March 13, 2005

Runner's Magazine Has Race Problem: The lack of coverage of non-white athletes prompts a boycott call: "From road racing to track, some of the most important and highest achieving athletes are Asian, Latino, Afro-Caribbean and African, yet their stories and images are nearly non-existent in Runner's World magazine." (Via mathowie)

posted by rcade to other at 06:17 PM - 26 comments

Wow. That seems pretty heinous. Although their argument that they're pitching the magazine to white American dabblers is not without merit, they do claim to have a broader scope than that, which makes the omission of every top-caliber runner with a tan or a funny name frankly kind of heinous. If I was a reader of running magazines, I'd follow that boycott. And Running Times has a great opportunity to fill that gap here.

posted by chicobangs at 08:45 PM on March 13

If true, it sounds like that great business strategy "we need to sell shoes to our key demographic" to me. That the strategy further asumes that we're all a bunch of racists (well, shopping racists anyway) is what is equally insulting. However, this is for cetain one side of the arguement. I've never read a Runner's World.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:53 PM on March 13

Also, Toyota doesn't seem like a white-supremacist company.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:55 PM on March 13

I read this earlier, and was a little shocked at matt's linking of the article. It's such a kneejerk reaction. Sure, 7 out of 10 people are going to say, "hey, he's right, no black people...boycott!" without thinking or ever reading the magazine, as if it's really that simple, but I expected more out of matt. Number one, runner's world isn't a celebration of the best runners in the sport. This is not sports illustrated where the best football/basketball/baseball team is going to get the most coverage. It's a magazine the running amateur/hobbyist. How to run your best 5k, how to stay away from injury, etc. If a champion black runner is turned down to write an article on how to improve your endurance, there's a problem. Secondly, I've run over 20 races, marathons, 10ks, 5ks, and you'll be lucky to find 5 black runners in any field. Go to a running store and see how many black customers there are. Runner's world knows their audience. They are overwhelmingly white and, for the most part, couldn't care less about who won the detroit marathon. But we don't care what the audience wants. We only care about being politically correct. So we'll boycott a magazine we've never read. Of course, don't stop there. Camping magazines, Bike magazine, enter name here show almost all white people on the front. I've biked several 5 day trips and have yet to see a black person participate, but dammit there's no black person on bike magazine so let's boycott them too. I grew up reading heavy metal magazines. Other than living color, never saw a black person on the cover. And then lets move on to rap magazines. I'm getting pretty sick of only seeing eminem on the cover. There's got to be more white rappers than that, and I promise you more white people read rap magazines than black people read running magazines. In the end, I wouldn't be surprised if all of this ends up with a black runner on the cover. Not because of the boycott, those who would boycott don't read it, but because just the noise of racism will cause a token peace offering. But it's comical. When the pc police finds something to complain about like this it takes time and energy away from true problems. People talking about a boycott for a magazine they've never read, which makes the omission of every top-caliber runner with a tan or a funny name frankly kind of heinous.

Runners world covers marathons with all the winners, though that's not the magazine purpose, the boycott is about the cover which is rarely a champion at all but some white no name model. But that's the blogging world we live in today. One random person pulls something out of his ass, one respected blogger links to it, and now we're discussing it on sportsfilter. If it were not so sad it'd be funny.

posted by justgary at 03:44 AM on March 14

I've run over 20 races, marathons, 10ks, 5ks, and you'll be lucky to find 5 black runners in any field. I appreciate your larger point, but arguing from the specific to the general won't prove anything.

posted by yerfatma at 06:21 AM on March 14

Runner's world knows their audience. They are overwhelmingly white and, for the most part, couldn't care less about who won the detroit marathon. But we don't care what the audience wants. We only care about being politically correct. So we'll boycott a magazine we've never read. Actually, as to that, it sounds like Runner's World has a somewhat mixed message about who they represent. The article quotes from Runner's World's customer service website customer service page: "We realize that many of our covers and photos do not represent the average, everyday runner [emphasis mine]. However, as a runner, you know what it means to be a competitor. Runner's World is also a competitor in a national-magazine marketplace where every other magazine uses models who are younger, more gorgeous, and more well-proportioned than anyone deserves to be. And, as a competitor, we have little choice but to try to match these other magazines. That's what helps us stay in business so we can bring Runner's World to readers like you every month.” So it sounds like Runner's World feels like their covers don't represent their audience either, no? They're not selling to people of color, they're not selling to "younger, more gorgeous, and...well-proportioned" white people...who are they selling to, stringy-looking, splotchy-skinned, out-of-shape white people?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 07:23 AM on March 14

But that's the blogging world we live in today. One random person pulls something out of his ass, one respected blogger links to it, and now we're discussing it on sportsfilter. If it were not so sad it'd be funny. I think that's the beauty of weblogging, myself. His charge doesn't appear to be false or malicious, so what's the harm in giving it a fair hearing, even if you think he's dead wrong? The ability of any random person to get a worldwide forum at little to no cost is one of the things I like most about the Web. As for the lack of non-white runners in the sport, perhaps there'd be more if publications like Runner's World didn't reinforce the idea that the sport was "overwhelmingly white." If the magazine covers marathon winners, as you say that it does, surely some of them should be featured on the cover and in articles. There don't seem to be a lot of black recreational golfers, but Tiger Woods is on the cover of golf magazines often.

posted by rcade at 08:53 AM on March 14

I am a runner, biker, swimmer, triathlete, 21 yrs ago I did my first triathlon. To the best of my knowledge there's never been a black person on the cover of either of triathlons leading mags. However, in all this time I've seen only a couple of African Americans participating in these events. The fact that they aren't represented well in runner's world doesn't surprize me nor should it surprize any of us. The target audience is middle of the pack recreational runners. If there were a magazine called Ebony Runner's would it get this much attention? I think not.

posted by km2262 at 10:49 AM on March 14

If part of Runner's World's purpose is to inspire recreational runners, wouldn't it be inspirational to show that the sport is racially inclusive? If minorities are underrepresented in the sport, that's a marketing opportunity for the publication. I don't understand why the lack of non-white participants, if true, has to be represented in the magazine. How many readers would care if more diversity was reflected in the magazine?

posted by rcade at 11:02 AM on March 14

Been a runner for quite some time, a couple of marathons, many triathlons. Don't boycott Runner's World because they shun minorities, boycott them because their quality of writing and article selection sucks. It's well known in the running/triathlon community that Runner's World is aimed at the 'just-starting' to 'intermediate' level runners, that's why they keep running the same crappy '5 Steps to a good 5K' article over and over and over and over. From my experience running clubs are primarily white, while I tend to see a lot more diversity at races. I think their statement that 'our covers and photos do not represent the average, everyday runner' means more that they're not publishing photos of 43 year old men and women that are 10-20 lbs overweight, which if you are in the running community, that is the reality of the average runner. Runner's World does not really cover elite-level races, beyond a quick race summary. If you're looking for coverage of international level racing, then look at the USATF, IAAF, or Cool Running. Runner's World does not tend to cover these events. My brother is an elite level runner, and I know I will probably never see his name in Runner's World, and he's white. So in conclusion, boycott Runner's World because they suck, not because they're racist.

posted by patrickje at 11:53 AM on March 14

The people on Runner's World covers are supposed to be the fit trim person you will be once you've gotten a year subscription and some $100 running shoes. Calling Runner's World out for this would be like asking why People Magazine never has any really good Broadway actors on the cover... Renee Zellwiger?? She can barely act! I thought Mzaria Zambuki's one woman show "My life as a tiny smudge" was genius... She should be on the cover... If there's a market out there RW isn't serving, then the Magazine Editor who wrote this post should be licking his chops, and planning to corner that market with Urban Runner or something, not complaining on his Blog'o Self Importance. Some complain that it's dark, I look for candles.

