100 lb. Club - Too embarrassed to run in public




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nitrus29
05-06-2013, 09:50 AM
I go to the gym every night and with my ipod plugged in, I manage to run / speed walk / run on the treadmill for 20 mins straight before I move onto other equipment. :carrot:

This Saturday the weather was REALLY good and somehow my bf convinced me to run with him on the streets of our neighborhood. (We have a really long but narrow biking / walking trail) I thought it was a fantastic idea (I never ran in public before) but but BUTTTT I was so wrong!!! :( I have never felt more self conscious in my life!!! :o Since the trail is narrow my bf asked me to run ahead. I refused. I told him to run ahead or next to me. I couldn't stand the thought of him watching me run from behind. Every time I'd see other joggers / walkers / bikers I would stop dead in my heels!!! I just couldn't run with them watching!! It happened SO many times! I felt like putting my head under the first truck I saw !!! :o:(

My bf was so super patient the whole time. He did get mad at me for not getting my ipod along cos he knows that music really gets me going. On the way back he even mapped a route which wasn't on the trail. He thought I'd run through the quiet neighborhoods where no one was watching and there weren't too many cars passing by but I just couldn't bring myself to it. He said he knew I had the stamina to run but it was a mental thing stopping me. He said I need to stop feeling weird about people watching and cars passing by and just run. He said that I can stop going to the gym but I shouldn't stop running on the streets !!

I know he makes sense but at that moment I felt like everyone had their eyes on me like "oh look, fat girl running". My bf is super athletic and does not have a single fat cell on his body (flat stomach n everything!). He is too freaking fit and in my head that was worse 'cos I was like what if I am embarrassing him? :o:?::( Needless to say we walked the way back and my bf tried to cheer me up with stories from his school days.

Sunday morning I went to the gym alone while he slept and I ran my usual 20 mins without giving a hoot about anyone there! What is wrong with me? I want to be able to run with my bf. How do I deal with this mental block? :?::dizzy::o:(


thnknthin1
05-06-2013, 10:01 AM
Yes!! I am just now getting to the point of not caring.....as much :) When I first started out I would stop dead in my tracks each time a car passed or I saw someone coming towards me.

I actually mentioned this to my DH last night. I asked him on his thoughts of what people were thinking "look at that fat chick running, how does she do it" when they saw me. He said no, probably the opposite, they are probably thinking that should be them out doing something and they should be getting some exercise too. I said you're probably right, because I think the same thing when I see someone running.

Thing is, I still "hide" behind my sunglasses regardless if it's sunny outside or not. I guess if I don't have to look someone directly in the eye I'm not as visible. Who knows, weird right? ;)

Novus
05-06-2013, 10:04 AM
Honestly, what people are thinking is probably more like, "I'm impressed that she's out here running even though she isn't skinny" or "What an inspiration! Maybe I should try running." Believe the best about what's in other people's heads! And, really, who cares what people think? This is about YOU becoming a better healthier happier person. Do what you need to do and don't worry about them.


Numina Dae
05-06-2013, 10:23 AM
First, major kudos for the hard work you are doing! I admire anyone of any shape or size that can run at all --- waaaay beyond my limited prowess at this point. Also, your BF sounds like quite the keeper and he obviously cares about you. So lots of good things going on with your post.

I do understand how you feel about exercising in front of other people, but my guess is that the people who see you are thinking in that brief moment: "Good for her my legs hurt was that a robin I better remember to buy more milk after work I wonder how far I've run so far I need new shoes because these hurt I guess it was a robin...." We just aren't that important to most people we pass on the street.

How much time do you spend thinking about what they looked like?

I am a body-weight outlier in my very fit community, so I can feel uncomfortable when the 85 year-old woman runs past me up the steep hill; I make it a point to make eye contact and nod or smile or say "hi" when I pass people. Most people are friendly right back and I truly believe most people wish me well.

I hope you keep doing this because running outside is so different and in some ways so much better for you than running inside. And so pretty! ANd there's birds and flowers and cute dogs!

NotTheCheat
05-06-2013, 10:24 AM
Your boyfriend sounds like a seriously awesome guy. :) The fact that you are getting out there and running? Also seriously awesome.

