In exciting, running related news (some of you out there may think that’s an oxymoron) I have updated my sneakers! An expensive but worthwhile venture.
I was back and forth on whether I wanted to buy my shoes online or in the store at JackRabbit. I could find them much cheaper ordering online, but I have such an appreciation for JackRabbit and all they do for me and other runners in New York City that I decided $120 on a pair of new shoes was a price I was willing to pay as a token of my thanks to them.
If you think about it, I owe them much more. They have provided me with:
-A running group that I can participate in for free, in multiple locations in the city, almost every night of the week.
In a typical week, I run at the UES store Monday, USQ store Tuesday, choose between UES and USQ on Thursday, and long run at UES on Saturday morning. If I wanted, I could also run UWS and Brooklyn runs.
-New and exciting routes that I never would have discovered on my own.
Wake up in the morning and don’t feel like doing the same boring loop of Central Park? That’s ok, I now know how to run to Randall’s Island for a tour.
Brooklyn over the Manhattan Bridge? Easy. You can run to Yankee Stadium? Sure you can!
And in New York City, sometimes a nice, normal friend with similar interests is a lot harder to find than you might think.
This goes along with the friends and running group. It’s crazy how long you can talk about running related things, and how little I knew when I first started. Cadence? Splits? PR? My mind is now filled with running lingo. How do I make my IT band stop hurting? Running friends to the rescue! “You need a foam roller!” “A foam what? Ow, fuck.” I can sleep in compression socks but never compression sleeves. Got it. CEP are the way to go, medical grade bitches! See, I sound smart, and it’s thanks to JackRabbit!
(Thanks for introducing me to this torture device...)
-Other Fitness Related Awesomeness
. A free spin class at the trendy new Cyc studio in David Barton Gym that would usually cost me $30? Heck yes I’ll be there! Oh, you’re going to give me armfuls of free OatWorks smoothies afterwards? Sweeeeeet. Free yoga? Free HIIT workouts in the park? The chance to sample and run with a new GPS watch? A free gel for every Saturday long run? (Those things ain’t cheap, people). Through JackRabbit and people I’ve met there I’ve also had a chance to run for people in a NYRR 4-miler and in the Brooklyn Half Marathon! 2 tech shirts! 2 amazing days! 2 PRs! Oh, did I mention once I got two free pairs of UnderArmour underwear for the day we ran to Times Square to participate in breaking the world record for most people in their underwear? They’re super comfy underwear too.
(OW OWWW ;)
-Beer and Burgers.
Yes, JackRabbit has even provided the new Jack to Jack running group with pitchers of beer to celebrate a hard 3 miles through the park.
They are that awesome. And their monthly Shake Shack runs? Free shake or beer or beverage of choice (and the first week, they let us order WHATEVER WE WANTED TO EAT TOO).
So although I say it all the time, THANK YOU JACKRABBIT.
Let’s go back to my exciting story about new shoes, shall we? We shall.
It was definitely time to replace my Guide 6’s. A lot of non-running friends have been asking how I know it’s time to get a new pair and I can’t really give them an answer except that I just KNEW my sneakers were dead. My legs were hurting more than they should for the miles I was doing, my calves were tight. The time had come to say goodbye to my blue and pink babies.
I had been out on a few runs recently in my Nike’s (bad for my shins but they were unplanned runs, sorrrrry legs) and actually loved how light they felt. So when I had John helping me figure out what to buy, I told him:
-I’m looking for something lighter
-I had a stress fracture
-My shins sucks
-I’m a 7.5
Things I also should have said but didn’t:
-I’m probably only going to pick a pair of sneakers if they come in pretty colors…
John brought out 3 different pairs and said they were each lighter but still supportive enough for my problematic legs. The first were an orange pair of New Balance. I ran a little on the treadmill in them and they felt pretty good. John said I was running fine in them, my right leg a little more wonky then the left but nothing to worry about (yes, I just used the word wonky, one of my gran’s specialties).
Second were a pair of Mizuno’s I’d been eyeing because they are SO PRETTY. Like, look at these. But sadly, they had a weird cushiony front piece that my big toe was mashing into- John said a lot of people complain about it. And I ALWAYS end up busting my toe through the top of the shoe as it is (another way I know it’s time for a new pair) so those weren’t going to work. So sad, because they were beautiful.
Third was a pair of Brooks that I loooooved the feel of. They were like hugs on my feet. They felt snug in a good way. But they were ugly, and had the least amount of cushioning and support. John explained that that also meant I would have to replace them a lot more frequently, which I can’t really afford.
That’s when I asked, “Can I try on the Guide 7’s?” D’oh.
Of course, when I hopped on the treadmill in the Guides, my feet were like oh, yeah, that’s right- because they’re what I’m used to. And they come in pretty colors. And last more miles. But they aren’t really “new” for me and they definitely aren’t lighter! But, as I am a creature of habit, and scared to make changes especially when it comes to running given my track record with injuries, I bought myself another pair of Guides. Here they are, ladies and gents, my new kicks: