This was written by yours truly and originally published in UltraRunning Magazine in July 2016
Hey Ultrarunners! Mid-Pack Zach here with some great tips on how you can step up your humblebragging game. You didn’t train that body like a finely tuned Ford Pinto and manage to stumble across the finish line – barely under the final cutoff – not to share your ultramarathon experience with the world did you? It is really too damn bad that our societal norms generally frown upon openly bragging on oneself. But, there is a solution. Thanks to all the social media outlets, there is still a way that you can let the entire world know how awesome you are, AND to do it in a way that will maintain your natural humility and non-attention whoring nature! It is commonly referred to as “Humblebragging”, and I am here to tell you all about it.
Humblebragging is a completely socially acceptable method of spreading the accounts of your legendary ultrarunning exploits and nearly unmatched badassery (and pictures of your awesome bod) using the guise of humility. Below I have expounded on a few of my favorite ways to humblebrag on social media.
“The Thank You’er”
This one is a classic! Rather than directly bragging about how you killed this weekend’s 50 miler, simply thank all of the volunteers and race director for making such a wonderful experience possible. Really lay it on thick and be sure to mention that without everyone’s support there would have been NO WAY you could ever possibly have achieved: (insert totally rad ultra-accomplishment here). By the time you finish this epic thank you, people will be so impressed by your giving credit away that they will then be blown away by the fact that (insert totally rad ultra-accomplishment here). No one will ever suspect such a thankful runner as a braggart.
This method entails a long and winding status update about all the ultrahardcore people who despite all odds were able to persevere to the finish and how you were honored to be a part of it and then – here’s the humblebrag – managed to squeak out an: (insert mega gnarly ultrarunning feat here). By congratulating everyone first you get to sneakily add in your awesomeness at the end. Works every time!
“The Help Seeker”
One of my personal faves, “The Help Seeker” jumps right to the point and says something like: “During the (insert amazing ultra-endurance performance here) I had to deal with a serious case of (insert super horrific, unpleasant physical result of ultrarunning unfathomable distance here) from mile 3 and still kicked ass – how can I avoid this before next weekend when I will be running in (insert ridiculously crazy and hard to get into ultramarathon race). This one is super effective because a.) you get to tell them about your badass race and b.) you get to brag about finishing in spite of injury or sickness like some kind of superhuman mutant. Definitely my go-to humblebrag!
Pro-tip: Make sure and add pictures! What good is an epic humblebrag if you don’t include a picture of your cleavage, finisher buckle, massive calves, disgusting feet, muddy shoes, rock hard abs, medal collection, mid-air leaps, etc. etc. Don’t just TELL the world how awesome you are, SHOW them!!!! Oh – and all you product ambassadors out there, don’t forget to #hashtag your sponsors!!!! Just kidding…. we all know you won’t!