posted by LostInDaJungle at 02:48 PM on March 14

I appreciate your larger point, but arguing from the specific to the general won't prove anything. Specific to general, general to specific, doesn't matter. I'm still waiting to hear what the argument is for the boycott. If "there's no black people on the cover" is all you've got, a debate is useless anyway. who are they selling to, stringy-looking, splotchy-skinned, out-of-shape white people? I did not understand the inclusion of the service page in the original link, nor here. The statement has nothing to do with race, nor proves any racism. I think that's the beauty of weblogging, myself. His charge doesn't appear to be false or malicious, so what's the harm in giving it a fair hearing, even if you think he's dead wrong? I think it 'can' be beautiful, and I'm all for it. Doesn't mean it isn't sometimes a load of crap. The guy writes his post, matt links it with a shrug. Our own oliver willis links it with the casual sentence "Man, sure looks like it." We're accusing a company of racism and oliver, another highly read blog, puts all of 5 words down to agree with it. In the comments he writes: don't know if Runner's World is racist, but you would think a magazine about running would have someone non-white on their cover on occasion. My high school track team was one of the best in Florida, and almost everyone on the team was black. This isn't a track magazine, it's a distance running magazine. Oliver should go to his local 5K and see how many non white runners there are. In this instance it would be like ESPN the Magazine only ever showing black atheletes, which would be preposterous. The only thing perposterous is that comparison. The magazines couldn't be more different. But Oliver doesn't know that, he's never read the magazine. So we have two (matt's also) highly read blogs that I know of that throw off the cuff remarks about a company being racist. Neither one I'm guessing has ever read the magazine. What's beautiful about that? Nothing. But if these two intelligent people are going to jump on a witchhunt, watch out for the less informed. As for the lack of non-white runners in the sport, perhaps there'd be more if publications like Runner's World didn't reinforce the idea that the sport was "overwhelmingly white." Because it's a magazine rcade. People are not paying to receive it to push social issues. I understand what you're saying, but blaming the fact that few black people run 5ks on the magazine, and giving them the job of correcting it, is, well, silly (not to mention thats a different argument that has nothing to do with racism.) And as I said before, where does it stop? Why runner's world? Put a few more white guys on the cover of nba today? What about backpacker magazine? I have a jeep and read jeep magazine. I hardly ever see a black person on the trails. Maybe if we get one on the magazine that will change. The list could go on forever. Bottom line, throwing around a racist claim as easily as these people are doing is not beatiful. No matter the truth, some people are now going to believe the claim. Thankfully, I've been surprised at how many people here and other sites are sticking up for runner's world.

posted by justgary at 03:36 PM on March 14

And as I said before, where does it stop? I hope it doesn't. If a magazine is putting an endless procession of white people on its cover because that sells better, I don't have a problem with a consumer backlash from people who expect better. People may be too hasty to call the publication "racist" on the basis of one disgruntled reader's call for a boycott. But I haven't seen anyone offer evidence that the magazine is more inclusive, and its customer-service page suggests the publication is at least familiar with the controversy.

posted by rcade at 05:21 PM on March 14

We appreciate that some people don't think racism exists on any level unless someone's hanging from a tree. The same goes for a person who doesn't have enough interest to ask someone why Ebony or BET exists. What can you say? I ran this issue by one of my good friends, an RW subscriber who has become a de-facto distance coach within the last three to five years, who runs a race once a month or so himself, and who also happens to be black. His take: "I've noticed for a very long time that few if any blacks are on the R.W. cover. The last one I can remember was Regina Jacobs at least two years ago. But the folks at R.W are smart and have done their marketing research, and, therefore, know their audience... Still, do I like not seeing blacks on the cover, at least once or twice a year? Of course not. I think it's demeaning and inconsiderate." In general, I wouldn't get totally up in RW's ass without seeing if there was a time when they did regularly run covers with world-class runners, and then gradually stopped, coinciding with the disappearance of American (read: white) distance running in the world-class scene. Without doing real research, we don't really know. But I wonder what's so odious about asking the question? Running is dominated by non-white RUNNERS. They do not exist on RW's covers, thus making someone wonder what's up with RW. There might be ready explanations, some of them valid, but that doesn't mean that they're unnecessary. And no, the "list" does not go on forever. Notice that the blogger didn't call out Bicycling magazine, or Outside magazine, and I wouldn't expect it. Probably because there are aren't a ton of dark or tan people dominating those sports. (Voi-fucking-la!) And in most cases, sport recreation magazines will have their best examples on their covers, occasionally. Pro cyclists wouldn't appear on Bicycling covers as often as VeloNews, but they do appear. So it does make you wonder why RW is so skittish about giving the exposure to the sport's best participants, every once in a while. Besides, if you think there's so few of us, why worry about our "boycott"?

posted by jackhererra at 05:26 PM on March 14

But I wonder what's so odious about asking the question? What he said.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 06:31 PM on March 14

Runner's World, which I have read a great deal of, is to the sport of running as "Inside Stuff" is to the NBA. Not to be taken very seriously from a journalistic standpoint. The problem may be solved if the title of the mag were to be changed. "Runner's World" presupposes an encompassment of the sport which does not in fact exist. Maybe "Suburbia Running Monthly" ? "Jogging for Dummies"? If they're going to keep "Runner's World," they should start representing the world.

