Eric Liddel in "Chariots of Fire"


I run because I can. When I get tired, I remember those who can't run, what they'd give to have
this simple gift I take for granted, and I run harder for them. I know they would do the same for me.

Run like you're avoiding the cooties.

Running is my medication when I'm down and my celebration when I'm up.

"I would rather exercise than read a newspaper." - - Kim Alexis


"Find the level of intolerance you can tolerate and stay there." - David Horton


"The luxurious ache of tired but not weary limbs." - Michael Fairless


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where
the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the
arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, and comes
short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually
strive to do the deeds; who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a
worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst,
if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid
souls who know neither victory nor defeat."
- Theodore Roosevelt


"Someone may beat me, but they are going to have to bleed to do it."

"I'm going to work it out so it's a gut's race, because if I do, then I'm the only one who can win it."

"Run the first mile with your legs, the second mile with your mind, and the
third mile with your heart."


"Pain is weakness leaving your body" - Marine Corps


"If it were any easier, they might call it football..."


"Pain is nothing compared to what it feels like to quit."


HEART is the difference between those who ATTEMPT and those who ACHIEVE."


"You gain strength, confidence and courage by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face."
- ELEANOR ROOSEVELT


Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go


It takes a little more persistence to get up and go the distance.


When you come to a fork in the road, take it. You never know when you are going to get hungry.
- Yogi Bear


When you come to a fork in the road, take it. - Yogi Berra


"Pain is temporary; finishing is forever."


"I've never been beaten by the guy behind me."


"It's not 13.1 miles ... it’s seven water stops."


We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.
- Aristotle


"If you don't feel like you're going to throw up you're not running fast enough. "

Losers look what they are going through. Winners look where they are going to.

What counts in battle is what you do once the pain sets in.

Success is not the result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.

Running is the greatest metaphor for life, because you get out of it what you put into it.

Runners’ creed: Speed (speedwork) on Monday, LSD (long, steady distance) on Saturday.

Man, lose no time, get up and take the course again, for he that rises again quickly and
continues the race is as if never fallen.

"Last is just the slowest winner." - C. Hunter Boyd


Don't work towards freedom; let the work be the freedom." - Dogen Roshi


"Anybody running beats anybody walking, and anybody walking beats anybody sitting."
- Tom Bunk


"The Quitter"
When you're lost on the trail with the speed of a snail And defeat looks you straight in the eye
and you're needing to sit, your whole being says quit You're certain it's your time to die. But the code
of the trail is "move forward don't fail" Though your knees and ego are scarred. All the swelling and
pain is just part of the game In the long run it's quitting that's hard! "I'm sick of the pain!" Well, now,
that's a shame But you're strong, you're healthy, and bright. So you've had a bad stretch and you're
ready to retch, Shoulders back, move forward, and fight. It's the plugging away that will win you the day,
Now don't be a loser my friend! So the goal isn't near, why advance to the rear. All struggles eventually end.

It's simple to cry that you’re finished; and die. It's easy to whimper and whine. Move forward and fight, though there's no help in sight You'll soon cross the lost finish line. You'll come out of the black, with the
wind at your back, As the clouds start to part; there's the sun. Then you'll know in your heart, as you did
at the start. You're not a quitter. You've Won!! - Gene Thibeault


"Find your limits and exceed them." - Lynn Strickland


"Your body will argue that there is no justifiable reason to continue. Your only recourse is to call on
your spirit, which fortunately functions independently of logic." - Tim Noakes


"Beware of the chair!"

"The runner need not break four minutes in the mile or four hours in the marathon. It is only necessary that
he runs and runs and sometimes suffers. Then one day he will wake up and discover that somewhere along
the the way he has begun to see the order and law and love and truth that makes men free." - George Sheehan


"There are victories of the soul and spirit. Sometimes, even if you lose, you win."
- Elie Wiesel


"To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield." - Alfred Lord Tennyson


"If you start to feel good during an Ultra, don't worry - you'll get over it." - Gene Thibeault


"It's the quitting that really is hard." - - Gene Thibeault


"Above all, train hard, eat light, and avoid TV and people with negative attitudes."
- Scott Tinley


"Heaven is under our feet as well as over our heads."
- David Thoreau


"Finish with a smile on your face and a bounce in your step."
- Joe Trask


"It hurts up to a point and then it doesn't get any worse."
- Ann Trason


"Some think guts is sprinting at the end of a race. But guts is what got you there to begin with.
Guts start back in the hills with 6 miles to go and you're thinking of how you can get out of this race without anyone noticing. Guts begin when you still have forty minutes of torture left and you're already hurting more than you ever remember."
- George Sheehan


"Let him that would move the world first move himself"
- Socrates


"I have met my hero, and he is me."
- George Sheehan


"Have you ever felt worse after a run?"
- - George Sheehan


"Success rests in having the courage and endurance, and above all,
the will to become the person you are. . . " - George Sheehan