Read this: http://flintland.blogspot.com/2012/05/hey-fat-girl.html

It is hard to make that leap, but in the end, why do those people matter? Who cares what they think? If they judge you for trying to get fit they are jerks. Why do we get so wrapped up in what jerks think of us? :hug:

Icamp2
05-06-2013, 10:28 AM
I so get this! I am doing the C25K and Saturday morning I wanted to run but it was the city yard sale... no way was I going to run on the running path in town! I then thought I could go around the neighborhood and I just pictured so many people saying... Look at HER!

Hugs.... Just gotta shake it off I guess.... Keep your chin up!

ChickieBoom
05-06-2013, 10:54 AM
I was never embarrassed to be seen exercising. Apparently I wasn't embarrassed to been seen waiting on line at Chipotle or Georgetown Cupcakes either.

zoesmom
05-06-2013, 11:04 AM
Oh jeez! This is so me. Except, I can't even go to the gym without wigging out. But...I wanted to run SO BAD!

I finally stepped out for the first time on April 29th. Yep. I know the date. My kid wanted to go play, but the ground was wet, so we compromised by going for quiet walk...except she is four. Nothing is quiet with her. She ended up taking off within seconds of getting outside and even though I have a bright kid, I still have the mommy instinct that she is going to made a stupid mistake...like run out in front of cars, so I bolted after her, not a care in the world except I HAVE to get to my kid. Granted, she never left the sidewalk, but none the less, I don't like to take chances. Anyways...I ran. In public. And I realized once I caught up to her, that it wasn't so bad, but then again, she had been my distraction.

So...we went out the next night. And the next. And the next. I take her with me on all of them. We go half a mile before I drop her back off with her dad and I complete my run, because by that point, I'm worked up and not willing to stop. She's my distraction that keeps me from caring, because she is my ONLY point of concern at that time.

It isn't so bad, really. We do have a Douche-Bag that likes to jeer at me daily, though. You know the type, never had to work at anything. And of course, I live in a circular subdivison and have no choice but to pass him 4 times to make one mile. Man he is a jerk. And EVERY time I pass him, I KNOW he is trying to embarrass me, but it only pisses me off more and more. He thinks he is better than me. But not so. I used to be thin. I used to be fit. A car crash and a depressive fit changed me from fit to fat in less than a year...but I am doing something about it, although it took a decade. But...would he have the will power if the shoes were reversed? I doubt it. So...I have taken a new goal with my running...my kid is my distraction. Douche-Bag is my motivation. Let him eat my dust. I hope he chokes on his words in the next year, because I am so going to show him up. Jerk.

Anyways...I know where you are coming from. I agree with your awesome boyfriend...get the music. A distraction REALLY helps, at least, it helped me.

Remington90
05-06-2013, 11:14 AM
My circle of friends are all thin. My boyfriend is super fit, very muscular and often times I don't think he realizes that even small things make me feel uncomfortable. However, in the past few weeks some of my friends have noticed that I refuse a beer, or the bag of chips or "unhealthy tings" as a whole. And they've all asked me whats up. Apparently they don't see the 232 lbs that I do.

I wish I could run. I tried and it wasn't for me. But I live in a very rural neighborhood and have back roads with only a few houses on them. So I didn't get too nervous. I can see and feel your worry here though. It's hard, but honestly now that my closest friends all know I'm trying to watch my weight, they've all become subconsciously supportive. my one friend just said "keep doing what you're doing". And thats nice to hear, especially from a man. You're doing this for you and I really believe those "judging you" will be giving you a pat on the back that you're out running and not sitting on the couch.

It'll get easier! Good luck :)

100Mother
05-06-2013, 11:40 AM
#1 thing to remember - There is NOTHING wrong with you. You are who you are, and that is wonderful. Have you got a quirk? Yeh, you do. Do other people have the quirk? Yep, they sure do. If anything, it is normal, for especially a woman to be self concious.

So much of this journey is not about losing weight. It is about gaining ourself, our confidence, our lives back! (or gaining for the first time in some cases.)

I know it is different for everyone, but this is how it is for me. There was (and sometimes there is) a point when I realize that no body is going to fix it for me. I can't control a darn thing that anyone else does (especially what they think of me). The ONLY thing I can control are my actions, both mentally and physically. Funny, controlling my mental actions are sometimes more difficult.

