Thursday, September 20, 2012

The cost of running

A lot of people start running because it's a low cost to entry type of sport. Really, the only "specialized" equipment you need is a pair of shoes. Unlike cycling, you don't need a bike and a helmet. I guess swimming is pretty low cost of entry if you already have a pool. Running can be done pretty much anywhere at any time by almost anyone (I am a testament to this last statement).

However, once you start to run a lot, or even more than a few miles at a time more than once a month, you'll see that there are some things you need - a proper pair of shorts, a running bra (if you're a girl) a  wicking shirt and good running socks. And, unless you want to do laundry every day after every run, you'll need more than one of each of these if you plan on running more than once a week.

Then, there comes the moment when you start to do something crazy like train for a half marathon or a marathon. Then the stuff you suddenly need starts to pile up. Recently I started thinking about all the stuff I've accumulated because I've been doing so much running.  The list below doesn't count all the stuff I had before I started training for this race (shorts, shirts etc.). But here's a run down of some of the stuff I've purchased in the last couple of months:
  • Two pairs of shoes (approximately $110 per pair) - You'd think one would be enough, but when you have a foot that suddenly starts hurting at mile 5 regardless of what you do, you go back and make sure it's not the shoes you're running in.
  • Insoles for said shoes ($40) - In addition to a different shoe, mr. shoe guy decided maybe insoles would correct my gait.
  • Two or three pairs of shorts ($20 each) - I had some shorts, but only one pair that I really liked. So I went out and bought a couple more that are not as great as the one pair but are OK. 
  • Two hats ($20 each) - I never thought I'd be a run in a hat person, but running in the summer sun, the hat does really help. What doesn't help is losing the first hat you bought and having to replace it.
  • Five pairs of socks ($50 total) - I had a couple pair of really nice running socks and then several pair of cotton "athletic" socks that you get at Target. However, I kept having an issue where somehow neither of my good running socks would be clean on the day of my long run and one bloody heal later I vowed that wouldn't happen again. So now I have a pair for every day.
  • Road ID ($25) - If you run and you don't know what this is, go check it out. I hate thinking that I or Mr. H. could get hit or hurt on the road and not have any ID on us. This solves that problem. 
  • Glide ($12) - Runners chafe, enough said. 
  • iPod case ($25) - At first I wasn't running with music. But then the long runs got just so LONG. So a must to have something to listen to. Also, since my iPod is really my iPhone, I have my phone with me just in case.
  • Water bottle ($20) - I have only used this little hand held water bottle a couple of times because luckily the lake front has so many water fountains. However, the run in Cleveland didn't and longer "around the neighborhood" runs in the middle of summer meant I might need to bring some water with me.
  • Nuun tablets ($25) - This is like Gatorade but without the sugar and more compact. Must have after 12+ miles of running.
  • Countless Gue shots ($1.50 a piece) - Again, longer runs necessitate additional energy.
  • Cliff/Luna Bars ($40 for two boxes) - I gotta eat something before my long run
  • Run entry fee ($60) - I would have loved to run the 20 miles all by myself, unsupported...but not really, so I paid to run the CARA Ready to Run 20 Miler.
  • Cold packs ($25) - Tired, sore, achy muscles need cold packs. We've gone from having one of these in the house to four.
  • Foam roller ($30) - Tired, sore, achy muscles need to be rolled out. You think it's weird until you've tried it and realize how good it feels. 
So, if I add it up, I have, approximately, spent more than $650 training for this race. Well worth it I would say to raise awareness about childhood cancer and help send a child with cancer to camp.




Daphne said...

OMG! Now I have an excuse. No money. :)

Melanie Higgins said...

Daphne - You can always just start with shoes, shirt, shorts and socks (or what I like to call, the 4 s's).

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