The Art Of Taking The Perfect Selfie


This year, the word selfie has been added to Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary:

self·ie :  an image of oneself taken by oneself using a digital camera especially for posting on social networks



I started this blog post last summer at the beach after I took my very first selfie in the car on our way to the Outer Banks.  Six hours in the car will do that to you!

There are many types of selfies: individual, group, funny, serious, action, posed, smiley-faced, duck-faced, seasonal, themed; you get the idea.  But today, I am only going to be talking about running related selfies.  No heavy make-up, push-up bras, mini skirts, four-inch heels, and cocktails in these selfies!




There’s the action selfie


The watch and feet selfie
(runners LOVE these)

The sweaty red-faced post-run group selfie
(runners also LOVE these)


 And then there’s the artistic trail selfie


The muddy trail selfie


The water-rushing-over-the-feet to cool-down selfie


The color coordinated selfie


The first snow of the season selfie


The camera-flipped-around selfie


And the balancing on one foot selfie


All of the selfies above are easy to take; you just point and shoot.  It’s the legs moving, camera bouncing, action selfie that’s a challenge for a runner to take.  And this is what separates the rookies from the pros.

Here are my secrets for taking a perfect running selfie:

1.  First you need a camera with a fast shutter.  I love my little Canon PowerShot Elph, but its shutter is on the slower side.  My selfie skills improved greatly when I got my iPhone 5S.

2.  You might have to take a lot of of pictures in order to get the right shot.  The iPhone 5 allows you take a burst of pictures so you can choose the best frame out of the burst.

3.  Don’t wait to snap the picture when your foot is extended out or you will get a picture of your knees with your feet hidden behind them.


4.  Adjust how you hold your camera so you actually get your foot and leg in the picture; otherwise, it’s a picture of your running surface.


5.  When taking a selfie of your face, be aware of what will be in the background of the picture.


6.  If you just can’t master this skill, you can always stop and pose, but you must disclose that it’s a posed picture.


posed picture


Now that I shared my secrets for taking the perfect running selfie, here’s my year in running!


The running in sand selfie


The running in grass selfie


The running on leaves selfie


The running in slush selfie


The running in snow selfie


When taking a selfie, have fun, don’t take it too seriously, and don’t forget to post it to Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter!



  • Questions:
  • Selfie:  always, occasionally, you’ve got to be kidding me?
  • What’s your favorite type of selfie?
  • Who’s going to the beach this summer?
Happy Running! ~ Deb


  1. June 18, 2014    

    loved this post! :)
    Megan recently posted…The YOU Challenge – 9 LovesMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    


  2. June 18, 2014    

    This is awesome! I always love your post-run group selfies you post on Instagram- so many happy runners!
    My favourite selfie is post workout to show just how sweaty you got!
    Abby recently posted…Taking a breakMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    

      Thanks! We do like our sweaty post-run selfies!

  3. June 18, 2014    

    Cute post!! Definitely doing a beach trip this summer and I’ll have to take some selfies of course :)

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    

      Thanks! Be sure to post your beach selfies to Instagram, because I just followed you!

  4. June 18, 2014    

    Ha…selfies. …I tried my first selfie last week when I hit the summit of my local mountain. Yeah didn’t post that. Just not a selfie person but really enjoy seeing them from others and the genius ideas people come up with.
    The running schlub recently posted…Trails…I Need More PleaseMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    

      I prefer taking a selfie of my feet rather than my face!

  5. Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama
    June 18, 2014    

    Ha ha ha ha. Great tips for selfies. Mine always turn out blurry. Think I need a better camera phone!
    Nicole @ Work in Sweats Mama recently posted…Wild for Wheels: Teaching Your Child to Ride a BikeMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 19, 2014    

      Yours probably turn out blurry because you’re running so fast!

  6. Kim Kim
    June 18, 2014    

    I have yet to truly master the art of the selfie – and selfies on the run?! I’m sure I would hurt myself!!!
    Fun post full of great selfies!!
    Kim recently posted…Growing UpMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 19, 2014    

      Yes, that should be another tip… Never take a selfie on the run if you’re putting yourself at risk of injury!