posted by mayerkyl at 09:28 AM on March 15

If a magazine is putting an endless procession of white people on its cover because that sells better, I don't have a problem with a consumer backlash from people who expect better. Then why pick on runner's world? Why not 'bike'? And what about rap magazines? Wouldn't the same go for them? In fact, how many magazines don't take into consideration their audience when it comes to the cover models? Hey, i agree it would be nice if none of that existed, but I don't live in a dream world. No one has given a good reason why runners world has been singled out. A boycott against runner's world does nothing, solves no problem. and its customer-service page suggests the publication is at least familiar with the controversy. No it doesn't rcade. It wasn't there when the original poster made the comments, and it's not there now. What the customer service page is referring to is the models being beatiful and in great shape. That doesn't represent the person eating chips on the couch about to enter his first 5k. But a front photo of that guy won't sell magazines. The service page has nothing to do with race. This is a case of starting with a premise and then fitting the page to suit your point. But I wonder what's so odious about asking the question? Nothing. Now please point me to the question. The original post was calling for a boycott, no question. Matt's linked to it without question. Oliver linked to it without question. Rcade's link here says 'runners magazine has a race problem', not 'does' it have a race problem. So questions, discussion, fine, if only they really existed. But they don't, so your point is moot. Probably because there are aren't a ton of dark or tan people dominating those sports. (Voi-fucking-la!) This months runner's world cover: weight loss special eat right, run smart, slim down a faster 5k when to stop the post run hottub..pros and cons knees hurt? Nothing on any race winners, nothing about champions, nothing about race results period. Amazing huh? Because that's not what the magazine is about. If people don't want to buy runner's world because their cover only shows a representative of 99 percent of their readership fine. But calling them racist for doing exactly what every other company does is ludicrous. And those throwing around accusations who have obviously never read the magazine need to think before accusing. The logic behind 'only white people on cover = racist movtives' is simple minded and childish. It's as if a black friend has no white friends so i call him racist. There might be more to the story, but it's not as much fun throwing around negative words and calling for boycotts. It's also harder and takes more time, so let's just call runner's world racist and get on with next topic at hand.

posted by justgary at 02:21 PM on March 15

This same Runner's World...or am I mixed up?

posted by chris2sy at 03:12 PM on March 15

Yes, that's it. Good find. The cover in this months issue is a smiling runner standing in the middle of a field, so I don't really see a change. That said, the article mentioned nothing of their racist motives nor trying to fix them, so I'd say the boycott is still on.

posted by justgary at 04:10 PM on March 15

Then why pick on Runner's World? Because the person calling for a boycott is a subscriber to the magazine. We're spending a lot of time arguing about the manner in which this subject was tackled, and I think it's a red herring. The alleged lack of non-white athletes in a magazine about running is worth consideration. The lack of a question mark in my headline would not cause anyone here to disengage their brains, and it wasn't meant to give an editorial opinion. The "race problem" I referred to was the accusation of racism. If you think the boycott call is groundless, say so. That's a more compelling argument than to suggest we shouldn't even be having this discussion about the magazine. Looking into the subject further, I find it interesting that Runner's World once published an article that has become famous in sports journalism for tackling race. In 1993, Executive Editor Amby Burfoot wrote "White Men Can't Run," an article that examined why black runners dominated all events from sprints to marathons. It got a lot of flak and was nominated for a National Magazine Award. This disputes the notion that the magazine is too fluff to cover the subject -- though maybe it has become that way today, even though Burfoot remains the executive editor. Looking at the cover copy of some issues I find skimming the web, I see headlines like Heroes: 8 Runners Who Inspired Us, Heroes of the Boston Marathon, and Training Tips from the World's Fittest Athletes. That makes it seem like there's some room in its pages for the top athletes in the sport, as the boycotter expects. The magazine's web site has talked about race in articles on Jeremy Wariner, a new black marathoners association, and featured the Ethiopian Olympic gold medalist Derartu Tulu. Looking at all of this, I'd say Runner's World probably deserves to lose some readers for not being more representative of its sport's top echelons. If they can find room for cheesy stories on Summer Sanders, John Edwards, and Mike Huckabee, they ought to be able to squeeze in some of the top stars of the sport. But my strongest opinion is this: the editors are idiots for putting a bunch of soulless people who look like Soloflex infomercial models on the cover month after month. I wouldn't pick the thing up in a doctor's office if the only other choice was a seven-year-old issue of Highlights for Children.

