Even after watching the steaming pile of dung that was Fear the Walking Dead and realizing that after six years of The Walking Dead virtually none of the characters have learned how to not be incredibly stupid, I still love zombie stuff. I grew up just 69 miles north of Evans City where the original Night of the Living Dead was filmed. Horror and slasher movies were my bread and butter growing up. Either my parents were horrible at raising children or realized that I was smart enough to establish between ridiculous gore and real life. I am going with the latter.
Regardless, while there have been plenty of quizzes about how long one would last in the Zombie Apocalypse, I, of course, see most things through the prism of being a runner. Which is why I realized that runners would be either the absolute best or excruciatingly worst at surviving when all hell breaks loose. Let me delineate my reasons for each.
Why Runners Will Live Forever When Brain Munchers Come to Town
Over and over again we see talk about something being "four miles away" from something else in these zombie movies. Then it takes the protagonists like eleventy-billion years to get there. I hear four miles away and think: "OK, so half an hour, even if the footing is sloppy, and I'd be there."
Even if we are dealing with the fast zombies of World War Z, chances are most runners have the cardio to outlast these sprinters. As for the slow lumbering ones? Zombie, please. I've shuffled faster at the end of a 100 miler than these cretins. Runners would have no trouble at all staying ahead of the herd.
2. We'd Blend
Ever seen a runner after a marathon? We shuffle and moan like we are the living dead anyway. Until we get to a shower, we smell like them as well. Our stiff leggedness and natural aroma serve as perfect camouflage against the hordes of the undead.
3. Already Have the Gear
We have our Camelbaks, packaged food, filtration systems, body glide and everything else all lined up. Throw it in the sack and away we go. No need to worry if we have the proper provisions to make it to the next town, which is only 15 miles away anyway. (See point #1.)
4. Lay of the Land
Want to know fourteen different ways to get around town? Runners know them. In fact, we have also already ran down every dead end street and traversed all the lesser known side streets and alleys. We've been GPSing every one of our runs for years now.
Then again, just when I was thinking about how our badassery is umatched, I realized runners have some seriously fatal flaws which would turn us into zombie food rather quickly.
Why We Are Toast
1. No Runner Left Behind
If you are a runner worth your salt, you never drop the slowest runner. That means you have to keep going back for Janice in Accounting, even though she clearly doesn't GAF. (Thank you, John Oliver.) Backtracking means we are inevitably going to get cornered. If we just didn't care about anyone else (like the way triathletes do) we would be good.
2. We Can Be Whiny
With no power grid, how can we upload our workouts to Strava? Will anyone know how epic our vert was up that mountain if we don't Instagram it? What's the point of having abs unless I can show them off to adoring friends?! I see no point in going on.
You know that even in an intense lockdown situation where the need for absolute quiet is essential, we would be out there making sure to get in our five miler. That's what the schedule called for, geesh. "If they chase me I will just use it as a fartlek. Of course my watching is beeping. I need to know my pace!"
Conclusion: Maybe we will last longer and maybe we will die sooner. I guess we should just be like Carl and stay in the damn house. Otherwise the walkers will smell our bloody nipples.