This weekend I went hiking with my b/f. Similar to you, he is pretty fit, and well, I don't appear to be. There were lots of other people on the trail, lots of healthy looking people. Coming back down the trail, I could tell a lot of the people passing us were struggling (even the healthy looking ones). You know what I started thinking? Maybe them seeing ME, weighing 250 pounds, coming down that trail gave them motivation. Maybe there is someone out there walking that trail that you and your boyfriend were on, and they wanted to run but they were too scared. Maybe if they saw you running it would give them the courage and inspiration.

The truth is I could tell you motivating stories all day, all of us could, but what will have to happen is you will have to experience a moment where you just can't stand to walk that trail anymore, where what YOU think is more important than what other people think. Even your b/f! I think it is the greatest lesson we can learn on this journey; not how to eat right, not how to exercise...but to realize we deserve to do what we want without caring about what other people think.

My personal motto that I think of often when I'm facing something I'm scared to do:

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” - Anais Nin

*hugs*, you are doing amazing and you WILL get there! :)

100Mother
05-06-2013, 11:44 AM
Your boyfriend sounds like a seriously awesome guy. :) The fact that you are getting out there and running? Also seriously awesome.

Read this: http://flintland.blogspot.com/2012/05/hey-fat-girl.html

It is hard to make that leap, but in the end, why do those people matter? Who cares what they think? If they judge you for trying to get fit they are jerks. Why do we get so wrapped up in what jerks think of us? :hug:

Wow, trying not to cry after reading that. Thank you thank you thank you for sharing that!

zoesmom
05-06-2013, 11:50 AM
Wow. After your post 100mother - I had to click the link. I bawled like a baby. Thank you NotTheCheat - I think I really needed that.

nitrus29
05-06-2013, 11:58 AM
I was never embarrassed to be seen exercising. Apparently I wasn't embarrassed to been seen waiting on line at Chipotle or Georgetown Cupcakes either.

that hit home!! so true !!!

tea2
05-06-2013, 11:59 AM
When I first started running, I ran in the evening in the dark, lol. Eventually I began not to care (and it got lighter out in the evenings) and just enjoyed the exercise. I was doing run/walk and like you, I didn't want people to see me do the run part.

What is great is that the running community is super supportive. When you get to do a 5k, everyone will cheer you on!

Hang in there! :carrot:

AnnMarie77
05-06-2013, 11:59 AM
I think if you are uncomfortable running outside on the street etc, then you shouldn't be undue pressure on yourself to do it. I would say the same for anything really. If you are exercising regularly in a place where you feel secure, then just stick with that, that's what important. Not that you shouldn't run outside, not at all. But I just feel like losing weight is stressful enough, no need to put extra pressure on ourselves unnecessarily. I guess what I'm trying to say is it's ok to run outside, and it's ok to give yourself permission not to.

Just my 2 cents :smug:

sosurreptitious
05-06-2013, 12:05 PM
I was never embarrassed to be seen exercising. Apparently I wasn't embarrassed to been seen waiting on line at Chipotle or Georgetown Cupcakes either.



This is so true! Thanks, I definitely needed something like this today!

nitrus29
05-06-2013, 12:15 PM
thnknthin1 - I think I will try the sunglasses option. Worry is I sweat like a pig so I'm pretty sure I will be struggling to keep my glasses from slipping off my face!! :D

Numina Dae - yes, running outside does have it's plus side, it's so refreshing when compared to a sweaty gym !!

NotTheCheat - that was inspiring! thank you for sharing!!

zoesmom - wow, I'm sorry you have to deal with a douche on a daily basis!! as long as the douche-baggery is motivating you.. :hug:

100Mother - I loved that quote! Thanks for sharing!!

Remington90 - I so get you!! No one I meet on a regular basis has noticed the weight loss but my friends have noticed me saying NO to alcohol and junk food too & yes they all said "c'mon one beer wont do u any harm" or something on those lines but eventually they figured that I was serious about this so they are being supportive of my choices!! We will get there, I'm sure :hug:

AnnMarie77 - I am comfortable in the gym but I do love the outdoors and I am a new runner. I couldn't run to save my life a few months ago!! So I would definitely want to graduate from the gym to the trails!!

Thanks for understanding guys, I feel so much better!! I know I can do this and maybe next weekend, I will ask my bf if he would like to join me for a run outside ;)

AdorkablePG
05-06-2013, 12:20 PM
Nancy, thank you so much for the link. Loved it!