posted by rcade at 06:24 PM on March 15

The author of the boycott call has an interesting followup:

I am an assistant track & field (distance) and cross country coach at an inner-city high school school in San Francisco. Our student athletes are predominantly Chinese, Pilipino, African-American, Latino and mixed race kids. Mixed race in SF in 2005 can be everything from Russian-SPI, to Irish-Asian to Afro-Mexican. These are kids who achieve amazing results without the benefits of ideal practice facilities (the “track” is either a borrowed city college facility, or the streets–right alongside traffic, triple jumpers work out on the public beach). They need magazines that encourage and represent them as runners.

posted by rcade at 06:27 PM on March 15

And if Runner's World isn't that magazine, then there's an eager market there that can be filled by someone else, be they Running Times or some other magazine. People vote with their wallets. Give them an option and watch them leave RW in droves. And Runner's World is then free to pitch to Mr. and Mrs. Avoiding-Obesity-In-White-Middle-America, which is apparently a lucrative enough market that they're willing to turn their back on everyone else. I wish them the best of luck in that demographic decision.

posted by chicobangs at 09:33 AM on March 16

The lack of a question mark in my headline would not cause anyone here to disengage their brains Oh sure it would rcade. Though I don't think it's your job to put the question mark in (I believe in the individual's responsibility to examine the facts) many readers will take such a statement as fact. "have you heard? runner's world is a racist publication". I've already given examples of people taking it as fact with no more research than reading the post, and these are people familier with the state of claims on the internet. I'm guessing you think they're exceptions or your ignoring them, but if someone is accused of possibly being a pedophile and then a week later it comes out that they are not, you know as well as I do they will always have that word floating around them, no matter if it's right or not. If we were talking about an individual, more people would care, but we're talking about an evil corperation, so we let it slide. This is a discussion, most else I've read is not. If you think the boycott call is groundless, say so. That's a more compelling argument than to suggest we shouldn't even be having this discussion about the magazine. I don't think it's groundless, as much as misguided, and as I said before, I'm fine with discussion. I'm fine with this discussion. I'm not fine with a kneejerk accusation of racism, which is where most "discussion" resides. Looking at the cover copy of some issues I find skimming the web, I see headlines like Heroes: 8 Runners Who Inspired Us, Heroes of the Boston Marathon, and Training Tips from the World's Fittest Athletes. Look at this months issue. It's a white model. Who knows if he even runs. I can appreciate your research, but as someone who has read the magazine off and on for many years, it's never been about the top runners. If the cover was featuring marathon champions and excluding black runners, great. That's not the case. That's probably my biggest problem, reading comment after comment that shows the commenter hasn't read the magazine. And I might add that the 'boycott' and post was about the cover, not anything else.s But my strongest opinion is this: the editors are idiots for putting a bunch of soulless people who look like Soloflex infomercial models on the cover month after month. And I agree with you rcade. But this is not about race. I don't look like that model, and I doubt many members here do either. Runner's World, like just about every magazine in the world, is trying to appeal to their audience. But we're going to pick on runner's world because (even though it's not what the magazine is about) in high level running black people dominate. I would love to see more diversity on Runner's World, as I would on every magazine. I don't enjoy arguing this topic because in many ways I can't win. What I'm arguing is not that more diversity isn't needed on every magazine, and many aspects of popular culture, but that this is a a case of marketing rather than racism. I can go down the line at barnes and noble and every single magazine has someone on the front who looks like their intended audience, black or white. But runners world is treated different because at the top of high level racing the best runners are black, even though runner's world audience is not, and even though the magazine has never been about high level races. Espn magazine has to run the top athletes on the cover. If they ignored them the magazine would fail. Runner's World doesn't need the top athletes because it was never about top athletes. I think it's great that the original author is teaching inner city kids, but it doesn't change my opinion that though his heart is in the right place, his energy couldn't be more misguided. There are a lot of factors at play here, it's a deep subject. But our country is obsessed with race, and calling for a boycott on runners world is much easier and will get more attention than actually talking about the problem as a whole. In the end, this may end up with different races on the cover, and that's great. Maybe it's a case of the end justifies the means. I hope so. then there's an eager market there that can be filled by someone else, be they Running Times or some other magazine. Yes, you're right. There's a whole market of african american people waiting for a running magazine. You should start one. Seriously, and this probably comes from you never reading the magazine and never going to a race, but you're a long ways from reality. Then again you believed it from the moment you read it, which is my problem with this whole thing in a nutshell. Take the extreme views out of both sides and maybe with discussion we can get somethingn done.

