Looking Good, Feeling Good
There's a certain air of confidence you get with certain running gear; a shirt, favorite pair of shorts, or shoes. Is it me, or do you run just a bit faster when you lace up a new pair of shoes? After a recovery week and a short long run of ten miles today, I returned to Runner's Roost where the store was offering 25%-50% discounts on shoes and running apparel. If running is my addiction, you can imagine what a running store does to me. Whatever your passion is, the store that caters to that passion is a treasure trove for your hobby (or is it Pandora's box?) My regular running shoes are approaching 400 miles and due for the donation bin and I have been shopping for a new track (speedwork) and race day shoe.
The knowledgable team in the store saw me staring at the wall of shoes with my new jacket already in hand and knew I wouldn't leave the store without a purchase. They were correct. The lucky lady was a pair of Brooks Racer ST 5's. Don't tell Asics who I've been extremely faithful to that I've taken on a new mistress.
The ST 5 got "high marks" from two of the elite runners who were helping me out with the purchase. What I was looking for was a track and speedwork shoe since my Tuesday speed sessions are now picking up and I will ramp up to 10 x 800's as I approach taper for the Boston Marathon. The new mistress shoe should be light yet have heel cushion (for my Portland Marathon heel hangover) and some "posting" for my pronation issue. Once I slipped in my new custom orthotics and jogged around the store, I knew that was my next shoe. We have a match!
I certainly didn't pick out the Brooks for the color or style as they sport a Boise State or Florida State orange and blue color scheme. I'll wean myself onto the new shoe, and if I decide to run in them on race day, the question is "what the hell do I wear that won't make me look like a crayola box?" I guess I'll go Tim Tebow style if that's the case--Gator style. I escaped the store without too much damage, but picked up a pair of Zensah compression calf sleeves, and some Hammer product to try out on next weekend's 22 miler (Gel Paks and Endurolyte pills.) The only good news was that two shirts I wanted didn't have my size. I joked in line that I hide my stuff in the trunk of my car or reply, "no, I've had this for awhile" when my wife ask's "is that new?" I'm such a running apparel, supplement and accessory slut. I cave way too easily.
I reflected tonight about my early sales career when I'd read the book "Dress for Success" and explained to my (late) Grandma Lela that if there were two salespeople in that day, the one that looked like he's sold something before is more likely to get the deal than the one who looks like he can't afford a suit. My Grandma replied, "well that's not exactly fair if the other guy couldn't afford it?!" I gotta admit, I spring for a new singlet for each race and make sure I have enough miles (except for my rookie mistake in Portland) on my new shoes for each big marathon. Don't hate the player, hate the game. I need every advantage I can.