Brian Danza, president of D.C. Road Runners, divides runners into two groups: the competitive subset, who run for time, and the participatory or recreational group, or “people who do it to check a box.” Speaking on behalf of his running club, he said, “we firmly promote the sport of running in a competitive manner.”
Running a marathon just for the sake of completing one, said Danza, isn’t worth the effort. Danza cites “the advent of social media and bragging” as fueling marathons’ increased popularity. “The way to one-up each other — ‘I’m thinner than you, I’m better than you in various ways, I also checked this box’ — has really perpetuated the growth of the sport.”Lauren has an attitude about runners, inclusion and participation that is diametrically opposed to that expressed on behalf of the club by Mr. Danza. I am delighted with the new, promising direction taken by my former running club.