Voices to Listen to on Running and Race

Voices to Listen to on Running and Race

A few weeks ago, many of us ran 2.23 miles in honor of Ahmaud Arbery, a young man murdered at the hands of racists while on a run. Those runs for Maud mattered then; taking a step beyond awareness and into solidarity matters next. 

When I studied English literature and interdisciplinary humanities in undergraduate, my program pushed us to look beyond texts of the “dead white male” canon. We read Virginia Woolf, Oroonoko, Invisible Man, Edward Said, Persepolis, and similar texts. Why?

Voices from different perspectives matter. They enriched our worldview, foster understanding, and encourage solidarity. The more you are familiar with someone, the more of an ally you can become. You see someone else as a person when you know their story and learn to treat them as such, no matter how they differ from you. This concept applies to sport as much as literature or film. The more voices represented, the richer our sport of running is. Now more than ever is a time to listen to voices from different backgrounds and perspectives. 

Voices to Listen to on Running and Race

This is by no means a comprehensive list. It is simply a compilation of some voices on the topic of race, justice, and running that I have read. There is a lot I do not know and have not read; I simply hope this can provide some resources to foster solidarity and justice. 

I do apologize if I make any uninformed statements in this post. I do not fully understand and I am continually striving to be a more understanding and supportive ally. 

Podcasts and Articles:

Ginger Runner Live #310: “:Mirna Valerio – A Discussion of Race and Racism in Running

“Your Black Teammate” by Kamilah Journet for Tracksmith Journal

“11 Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Runners Speak Out About Running and Race” by Emilia Benton for Runner’s World

“Ahmaud Arbery and Whiteness in the Running Community” by Alison Desir for Outside

“We Ran for Ahmaud Arbery. But What’s Next?” by Erin Strout for Podium Runner

Keeping Track Podcast: “A Conversation around Race with Alison Desir” 

“The Work White Americans Need to Do” by Mario Fraioli for The Morning Shakeout (Fraioli is white, unlike the other resources; however, this is an important piece to read of why it matters to listen)

Instagram Accounts:

@diversewerun

@kamilahjournet

@themirnavator

@eatprayrundc

@natrunsfar 

@runwithnoregrets

@alexandriawill

@alisonmdesir

@alysiamontano

@bromka (Peter Bromka is a white male runner; however, he focuses on what we can do to battle racism, both broadly and in our sport)

Linking up with Runner’s Roundup linkup!

Who are you reading and following?

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5 Responses

  1. I watched a documentary on Mirna Valerio (I’ve also read her book). I find her to be truly inspiring–she pushes through her runs, letting insults and haters roll off her back. She inspired me to sign up for Ice Age. I watched her run that 50k and I thought that if she can do it, I can do it! Inspiration comes from interesting places, doesn’t it? We just have to open up our minds.

  2. Perspective is everything. When we no longer listen to other belief systems or experiences, we have lost such a huge part of our humanity. Thank you for sharing your thoughts.

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