Beck
05-06-2013, 12:37 PM
I started running about 2 years ago- couldn't even run a 1/8th of a mile without being winded- and started with the c25k plan. I got hooked on running and just ran my second 1/2 marathon yesterday (got another in 3 weeks), and am now seriously thinking about trying a full marathon in the fall or spring of next year. I was also self conscious, but now that I'm on the flip side, I am so inspired by heavier runners that I see. You don't know the stories behind the others on the path; maybe they have a story similar to mine or others here at 3FC- and they feel proud of you for being out there too. Try to think positively!

Honestly, what people are thinking is probably more like, "I'm impressed that she's out here running even though she isn't skinny" or "What an inspiration! Maybe I should try running." Believe the best about what's in other people's heads! And, really, who cares what people think? This is about YOU becoming a better healthier happier person. Do what you need to do and don't worry about them.

I agree that most people, if they notice at all, are thinking, "Rock on, girl!" When I'm running now, I'm often too focused on my own thing to notice anyone else beyond a second- I give a little wave or high five to runners that I pass- then get back into my own running meditation. You are an inspiration for getting out there; don't hold yourself back because you think others might be thinking negatively because you end up 1) hurting yourself and 2) you don't know who you might inspire today if you go out there and run.


I hope you keep doing this because running outside is so different and in some ways so much better for you than running inside. And so pretty! ANd there's birds and flowers and cute dogs!

I agree! I can't run on the treadmill; I only run outside and it's so nice to smell the flowers (lilacs now!), wood fires in the winter, leaves in the fall, etc as I run. It's funny; I feel more self-conscious on the treadmill at the gym because it might be the same person staring at my rear for several miles whereas when I'm running outside the person or car passes and it's a matter of seconds.

Keep on going!

LadyPurl
05-06-2013, 01:08 PM
I've just started running and with no treadmill outside is the only option. The first week I was like you and would stop running whenever someone could see me. After my third time out I got over it, who cares what they think. I'm out and I'm doing it and this is just about me now. Music and direction (I am using the Zombie 5K program) help me stay focused on me while I am running.

I think it is one of those things that the more you do it the less sensitive you'll be, for your first time out you did great and feeling self-conscious is normal. Keep trying it here and there and you may find that you become more comfortable.

Numina Dae
05-06-2013, 02:06 PM
LadyPurl: I'm out and I'm doing it and this is just about me now. Music and direction (I am using the Zombie 5K program) help me stay focused on me while I am running.

Is the Zombie 5k Program you use something like this? https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sixtostart.zombies5k&hl=en

Definitely sounds interesting!

rodeogirl
05-06-2013, 02:27 PM
I went on a 5 mile hike this weekend up some moderately hilly terrain (I did about 850ft of elevation gain in the first mile-ish of the hike.)

It was tough. I had to stop a lot. Hiking ettiquette is that the people going down hill step aside for the person going uphill. I always stepped aside for everyone, lol.

At one spot there was a tricky washed out part of the trail where I had to kind of jump down a couple of feet. It wasn't very far but I was trying to figure out how to get down it without breaking an ankle. Two very fit ladies came from the other direction and easily scrambled up the path. I suddenly became VERY interested in a bird in a tree up the hill. Then they stopped and asked me what I was looking at and then asked if I could identify the bird. I was thinking, "please just go so I can try to navigate this thing on my own*." hahaha

Anyhow I think we all do it. But I met three very fit guys on the trail who asked me what trails connected back where I had come from. I told them and they thanked me enthusiastically. I'm pretty sure they were kind of impressed that I was coming from a part of the trail you can't get to without some effort.

* I do hike alone but only on well traveled paths and always with both a cell phone and handheld 2 meter radio with all the local ham radio repeaters programmed in (I have my amateur radio license). Don't hike alone if you can help it!

thnknthin1
05-06-2013, 02:31 PM
Awesome Rodeogirl! You're braver than me! :)

Nikel1979
05-06-2013, 03:24 PM
What is great is that the running community is super supportive.

They really are. I <3 the running community so very much. I never feel like the fat runner, just another runner. I've only ever gotten judgment about my running from non-runners.

When I'm running, I'm really not thinking that much about the other people on the trail. I'll smile and say good morning or good evening and keep right on moving. My mind is too occupied with my pace, how many miles I have left, how many weeks until my next race, etc.

