Just when you thought that this is a free country for runners, someone like Alex Mesa comes along.
According to a report in the Miami Herald, the Florida resident received a ticket for running backwards.
The 44-year-old had been out on a 5-mile run when police arrived and cited him for “obstructing traffic.”
His fine: $77.50.
“People honk, wave, drive next to me and ask questions,” Mesa said. “They give me high-fives, scream my name and cheer me on.”
Police say that Mesa’s problem isn’t that he’s running backwards; it’s that he’s doing it on the street.
“You can run backwards, forwards, sideways, on a bike or on a skateboard, but you cannot obstruct traffic,” said Miami Beach Police Sgt. Bobby Hernandez. “He was running in between traffic, and the officers were afraid he was going to cause an accident.”
Mesa says he’s been doing it for six years now with no problems.
Duncan Larkin is the news editor at Competitor.com and a freelance journalist who’s been covering the sport of running for over five years. He’s run 2:32 in the marathon and won the Himalayan 100-Mile Stage Race in 2007. His first running book, RUN SIMPLE, was released last July.