Running, one would think, it's the most inexpensive sport out there.
Really, all one "needs" is a good pair of shoes and the desire to lace them up and hit the road. Sounds so idealistic, simple and primitive.
But, runners know differently, am I right?
The shoes are merely the starting point. There's more to running than just the shoes, and it doesn't take long to drop some serious coin on such a simple sport. After all, if we're going to do this running thing, most of us want to do it all proper.
Shall we discuss a few creative ways to save a few dollars on this running gig?
First off, let's talk about the shoes. It's well worth your time and expense to get fitted at a reputable running store. Having worked in a shoe store (many, many moons ago LOL), it's a fact that not all shoes within a brand (or even a particular model) are created equal. You're taking a gamble buying shoes online, my friends, especially if they're brands or models you have not worn before. At least if you've been fitted for a specific model within a brand, you're taking much less risk buying shoes without first trying them on.
That being said, if you can find the exact model within a favorite brand, you'll most likely be alright. Hence, a few years ago, I had four pairs of Brooks Adrenaline 18's in my possession. I had purchased the blue pair at my favorite running store (spring 2018), then spotted a second pair (the pink ones) on the Brooks' website, marked down (early Fall of 2018). Just before the holidays, the shoes were marked down further, so I snagged the red ones. And, wouldn't you know, just after the new year, they grey ones were still available (and the price had been reduced further). The pink and the red shoes were still in excellent condition, so the grey ones sat in my closet, unopened, for several months. So, here's a hint, a lot of "updated" models are released in the early part of the new year...so the previous season model(s) will often be discounted.
Something to consider, if you so choose to search for discontinued models, or previous seasons' shoes, your color selection may be limited. In other words, most of the prettier shoes may no longer be available. We all know, it's the shoe (and not necessarily the color) that matters...but a plain pair of shoes can be enhanced with a change-out of the laces or some Sharpie magic. But please, don't let a boring pair of good shoes distract you from snagging a great bargain!
How about running clothing? Some of that can get pricey, especially if you're looking for quality name brand gear. You probably know that many races have branded items like track jackets, 1/4 zip pullovers and hats/caps. Some events, though, also sell patches with their logo for a much lower cost. I have a nice collection of patches, and I'm planning on enhancing some basic pom-pom hats this coming winter.
I have gotten some inexpensive items from a discount store (like Old Navy or Target) and sewed a patch over the brand's logo and - PRESTO! - my own customized gear for much less coin.
Let's not forget about race day! With the cooler weather, it's handy to have a few things on hand (that can be discarded) for those first couple miles of a race (or even a training run). A great place to find inexpensive items is your local dollar store. We're talking gloves, headbands, and knee socks (often times in seasonal colors and patterns). The gloves and headbands can be throwaways, and the knee socks can be cut into makeshift arm warmers.
Anyways, these are just a few ideas on cutting some costs with running gear and accessories.
There's even more ideas on these posts:
Talk to me! What are some tips and/or tricks you've utilized to save a few dollars with your running?