ChickieBoom
05-06-2013, 03:42 PM
When I'm running, I'm really not thinking that much about the other people on the trail. I'll smile and say good morning or good evening and keep right on moving. My mind is too occupied with my pace, how many miles I have left, how many weeks until my next race, etc.

This is me. I'm too busy playing the, "I really want to stop but I need to keep going, how much longer is this going to last" game to give a second thought to anyone around me.

elvislover324
05-06-2013, 03:42 PM
When I first started exercising outside, I would walk either very early in the morning or after dark at night. I live in a very safe neighborhood but still, anything could happen. (And I'm more afraid of the animals out at night rather than the people!!)

Slowly but surely my confidence has built up and I'm slowly getting less afraid of people looking at me. For me personally, if someone walks or jogs by my house, I might notice them but I never remember what they wore, what their stride looked like, nothing! All the things I'm afraid someone is looking at on me I never even see on others!

The best thing I can say to you is act like you own the run (or whatever you are doing in life). Acting like I own the act is exhilarating, like "Yeah, I'm a runner!" or "Yeah, I'm a walker!" or "Yeah, I ride a bike!". These activities are changing our life and if someone doesn't like it, screw em!! But I have a feeling there are more people like me or you who get nervous about this stuff. So let's be strong and OWN it! We might be slower or larger than others but we are still lapping everyone on the couch!

Your boyfriend seems like a sweety; I wish you both nothing but wonderful things. You are a good match I think as you are a special person too, I can just tell. :hug:

And zoesmom, my heart breaks for you putting up with a bully like that.

Goddess Jessica
05-06-2013, 04:05 PM
I used to run at night.

And then I moved to a treadmill at the gym.

Now I run everywhere.

Girl, fake it. You have to fake it. You're never going to make that leap without the fear, the embarrassment, the nervousness. You have to fake it and pretend you're not feeling that and then one day, you will surprise the heck out of yourself and those feelings won't be there.

When I am feeling like the fat girl and that everyone is looking at me, I repeat to myself, "I am Xena Warrior Princess. I am Xena Warrior Princess." It helps. Pick a mantra. Do it.
http://www.ravenwavesblog.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/xena-warrior-princess8370.jpg

Don't let the person stopping you be YOU!

LadyPurl
05-06-2013, 07:43 PM
Is the Zombie 5k Program you use something like this? https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.sixtostart.zombies5k&hl=en

Definitely sounds interesting!

That is the one! I'm on week 3 and enjoying it, made it to running 8 minutes non stop this week.

Another thing I do is tie a light weight sweatshirt around my waist cause I know my butt jiggles like no tomorrow and I am self-conscious about that as well - but with the sweatshirt there no one can see it so it can jiggle jiggle jiggle with no worries. I don't even notice the sweatshirt when I'm running.

Renniekins
05-06-2013, 09:23 PM
I'm exactly the same way. I've been going at dusk, in hopes that not so many people are looking out their windows, and not as many people are out walking their dogs, running, biking, etc.

I know that I'll have to get over it someday, though. I can't just run (or, shuffle in my case, LOL) at times that are inconvenient for me because I don't want people to see me! But for now, I'm sticking to at-dusk running/shuffling :)

asjb
05-06-2013, 09:43 PM
I'm a runner and whenever I see another runner all I think is "Good for them" or, if I'm in my car, "I wish I was running". People of all sizes run and it is a great community. When I started running outside I had the opposite problem to you. I didn't want people to see that I had stopped...so I'd push myself until they passed and then nearly collapse on the side of the road when they were out of sight :D

punkrocksong
05-06-2013, 11:08 PM
I get it...I've been getting up at 5:30 in the morning and walking/running in the cemetary by my neighborhood in the hopes that no one sees me. You've taken the first step...that's a big accomplishment! And you're boyfriend sounds like an awesome guy. I would say "screw em - who cares what anyone else thinks" - but that means I would have to follow my own advice and I'm not quite there yet.

nitrus29
05-07-2013, 09:28 AM
I get it...I've been getting up at 5:30 in the morning and walking/running in the cemetary by my neighborhood in the hopes that no one sees me.

