Another “brisk” morning run…it was 22 degrees at 7 a.m., but factor in the gusty winds and “Lake Effect Snow” (what lake would that be in Albany, exactly.. ? )it made heading out kind of sucky, for lack of a better word.
We always start out enthusiastically, all chatty and chipper, feeling like we could run forever, until that first blast of icy wind smacks you right in the grill and suddenly the fun factor drops. That’s when you have to dig down and remember why you’re doing this in the first place.
My main issue (because I ALWAYS have some kind of an issue when I run…it keeps me from thinking about the pain) this morning was my shoes. I run in Mizunos. Love them. They fit my feet like they were tailor made for me. I have narrow feet with high arches so it’s difficult for me to find the right technical shoe with enough support. Mizuno running shoes are expensive. Not “I can’t pay my rent this month because I needed new shoes” expensive, but they’re still pretty pricey. Add to that the fact that despite what some people might think, I’m pretty frugal. I don’t like to part with large sums of greenbacks on personal items unless the benefits outweigh the deficit.
Running shoes, particularly those worn for distance training and distance events, are good for roughly 500 miles. The pair that I’m currently running in has that many miles on them and then some. I know I need a new pair, but I’ve had a couple of unexpected expenses recently, so I wasn’t in any particular hurry to run out and plunk down the cash.
I thought I’d try buying some new gel insoles and replace the sprung insoles. I (erroneously) thought that might give me a few more weeks of training time before I had to bite the bullet.
Back to the group run…..we hit the three mile turnaround marker…start heading back…and that’s when I started to get a good feel for what it must be like to end up on the wrong side of the Mafia…..y’know….cement shoes. Any “bounce” that once existed in the concrete slippers that my feet were encased in was LONG gone. When my runs go bad, as they sometimes do…you can determine how unhappy I am by counting the number of eff bombs released. Then my hips started aching. I was in a vortex of bad-shoe hell….Walking made my hips ache worse, but running was upping the eff-bomb factor as it applied to my arches. Then in the back of my head came the insistent whisper of my orthopedic surgeon’s last words for me post-knee surgery; “Miss Shea, unless you’d like to spend your golden years on a motorized scooter terrorizing other Wal-Mart shoppers [he’s quite the comedian for a surgeon], I can’t stress this enough; no more marathons after you turn 50, and you’d damned well better invest in the right shoes, don't ruin my work”
I think my running partner is a Saint. We wear the same shoe size….so she offered to swap shoes for the return trip (well, it was either that or she was giving me a piggy-back ride for three miles) ---so we did. Oh Holy Comfort and Joy!! The angels sang, the sun came out, the wind was at our backs pushing us along and all was right with the world.
She made one comment when we reached the parking lot; “Throw those effing shoes in the trash…RIGHT NOW…they’re flatter than pancakes”. And that’s how we ended up at the diner for blueberry pancakes afterward.
It’s all about the food rewards in distance running. If they put a diner at the end of some marathons, I bet most of the participants would improve their race time significantly.
I’ll be posting my fundraising page soon, so check back if you want to help me reach my goal.
Until then, I'm off to Dick's Sporting Goods.