  7. June 18, 2014    

    Haha loved this! I take so many selfies during my runs now that I’ve moved to Alaska, but I always take them when I’ve stopped moving because I don’t want it to be blurry!
    kristenk recently posted…Wednesday Wisdom: How to Deal With the Midnight (or Mid Day) SunMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 19, 2014    

      Alaska sounds like a beautiful place to take selfies, especially if you’re getting the back gound scenery in!

  8. June 18, 2014    

    Too fun! I love taking selfies, it makes it more fun to document the journey!
    Cynthia @ You Signed Up For WHAT?! recently posted…Tri Talk Tuesday: The Taper CraziesMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 19, 2014    

      So true!

  9. June 18, 2014    

    Haha this was so cute and I’m definitely guilty of taking running selfies! My favorite is the watch and feet selfie but I throw a sweaty faced selfie in there now and then lol.
    Kels @ Blonder Side of LIfe recently posted…Confessions of the Unemployed MindMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    

      I’m much more likely to take a sweaty-face-selfie if I’m with my running group… like every Tuesday and Thursday morning!

  10. June 18, 2014    

    Ha – I love this! I’m a big fan of feet selfies, although I’m never running in them. I did a post way back about my week as told by my feet; maybe it’s time to do another one. We are going to the beach in two and a half weeks – maybe I’ll do it then!
    Dana recently posted…DIY Important Dates Wall ArtMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 18, 2014    

      That sounds like a great post! I just might have to search for it! :-)

  11. Cori @ Cori @
    June 19, 2014    

    I really hate the word selfie but this made me laugh quite a bit.
    Cori @ recently posted…Running A Race Under TrainedMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 20, 2014    

      I love making people laugh!

  12. June 19, 2014    

    I seldom take a running selfie. Looking at my Instagram, I have more post-run watch/shoe selfies than selfies of my face. My first one was last August at the beach, I think. We had so much trouble getting both of us in that picture on the Huckleberry last fall! If I remember correctly, our best one was taken while walking, but it still looked like a running shot :)

    We’ll be headed to the beach in August! When are y’all going?
    Meagan recently posted…Varmint 1/2 Marathon – Race ReportMy Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 19, 2014    

      That’s right! I forgot that we walked while taking a few of the pictures. I have no idea if the one in this post was taken while running or walking. It seems like yours turned out a little better.

      We are heading down to the beach after the wedding in August!

  13. June 21, 2014    

    So cute! I also love the snowy pics… it’s a good reminder of what’s to come a few short months from now!
    I’ve been trying not to take moving selfies because I’m afraid I’ll run into things and can’t get my phone back into its holder :) recently posted…Sacred Mountain Prayer Run ~Race Recap~My Profile

    • Deb Runs Deb Runs
      June 23, 2014    

      I’m loving our gorgeous weather so much right now that I don’t want to think about snow! And you’re right, taking a selfie while running can be dangerous. Taking the one of the feet isn’t too bad, but taking one of the face can be way too distracting.

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Race PR’s (Personal Records)

5K - 22:57 (7:23 pace)
8K - 39:25 (7:55 pace)
10K - 47:05 (7:40 pace)
Ten Mile - 1:16:22 (7:38 pace)
20K - 1:45:30 (8:30 pace)
Half Marathon - 1:54:34 (8:45 pace)
Twenty Mile - 2:46:14 (8:18 pace)
Marathon - 3:29:04 (7:59 pace)
Ultramarathon - 10:50:30 (13:00 pace)

2016 Race Schedule

February 14 - Run Your Heart Out 5K
April 17 - Loudoun 8K or Half Marathon
April 29 & 30 - Ragnar Trail Richmond Ultra
May 22 - Chicago Spring Half Marathon
July 4 - Firecracker 5K
August 21 - Leesburg 20K
September 16 & 17 - Ragnar DC
November 24 - Thanksgiving Day 5K
December 11 - Frosty 5K

Favorite Races

1997 Marine Corps Marathon (3:44:56) - first marathon and first Boston qualifier

1997 JFK 50-Miler (10:50:30) - first and only ultra

1998 Boston Marathon (3:39:57) - first Boston

1999 Steamtown Marathon (3:29:04) - PR marathon

2010 North Face Endurance Challenge Marathon (5:32:38) - favorite trail marathon


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