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Is It Rude To Listen To Music When With A Running Buddy?

Etiquette expert Lizzie Post, great-great-granddaughter of Emily Post, knows a thing or two about the rules of the road—and the descendant of the famous decorum diva is a runner too!

Q: I listen to music when I run. Is it rude to do that when I run with others? I keep it low, so I hear most of what’s going on.

This is a great question to pose to a friend beforehand. I often will ask a potential running buddy what her preferences are and share my own. That way, we can decide ahead of time if we’re a good running-buddy match.

If music is what you need to get you through your runs, explain that to your friend. Say you’re happy to talk, but you’re going to keep one earbud in to hear the beat. Don’t be surprised if some friends say, “You know, it sounds like our styles are different and it’s probably best if we don’t run together.”

For the most part though, my guess is people won’t mind as long as they understand ahead of time what to expect.

Have a question for Lizzie? Email or tweet @womensrunning with the hashtag #ProperForm.

Lizzie Post

Lizzie Post

Lizzie Post, is the great-great-granddaughter of Emily Post and co-author of Emily Post’s Etiquette 18th edition as well as Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette 6th edition and The Etiquette Advantage in Business 3rd edition. Lizzie does speaking engagements across the country sharing advice about entertaining, weddings, dating, dining etiquette, tech-etiquette, finance and lifestyle. She has worked as a spokesperson for companies including Bank of America, American Express, AirBnB, and Genentech. She is a columnist with Women’s Running magazine, Good Housekeeping magazine, and She is the co-host of the Awesome Etiquette podcast on American Public Media’s podcast network Infinite Guest. She is a regular guest on American Public Media’s The Dinner Party. Lizzie offers a fresh perspective with an engaging and modern voice. She delights in tackling etiquette’s taboo topics with the media, making her a popular source. Her interviews include NBC’s The Today Show, Katie, Fox & Friends, Live with Kelly and Michael, The Gayle King Show, The Wendy Williams Show, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Chicago Tribune, Harper’s Bazaar, Travel & Leisure, Glamour, Redbook, The Huffington Post and more.