Monday, August 31, 2009

Life's Simple Pleasure - New Shoes

I write to bring you some news that is quite possibly only thought of as “exciting” by me, but I will share it anyways. Yesterday morning, after our gym session and Dunkin’ Donuts breakfast, we decided to go get new running shoes. This for most people, is not an exciting event, but let me explain. I first need to give you a little back story so you can fully understand my excitement about new shoes.

I’m not a runner...I just happen to run. I was raised in a running household. Both my parents are marathon runners and my brother ran track and cross country in high school and continued on as he aged (he’s 24) to also run marathons. When I was younger, not only did all my family members run on their own, but they ran together. Have you ever seen what looks like the Partridge family merrily prancing down the shoulder of the road together? If the answer is yes, you might have passed my family. When they would go on their runs they always asked me to come along, but I would sarcastically decline and tell them I would get my workout on the couch. I thought running was pointless. I played soccer and danced in high school and thought the act of just running, for no point, was stupid (Looking back, it was probably a defense mechanism because I knew I could never keep up).

That all changed when I got into college. Fall of my freshman I had an epiphany. I realized that in the real world, when you’re grown up, running is probably the easiest form of exercise to do. Why you ask? You can do it alone, anywhere, with very little equipment. I soon realized that without soccer and dance I was going to rapidly gain weight and lose muscle because I wouldn’t be moving around to burn calories and I knew that I would definitely not be able to keep my sweet tooth under control. So I decided to try the one thing I saw the grown ups around me doing: run.

I soon began to run frequently. I became fascinated by the fact that I could continue to push myself and continue to add miles. I began to enjoy it, and even miss it when I had gone a few days without running. I started to pick up my miles as my lungs and legs permitted. And that’s when it became apparent that I wasn’t a “runner”. Sure I was running, but my knees started to let me know that I was not built to run. For the next 4 years, I struggled. I would go through spurts of running until my knees would act up just a little too much and I’d have to give them a rest.

That brings me to now. A few weeks ago I started training for my first half marathon. I have started training for other races in the past, but as my mileage increased, so did my knee pain. This time, however, I decided I was going to treat myself to the perfect pair of running shoes. So yesterday Ronnie and I went to a running store, Road Runner, and I had them look at my feet while I ran to see what kind of shoe I needed. I had done this once in the past, but had not reaped any reward. But this time, I can feel it. I have faith that my size 7 Asics Gel-kayano 15s will be just right. I have always run in Asics, but these I just have a good feeling about and with these new insoles that they gave me, they should be even better.

And that is the story of why my knees and I are so excited about my new shoes. Hopefully they’ll treat me right, feel good through my training, and carry me through the Shanghai half marathon in November. (My brother and I are going to visit my parents, who live there, for Thanksgiving and are running it together- and by together I mean on the same day he will finish WAY before me. My parents are merely going to be there to cheer us on, as they don’t want to tire their legs out for their half marathons they are running in Singapore the weekend after.

...but none of them will be doing it in as snazzy of sneakers :)

PS- Ronnie got new shoes also, but I'll let him tell you about them on Workout stay tuned.

4 people had something to say...:

Ryan said...

I totally share your excitement for new shoes! Every time I get a new pair of Saucony's and Super Feet insole,s my knees bow to me in gratefulness! Remember to stretch too, for me its my flat feet and tight hams and quads messing up my knees.

Denise said...

Love, love, love getting new shoes. I swear I can run faster in a new pair of kicks!

Somer Love said...

Love getting new shoes...

OceanDesert said...

Hey Mandi! Those look a lot like my last pair! GOOD LUCK with your 1/2!!!!!! ... and I guess we were a failure getting together this last weekend, eh? We'll hafta try again!