"A dozen extra steps becomes a tremendous aggravation when you are pushing
your edge out hour after hour." - Shapiro


"I had as many doubts as anyone else. Standing on the starting line, we're all cowards."
- Alberto Salazar


"The will to do, the soul to dare." - Sir Walter Scott


"Sweetness and release can only taste the way they do after one deserves them."
- Shapiro


"The body is given out on loan - don't waste it and expect to use it tomorrow." - Shapiro


"You must do the thing you think you cannot do." - Eleanor Roosevelt


"The mind learns the body can go at least a bit farther even though it
feels increasingly uncomfortable." - - Pritikin


"Sometimes you should overcome the tiredness and speed up when you'd normally slow down.
Great source of strength and power." - Pritikin


"The harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly;
it is dearness only that gives everything its value. I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection." - Thomas Paine


"Once that distance had been passed in training, an important physical and psychological threshold had been crossed. It was no longer a question of *if* it could be done. Rather, it became a question of *how fast* it could be done."
- Mike Plant


"Self-conquest is the greatest of victories." - Plato


"There is another type of strength. It is being able to extend your energy for a very long distance."
- David LaPierre


"If one could run without getting tired I don't think one would often want to do anything else."
- C.S. Lewis


"Determine that the thing can and shall be done, and then we will find the way."
- Abraham Lincoln


"The endurance athlete is the ultimate realist." - Marty Liquori


"Fatigue makes cowards of us all" - Vince Lombardi


"If you can't fly, then run. If you can't run, then walk. If you can't walk, then crawl.
But whatever you do, keep moving." - Martin Luther King, Jr.


"The only way to be who you want to be is by being what you haven't yet been."
- Sally Edwards


"Great spirits often encounter violent opposition from mediocre minds." - Albert Einstein


"Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go."
- T.S. Eliot


"Do the thing and have the power" - Ralph Waldo Emerson


"To describe the agony of a marathon to someone who's never run it is like trying to explain color to
someone who was born blind." - Jerome Drayton


"Follow me--I know the way"
- Herman Cohen, as he led a large group astray at the Nugget 100 miler - 1994


"If you think you won't finish, you won't." - Dick Collins


"Champions are born with the right stuff, but still must suffer the stresses of training to
achieve full potential." - David Costill


"The purpose of training is to stress the body, so when you rest it will grow stronger and more
tolerant of the demands of distant running." - David Costill


"Speed and strength are of diminishing importance at greater and greater distances."
- David Costill


"The most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle. The essential thing is not to
have conquered but to have fought well." - Pierre de Courbertin


"The road to excess leads to the place of wisdom, for we can never know what is
enough until we have experienced too much." - William Blake


"You can't die from a stomach ache. The worst that can happen is that you'll throw up.
Then you can eat some more and start running again." - Jack Bristol


"A man's reach must exceed his grasp, or else what's a heaven for?" - Robert Browning
"Go fast enough to get there, but slow enough to see." - Jimmy Buffett


"Succeeding makes you forget the failures."
- Harry Cordellos, blind athlete (2:57 at Boston in 1975)


"Nothing ever fatigues me, except that which I dislike." - Jane Austen


"Runners can get through the weary and lonely hours only if they are at peace in themselves."
– - Ayers

"The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do." - Bagehot


"No doubt a brain and some shoes are essential for marathon success, although if it
comes down to a choice, pick the shoes. More people finish marathons with no brains
than with no shoes."
- Don Kardong


When you're afraid of failure you're more likely to do it." - Gordy Ainsleigh


"You can sleep when you die." - Roger Rehwald (seen on a T-shirt)


"As long as you keep making RFM (Relentless Forward Motion), you will finish."
- Stacey Page

"Find your limits and exceed them." - Lynn Strickland


"Your body will argue that there is no justifiable reason to continue. Your only recourse is to call
on your spirit, which fortunately functions independently of logic." - Tim Noakes


"Rewards are on a level with the effort, and the effort is extreme."

"Despite what seems like the extraordinary nature of these events, in the end, they
make you even more human. - Joel McNamara


"Decide before the race the conditions that will cause you to stop and drop out. You don't want to be out there saying, Well gee, my leg hurts, I'm a little dehydrated, I'm sleepy, I'm tired, and its cold and windy. And talk yourself into quitting. If you are making a decision based on how you feel at that moment, you will probably make the wrong decision."
- Dick Collins


"A man must love a thing very much if he not only practices it without any hope of fame and money,
but even practices it without any hope of doing it well." - G. K. Chesterton


"If you under-train, you may not finish, but if you over-train, you may not start."
- Tom DuBos


"My doctor told me that jogging could add years to my life. I think he was right. I feel ten years
older already."
- -Milton Berle


"You're better than you think you are and you can do more than you think you can!"
- Ken Chlouber


Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self- satisfaction in knowing you did
your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming." -
- John Wooden


- Success is peace of mind, which is a direct result of self- satisfaction in knowing you did your best
to become the best that you are capable of becoming." - John Wooden


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