Monday, October 8, 2018

What (running gear) would I buy with $1,000?


If I had $1,000 to spend exclusively on RuNnInG gear, what would I buy?

Well, that's the $1,000,000 question, isn't it!

We've all heard running is a cheap sport. All we need is a pair of shoes, after all, and a willingness to lace up and get moving. But, those shoes do not come free, nor do any of the other "extras."

None the less, I do have a few favorites....

For starters, there's the shoes!
I wore off-the-rack shoes when I first started running, at least for the first couple of years. It wasn't until I trained for my first distance event (Dam to Dam 20K, May 2008) that I broke down and dropped a triple digit dollar amount for real running shoes (from a real running store). I have pretty high-maintenance feet (freakishly high arches and over-pronation like you wouldn't believe), so "new and improved" models aren't always a good fit for me. I have worn Nikey Structures, Mizuno Wave Inspires and Brooks Adrenaline GTS models because my feet (and my entire body LOL) need support and stability. Currently, I'm in the Brooks Adrenaline 18's, but the Mizuno Wave Inspire 13's have been a great sister shoe to them. In a perfect world, I'd have several pairs of these favorites on standby so I wouldn't have to risk the "improved" models not working for me.
The Wave Inspire 8's have been my absolute favorite (but are no longer available) 
Arm warmers for the (warm) fashion win!
I don't remember when I was introduced to arm warmers, but I am hopelessly in love with them. My running outfit of choice is a tank top with shorts, but on cooler mornings I often add the arm warmers. Yes, they look pretty, but they also add just enough warmth without the bulk of a long-sleeved top. Also, if you get too warm with them, all you have to do is roll them down and slide them off. I also use them as an extra layer on my arms in the winter, as a base layer. I'd love to have several more of these (in all kinds of funky colors and patterns).
Even on a cool summer morning, arm warmers are a great option
Don't forget the hair!
Headbands are not a necessity, but they do come in handy (and also can add a touch of color). I have medium-length hair, and frequently many of those layers just will not stay in a pony tail without a fight. A headband keeps all the shorter whispies out of my face, as well as acting as a thin covering over my ears on a cool (or windy) day. One can never have too many fashion add-ons, right?

How about some (or several) race registrations?
Although I consider myself more of a runner than a racer, I LOVE my races! And, even though I have had some sporadic age group wins, I can safely say I will never win a race. In other words, I am not racing for any potential financial gain. Granted, one can enjoy running without pinning on a race bib, but the excitement of the start line is pretty hard to simulate on your own.

In recent years, with my love of the marathon ignited, so has my number of distance races increased. Not only am I doing marathons on a yearly basis, I'm also doing more half marathons as well. Some marathon registrations start in the $80 range (with early bird pricing), and it's upward and onward from there. Half marathons, in my area, average around $50-$60, but that's also contingent on early registration for many of them.
At the R'n'R Chicago in July
And then there's my ever-increasing bucket list of races to consider: Flying Pig, Chicago, New York City, Marine Corps, Baltimore, Twin Cities, Detroit...the list goes on....Did I mention we currently have two kids still in college? So, yeah, I have to be selective with the destination races I choose for the time being.

That's basically where I'd spend that bonus $1,000 if it were to come my way. As you can see, I'm all about the basics...I don't really have much interest in tech gadgets. I'm content with my Ipod Shuffle (although I may have to pay top dollar when the time comes to replace it, since it's been discontinued). I also have a very basic Garmin which serves me quite well, though I do not wear it every time I lace up.

I thought about including travel and lodging in this list, but even though they are a part of running (racecations, anyone?), they technically are their own entity. Often times, we book a vacation first and I find a race as an after thought (but, on occasion, the race comes first LOL).

How about YOU? Do you have some favorite running gear that you would splurge on if  $1,000 magically landed on your running route? Would you stockpile the basics, or splurge on a few higher-dollar items? Any bucket list races?

**I'm linking up with Marcia and Patty and Erika for Tuesdays on the Run.

**I'm also linking this with Debbie and Rachel and Marc and Lora for the Running Coaches' Corner
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24 comments:

  1. It wouldn't be basics, because, well, basics. You gotta buy them to run. We do pick our vacations around my races. Running cruise!

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    1. You certainly have taken some nice trips!!

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  2. I think I would spend the money mostly on race registrations too. I am a pretty low maintenance runner without a lot of gear. Traveling to destinations would be more appealing to me. Top of my list currently: Iceland marathon!

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    1. oooooh, Iceland sounds enticing! It's crazy how pricey race registrations can be, especially for the (longer) distances I like.

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    2. The Reykjavik Marathon is excellent and mostly beautiful and I very much recommend it. Race report on my blog if you're interested!

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  3. You are pretty conservative! I've got my fancy Garmin already, so I think I'd go for massages.

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    1. I honestly had not considered massages! Although, I don't get them very often ;-(

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  4. I feel like gear is something I'd buy anyway so I'd have to put the $$$ toward international racing.

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    1. ...and, you have another international race to look forward to!!!

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  5. I hear you on using that extra money for more gear! Right now I've been really thinking about getting a treadmill, which I know will cost at least $1k! I love racecations and would love to do more of them!

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    1. The racecations are fun, but still a little tricky for me (and the hubby) to do very often. The two younger kids are still close by and come home from college periodically, and I want to be here for their visits.

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  6. I see you listed Baltimore and Detroit as potential race options for racecations. I'm considering both for 2019 so let's discuss that more lol

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    1. Well, I lived in the East Lansing area for seven years, but was not a runner then...so I need to get back for a race. And, the daughter is only about an hour from Baltimore, so that's a no-brainer now that I've done Philly ;-)

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  7. Shoes is the gear I would need. I switch them out more frequently than the 500-mile rule since I'm tough on shoes. If I could stock up on the models that have worked, i wouldn't have to stress about the new and improved models.

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    1. Oh gosh, the new models always stress me out because they seldom are ever an exact replica. That's why I have leap-frogged between the Mizunos and Brooks...it seems like every-other year each brand works better for me LOL

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  8. I can so see the value in buying multiple pairs of a fave model - it drives my nuts how much shoe brands change up their designs!
























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    1. I know.....that's how I discovered the Brooks shoes...the Mizunos "new" version of the Wave Inspire (in 2015) just wasn't as perfect as the previous one I'd had.

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  9. All necessities! I do love all of your colorful arm warmers. I love them too but I always forget to wear them. Maybe this weekend looks like fall might arrive

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  10. What a fun idea! Even though, as you say, running is supposed to be a cheap sport, that $1000 really wouldn't go very far, especially with the price of many race registrations these days. I'd buy a couple pairs of shoes, a few new skirts, and pro compression socks (they keep coming out with new ones!). I've never worn arm warmers, though it's such a good idea, I should. I still have a few pair from when I was cycling regularly.

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  11. More shoes and ALL of the destination races!!!

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  12. Fun post. I would definitely buy some functionable running shorts. Mine are definitely getting up their in miles and a few new pairs would definitely be helpful :)

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  13. I think shoes for me, too, and enough bras for me not to have to worry about what's clean, and not to keep them going a little too long!

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  14. What, *wouldn't* I buy is the question?! I really need a treadmill to complete my gym before winter hits, so I guess the money would go to that...but that is not as fun as more shoes and race entries!

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  15. It's funny how standard races are expensive all over even if other things might be cheaper there than here. $50 is fairly standard for a non premier Half here too and one that I think is "too expensive" is so because it's double what another on the same course is.

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