My Husband Thinks Running Is Selfish. What Should I Do?

Heading out the door? Read this article on the new Outside+ app available now on iOS devices for members! Download the app.

My husband thinks that running is selfish, but I really enjoy getting out there and getting dirty—and want to do it without his judgment. What gives?

—Julie Miller, via Facebook

First, take an honest look at your husband’s accusations. If you are devoting too much time to your running, then some other area of your life will be neglected. There are times when it’s OK to be unbalanced; sometimes major life accomplishments require it.

If you feel like you aren’t being unreasonable with your running and your husband still doesn’t get it, try hitting him with the science—exercise bolsters the structure and function of our brains. Running helps us create new neurons, lifts our mood and improves creative thinking. If your well-being is important to him, this tactic might do the trick.

If that doesn’t work, try giving him his own micro-dose. Start with a family hike or a walk around the block after a big meal. It’s OK if he never runs, but exposing him to the benefits of getting the blood flowing and breathing fresh air just might make him see things your way.

(For an in-depth look at how to manage running-based relationship stress, check out our recent feature, “Is Running a Threat to Your Relationship?“)

This article originally appeared in our September 2015 issue. Have trail-running questions for the coach? Email them to

Want to Know What It Takes to Finish at Western States? Just Ask Hellah Sidibe.

Find out what happened when this six-year run streaker and HOKA Global Athlete Ambassador took on an iconic ultramarathon in California's Sierra Nevada