Ways To Say Thank You To The Non-Runners Who Supported Your Running

Ways to say thank you

We runners can go a little nuts when training for a marathon. When we are in training mode, we can get a little self-absorbed. We tend to make everything revolve around us and what we need in order to succeed.

I have previously written about what non-runners should know about living with a runner who is training for a marathon.

Today, a variation: how runners can thank the non-runners in their lives who have supported them during training.

Ways To Say Thank You To The Non-Runners Who Support You

While training for a marathon, we are exhausted, both mentally and physically. Our time is taken up by the hours of running we need to put in to reach the finish line.

Knowing or unknowingly, we ask a lot of those who are close to us.

We expect them to pick up the slack around the house. We ask for rides to start lines at ungodly hours and ask them (or worse, expect them without ever asking) to do race sherpa duty and cheer us on come race day.

It is important we don’t take any of this for granted.

Ways to say thank you

Ways To Say Thank You

Actually Say Thank You

The simplest gestures often make the most impact. Unfortunately, the simplest gestures are also the easiest to overlook.

Take a moment to consider all the things your person is doing (or did) for you. Don’t let any of it go by unnoticed.

Tell them what it meant to you that they supported you.

Acknowledge it.

Actually say thank you.

Don’t Take Them For Granted

By all means, ask for help when you need it, but be aware of what you are asking of them – especially if it’s something you know they may not like.

If you need a ride to the race start line at 4:30 a.m., ask. But understand that you are asking a lot.

Don’t ask for stuff just because you know they will help you.

Don’t take them for granted.

Share Running With Them

If they show any interest in running, encourage them to start.

Support them, coach them, run a 5k with them. Or take your turn on the sidelines and support them while they run their first race.

But also know that not everyone takes to running. They may not like it. Or they may like it, but aren’t as dedicated to it as you are.

Support them wherever they are in their running journey, but understand that their journey likely won’t match yours.


Support them in whatever their passion is, in whatever way you can.

Next time they ask you to attend an event they care about or to support them in something, say yes.

Even if you don’t want to.

Even if it sounds boring.

Going to an art museum or doing the laundry and watching the kids so they can go to a pottery class may sound like a terrible evening to you, but there’s a good chance that spending a day by the side of road watching thousands of runners stream past on race day probably didn’t sound like a treat to them either.

You never know, you may actually like it.

And if not… well… you still did a good thing.

Give Them An IOU

Make sure any suggestions of ‘let me know how I can help you’ don’t get forgotten.

Give them an actual, physical, IOU for your help – no questions asked – when they need or want help.

And then act on it when they call it in.

Even if you don’t want to.

Give A Gift Or Send A Card

Get them a small gift or gift card, or send them a card (in real life or digitally).

It doesn’t need to be extravagant or expensive. A small token of appreciation can go a long way.

Pay It Forward

Support a cause they support.

Consider the charitable causes they believe in or support. Make a donation to a charity for that cause in their name, or volunteer with them to support the cause.

Or combine all of your interests and run a local fun run or virtual race that supports that cause in their honor.


How have you said thank you to those
who supported your marathon journey?


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