I didn't want people to see that I had stopped...so I'd push myself until they passed and then nearly collapse on the side of the road when they were out of sight :D

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: OMG you guys cracked me up so bad snot flew out of my nose !! (Eww) :D


Girl, fake it. You have to fake it. You're never going to make that leap without the fear, the embarrassment, the nervousness. You have to fake it and pretend you're not feeling that and then one day, you will surprise the heck out of yourself and those feelings won't be there.

Don't let the person stopping you be YOU!
wow, that's really great advice. Thank you!! I'm going to remember that!!


The best thing I can say to you is act like you own the run (or whatever you are doing in life). Acting like I own the act is exhilarating, like "Yeah, I'm a runner!" or "Yeah, I'm a walker!" or "Yeah, I ride a bike!". These activities are changing our life and if someone doesn't like it, screw em!!
you always find the perfect things to say elvislover324 Thank You!! :hug:


* I do hike alone but only on well traveled paths and always with both a cell phone and handheld 2 meter radio with all the local ham radio repeaters programmed in (I have my amateur radio license). Don't hike alone if you can help it!
Woah!! You are SO brave!! :carrot: and funny :D

Thanks everyone :hug:, you have no idea how much of a confidence booster this thread has been. I am sure to follow all your advice and take myself to the next level !!!

Trazey34
05-07-2013, 09:43 AM
Firstly, love your BF!

Secondly, wanna know what EVERYONE is thinking when they see you out running??? Every single car you pass, every single runner, every single walker, are thinking the following:

ugh I'm late for work
I want coffee
my hair looks weird
is that a squirrel
I hate my husband
awesome song!
my car's making a weird noise

Sorry to burst everyone's bubble ha ha but the world doesn't revolve around you being on the street -- sad but true, NO ONE CARES

:D

nitrus29
05-07-2013, 09:59 AM
Sorry to burst everyone's bubble ha ha but the world doesn't revolve around you being on the street -- sad but true, NO ONE CARES

:D

You are right! I guess it's only because I look at runners and feel envious and sort of pay attention to the way they are running because I am just starting out, I feel that maybe everyone else might be looking at me too (and judging) :?: but, thank you!!! If I don't care, no one will care !!

Nikel1979
05-07-2013, 11:58 AM
Really, I truly don't really notice other people when I'm out running. Running is my me time, where, if I'm not obsessing about whatever upcoming race, I just zone out. Someone could run by me nude, and I'm not sure I'd even notice that. During races, I pay a bit more attention. I don't want to get in anyone's way or do any more zig zagging than I have to. I have been known to walk or run with someone that is really struggling. Having been the person before that really didn't think I was going to finish the race, I'll try to chat with those people a bit and motivate them to just keep moving forward.

Some of my fave running sayings:
Being slow isn't a character flaw. Stopping is.
Dead last > did not finish > did not start
No matter how slow you are, you're still lapping the people sitting on their couch.
Run, walk, crawl, finish!
It hurts now, but one day it will be your warm-up.

I'm a slow runner. I'm getting faster, but I'm not fast by any stretch of the imagination. And that's okay. When I run a half marathon, I cross the same finish line as everyone else. My medal is the same. I ran the same 13.1 miles.

I've also been working on embracing the idea of "If it scares you, it might be a good thing to try," and "The magic happens outside your comfort zone." Both of these proved to be true for me with half marathons. Now I'm moving on to a full marathon and then a triathlon. The thought of both of those is absolutely terrifying right now, but I also know how good achieving those goals will feel.

ASaladandaDream
05-07-2013, 01:02 PM
I think this is pretty common. It happened to me too. I absolutely HATED running in my neighborhood, I was so afraid to pass by someone's house that I knew and they'd see me running. Hmmm. I'm not actually sure how I got over, but it took some time.

I realized that honestly, most people do not care at all. When we're running we feel like everyone's watching, but really they are in there own world thinking about whatever is going on in their lives. I always try and imagine how I feel when I see someone running. I either feel like ,"hmm i should be running" or i look at them for a second then go back to wat I was thinking about. Sure some people may judge you or think mean thoughts but the vast majority of people aren't like that.

Maybe you should try going to a track at a high school, or an area you aren't familiar w/, where you know you won't see anyone and run there? Maybe you'll feel more comfortable in a place w/ complete strangers that you'll never have to see again, vs. your neighborhood trail w/ you neighbors etc.

It's honestly one of those things that'll go away with time.