Do Runners Hate Wearing Glasses?
6 out of 10 people in the developed world wear glasses or contact lenses. At least one of them is a runner.
What’s up with glasses? For some reason, society seems to think that glasses are fair game. Wear a pair and you’re going to be grilled like a homicide detective in hot pursuit of a murderer who thinks the perpetrator is you.
We wish this weren’t so, because what you wear perched on your face is nobody else’s business. Does this conundrum get even more annoying for runners who wear glasses? Sadly, the answer is yes.
But for those of you who are sick and tired of being grilled about their eyewear as it relates to your training and running activities, consider us your official resource for idiot-busting responses.
When you're asked an inane question, provide an inane answer. Now, put on those specs proudly armed with the following defense strategies.
Question: How the heck can you compete in a marathon wearing those glasses?
Your answer: Would you rather that I run into you as we take a particularly steep hill and make a serious dent in both your run time and your body? What do you take me for?
I make sure my fit is tight and that my glasses are snug so I can properly see the idiots I strive to overtake and leave in my dust. As a matter of fact, I’d sure love to run into you next time I compete…
Question: What if it snows or rains on the day you compete or train?
Your answer: It’s nice of you to be concerned about me, but since I’ve been wearing glasses since I was a kid, I’m perfectly capable of making sure they don’t get in my way.
After all, celebrities don’t worry about low-cut necklines becoming wardrobe malfunctions unless a peek is intentional. Notice the baseball cap on my head, or do you need glasses? I wear it when it rains so drops avoid my glasses. Got another question, silly fool?
Question: How come you don’t wear sunglasses when you run?
Your answer: The reason I don’t wear them is because I haven’t the time to keep switching off glasses when Singapore’s schizophrenic weather goes from bright to hazy in a matter of minutes when I must focus on my time and technique.
You may already know that I’m skilled at navigating a circuit adroitly because I’m accustomed to running in perpetually-changing weather. Now, about those sunglasses: I’m a designer frame girl, so can you send me a check so I can buy a pair?
Question: How come you don’t just wear contact lenses when you run?
Your answer: Sorry to be the one who breaks this news to you, but it’s obvious you are clueless when it comes to contact lenses. Nothing—and I mean nothing—is to be gained during a marathon by wearing them.
First, contact lenses make eyes more sensitive to sunlight and while I don’t know about you, it takes very little to distract me from my goal when I’m out to beat a personal best.
Further, one’s eyes can get irritated and red when wearing contact lenses for reasons other than sweat. You try competing when your eyes bother you.
Question: You must be one smart runner to wear glasses, right?
Your answer: If I were smart, I’d turn around and walk away from you, but I feel the need to set the record straight: glasses have nothing to do with IQ and everything to do with sight impairment.
Sadly, credible media sources have perpetuated this silly myth. For example, the Wall Street Journal published the article “How to Look Smarter,” citing a 2011 Swiss Journal of Psychology study that proved wearing glasses makes a wearer look more intelligent for absolutely no other reason. Oh, and big black glasses can make one look like a genius.
Question: How come you don’t get Lasik surgery?
Your answer: Sounds good to me. Will you pay for it and help me regain my footing after having to quit my conditioning programme for a couple of weeks so I can heal up from my Lasik surgery?
After all, I couldn’t afford to risk my newly-operated-upon eyes by sweating and subjecting them to infection, so maybe you could also help me out by bringing me some take-away food while I'm recovering. Thanks in advance!
Question: Are you telling me that it never bothers you to run wearing glasses?
Your answer: That’s exactly what I’m telling you because I’m savvy and smart (I wear glasses after all) so if I anticipate a problem, I deal with it before I put on my running shoes in advance of a training run or a race.
For example, if the weather is muggy or cold, I apply a coating of concentrated soap to my glasses using a cloth, let it dry and buff my lenses until they’re nearly clean, just as I would a car windshield.
Question: Has anyone told you that your glasses make you look like someone famous?
Your answer: Well, clearly, I’m not that person, because given their celebrity, they probably wouldn’t be caught dead wearing my non-designer running outfit and they would probably own more expensive running shoes.
Of course, if you insist that this celebrity is my doppelganger, maybe you could drop her a note and inform her that you met me, and that I’m eager to meet the twin from whom I was separated at birth.
Question: So, are you blind without those glasses?
Your answer: Did the fact that I just ran into you and dumped coffee all over what appear to be new running shoes lead you to that conclusion?
Dear spec-wearing readers: Can you astound us with the dumbest remark anyone has made to you about wearing glasses when you run? We would love to add your experience to our list.
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