QT: Paying Your Running Taxes is Inevitable

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It’s that time of year again: tax season.

More specifically, tax deadline season.

Every year I tell myself I’m not going to wait until the last minute to do my taxes.

And every year, I’m pretty much down to the wire before I get the damn things done.

Guess what? Different year, same scenario here at Diz Runs HQ.

Does Anyone Like Paying Taxes?

At least, I don’t think too many people do.

Lord knows I’m not the biggest fan.

But I view it somewhat as the cost of doing business.

And as runners, whether we like it or not, there are a few taxes we have no choice but to pay as well.

Running Taxes Always Come Due

When it comes to running taxes, there is no due date.

On the one hand, I suppose this is a good thing.

There are never any running tax deadlines looming over your head.

And you may not have any running taxes that need to be addressed for years.

But at some point? If you keep running?

There are certain running taxes that are virtually guaranteed to come due.

I Guarantee It

The Wear and Tear Tax

The fact of the matter is that running really is a high-impact sport.

Every time your foot hits the ground, your body has to absorb that force.

As the miles start adding up, that’s a lot of force that has to be dealt with.

If you’re not careful, there’s a very high likelihood that your body is going to break down.

I'm Dying

When it comes to paying the wear and tear tax, you basically have a couple of options.

You can wait for the breakdown and pay your tax all at once.

Or you can pay your W&T tax a little here and a little there, proactively, in hopes that your total tax due is less than if you end up paying all in one lump sum.

Replacing your shoes. Investing in some recovery tools (and then fricking using them!). Getting a massage. Doing some cross-training and/or strength training.

None of these activities guarantee you’ll never have a massive wear and tear tax come due, but they certainly help mitigate the risk.

The Time Commitment Tax

Hard to make much of an argument that running doesn’t take up a considerable amount of time.

The time commitment tax is a bit sneaky because it comes due in a couple of different ways.

Obviously, there’s the time we spend logging our miles.

That tax is fairly straightforward, but there’s also all of the other things we say no to in order to make sure we can spend time running.

It’s going to bed early. It’s getting up at zero dark thirty on the weekends for a long run. Planning workouts. Scrolling ultra signup (you know who you are) and looking for your next race.

Running has a way of eating up a lot of time for most of us, and that tax bill is basically unavoidable.

The Non-Runner Comment Tax

This is tax is probably the easiest one to pay, but it’s annoying nonetheless.

At least, it’s annoying to me.

And there’s little doubt you know exactly where I’m going with this one.

When a non-runner finds out that you run, they always have to say something, right?

“You know running is bad for your knees, right?”

“There are more effective ways to lose weight than running.”

“You ran how far? I don’t even like driving that far!”


You’re not a runner? That’s fine.

That also means you probably don’t know what you’re talking about in terms of the health benefits/risks of running.

And I certainly don’t need to hear your unoriginal running dad jokes.

More Miles, More Taxes

As your running volume increases, the odds are your running taxes are going to go up as well.

But just like we don’t hesitate to accept a new promotion, and subsequent pay raise, at work simply because we may see our tax bill go up, we shouldn’t (necessarily) hesitate to grow as runners for fear of paying additional running taxes.

If we recognize what we are getting ourselves into, and plan accordingly, the increased tax bill is something we can handle.

Sure, we may not like it.

But it’s the cost of doing business, even (especially?) for us runners.

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