posted by justgary at 02:15 PM on March 16

And I might add that the 'boycott' and post was about the cover, not anything else.s I'm talked out, but I have to mention that on this point you're mistaken. From the original post:

"Not one dark-skinned person has graced the cover, nor has been featured in a prominent full-length article in the more than two years I've been sampling the publication on the newsstand and receiving it at home."
His beef isn't just about the cover. Looking at a few old covers of the magazine from the '70s and '80s yesterday, I think Runner's World used to be a lot more about real runners and real marathon champions.

posted by rcade at 04:06 PM on March 16

(First of all, 20 races doesn't make anyone Frank Shorter, though I'll admit that it's about twice as many as me. Secondly, where are you competing? At the Pittsburgh (deceased) and Baltimore Marathons, no one's going to compare it to Freak-nik(sp?), but finding people of color wasn't a task, either.) Why assume that (a) everyone immediately jumped on this boycott bandwagon; and that (b) no one in this discussion has read the magazine or run seriously prior to this? Why ignore links that contradict the notion that the RW does nothing with world-class competitions? And yet, the boycotter is the one making kneejerk accusations? I think we appreciate the fact that marketing has a LOT to do with the decisions that are made. But marketing-minded decisions and race-minded decisions are not mutually exclusive. We understand the difference between Running World or Bicycling and Velo News or Running Times. But we also understand the difference between an explanation and an excuse. It sounds like some are saying that decisions- makers at RW have decided that its readers connect the sport with "Caucasian", despite the truth, but that none of those people making decisions make that same connection for themselves. I'll admit that I have a tough time with that.

posted by jackhererra at 04:25 PM on March 16

And yet, the boycotter is the one making kneejerk accusations? Jackhererra, I mentioned earlier that I was pleasently surprised that some members/people were not jumping on the band wagon. I also never said that runner's world had nothing to do with world-class competitions. I said it wasn't their focus. Look no further than this months issue for proof. I also never said no one here reads runner's world. But it's obvious with some remarks, basically saying "I don't read runner's world but...". In my opinion that needs to be pointed out. Yes, you can do research but it's not the same as reading the magazine over the years, although I think rcade is completely correct with his last response about how the magazine "used' to be. Rcade is the excepton however. I doubt many who don't read the magazine will look into it further. It sounds like some are saying that decisions- makers at RW have decided that its readers connect the sport with "Caucasian", despite the truth But that IS the truth. Yes, it's a sweeping generalization. There will be many exceptions, several mentioned in this thread. But for the most part, the long distance running crowd that runner's world is going after is white. Marathon, running clubs, 5Ks, 10Ks, triathlons, runner's world subscriptions, you name it, dominated in participation by white runners. Why is that so hard (or wrong) to admit? I'm with rcade in that I really having nothing to add. No minds will be changed. But for the record all I'm saying is that runner's world is no different than espn magazine, martha stewart, pcworld, chess world, knitting world, ebony or almost any other magazine on the stand. They put a representative of their audience on the cover, and in a hobby magazine, which is what runner's world has become, stories on people who are similar to the readers. People are holding runner's world to a different standard because in the professional world of long distance running african runners are at the top. But despite bringing up examples, which are the exception, runner's world today is not about top level winners. The person who jumps to a racism charge to me is no different than the unemployed white guy pointing at a new black hire as "taking" his job. It's a simplistic view, a way of viewing things that most people leave behind when they grow a little older. Bottom line, I think it would be wonderful if runner's world would take on a more worldly view on running. It wouldn't hurt their sales (most of these "Mr. and Mrs. Avoiding-Obesity-In-White-Middle-America" runners, as chicobangs puts it, are some of the warmest, most intelligent people I've met.) and might even help them. But I don't think there's a racist aspect to it at all, and I certainly don't think it's the job of runner's world to pull in other demographics of readers/runners, even if it's in their best interest.

posted by justgary at 08:38 PM on March 17

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