AFROH (Acronyms For Runners’ Other Halves)

Penelope Cairns |

In short – here’s how to survive their bizarre habits.– By Kelly Kidgell


Being a runner’s wife, husband or Significant Other is not for sissies. But familiarising yourself with these (amusing but accurate) acronyms could help you survive your runner’s tears, brawls, and episodes of sheer insanity.

PTW: Pass The Wine. Explanation not entirely necessary.
Something to do with the crazy often making us feel as if we’re LTWTL (losing the will to live).

TPCR: Toilet Paper Consumption Rate.
Obviously, it’s high in any runner-inhabited household. Apparently that’s on account of their ‘metabolism’. Although I’m certain it’s a simple case of being FOS (full of the proverbial).

STFD: Shut The Front Door!

You are permitted to shout this, at any given moment, during one of their boring running stories. For example:
Runner: Babe, you’ll never guess what happened at the club tonight. We began our pyramid fartlek (PF)…
Your hands should be as sarcastic as your face. He’ll soon get the message. You could also pretend to yawn. (I find just saying the word ‘yawn’ is less effort.)

BR: Banana-Ready.

That pivotal moment in any road-side seconding campaign. Stay firm. Don’t peak too soon. Nobody likes a flaccid banana.

NLB: Nuclear Laundry Basket.

The struggle is real. Cross-contamination must be avoided at all times. Sweat-infused, skid-marked garments. Use gloves.

GR: Gag Reflex. Stimulated by NLB.
Also by runners’ toes. Ugh! Bleeding nipples, too.

CT: Camel Toe. One simply can’t not look.

Great for self-amusement at races. Between the CT and PSPN (poly-short-protruding nuts), it’s like Cirque du Genitale down there.

FML: … You’ll mutter it numerous times a day, between your runner’s mood swings, stinky-running-shoe-induced GR, and having to pick up foam rollers, trigger sticks and moist running kit. Smile and remember the CT.

BP: No, not blood pressure. Bush Poo.

It’s a real thing. I’m just going to leave it at that.

FTE: Free-Time Envy.
Directly proportional to the number of children residing in your household. Ah, how we dream of having an hour or two to ourselves, as we death-stare our running spouse all the way out the door, fantasising about mixing Deep Heat with
his Vaseline.

TM: Taper Madness.
Insanity: that’s basically what it is. You’ll see and hear things you never imagined possible. Detailed weather forecasts. We’re talking wind direction, humidity and precipitation. FML.
Imaginary injuries, sickness and moodiness. PTW.

SF: Strava Frenzy.
A daily occurrence, usually indulged in upon the loo, a.k.a. the ‘throne’. Which usually leads to…

EROEP: Eye Rolls of Epic Proportion.
I see more of my roof than I do of my runner guy. SF? EROEP.
Intense interest in the upcoming annual race calendar? EROEP.
Tapering week, and subsequent TM? EROEP.

GF: Ghost Flu.

He’s certain it’s there, but nobody else can see or feel it. Presents mostly during TM.

RH: Race Holidays. Or, ‘holidays’.
Nothing relaxing about them, until after his race. Pack wine, and indulge in the race expos and registration. If you’re like me, you’ll pretend you’re a runner, and watch in amusement as promoter people act overwhelmingly interested in your fantasy race campaign. Sample the freebies en route to the massage tent.

RDT: Runner-Dispersing Tactic.
If at any given point you feel ‘runner’d out’, cough and splutter loudly. Groan, even. Perfect for expo crowds, awkward pasta-party mingling – and even in the bedroom.

SFP: Suckers For Punishment.
And no, not the runners. Us: the ones who embrace their psychotic traits, in our strangely addictive desire to fulfil our role in supporting incredible goals and dreams.