When I started to get serious about running and addicted, I went down the rabbit hole. Buy a pair of sneakers from ADIDAS just cause they looked cool and were light weight. Googled cheap running gear, since at this point I felt I didn't warrant the fancy stuff. Old Navy came out with some okay exercise gear ( I still use their compression socks and winter compression long sleeve shirts and hoodie). Got shin splints, but the clothing worked.
I then ventured onto www.reddit.com/r/running and was hooked. Everything about running under the Sun was here. I increased my knowledge on form, gear, nutrition, and so forth. My brain was ready, but I let my body take its time.
Feeling that I stepped into at least a padawan runner role, I now craved more gear. I spent hours looking online for new running gear, and would venture to Sports Authority randomly on lunch to browse sales. I never bought the running candy though. I asked myself, is this going to make me run any better or just give me some consumer satisfaction that someone else will see me in it?
I did end up buying some basic gear to get me through the winter (tights, beanie, gloves). But the best purchase for the winter? Vasoline for your face.
My brain craved more running related information. I talk about it too much, need more outlets.. spend spend... no no.
So I created my own little running community http://www.reddit.com/r/runnersinchicago and a Google Community page to accompany it. This is still fun and helps satisfy the craving.
But the gear! Oh the gear! Its all so flashy, high tech, new styles every few months, and all over the lakefront path in Chicago. Gu, sports beans, 100 sports drinks, running belts, oh I feel like a kid in a candy store. I see the new shoes, sporty tech shirts, and all and I get jealous.
Have I been making progress? Am I healthy? Am I still enjoying running? Yes.
Basics- good sneakers, no cotton shirts, posture, and patience. Every day I remind myself this.
Would I love tons of gear? Of course! Will it change anything? No. Keep it simple.
The less I depend on to run, the less I need to run.
Inform yourself. When do we actually need Gatorade? When are gu packets and all that jazz actually needed? Are you impeding your body's adaptation to the new exercise? Inform yourself on training and health, just as much as you do as shopping for the coolest trends, watches, and sleeves.
So my question to you, do you think the giant market for runners is helping attract people to run or just have another venue to look like you graduated from swag school?
I try to tell them to take a yoga approach to it, focus form, patience, and breathing. You will get the rush from running, not looking like a neon marker.
And support your local running store to get your first running shoes!
Please leave your feelings on this! I know as bloggers, advertisement is a big deal and looking good is great, but do we neglect the basics of the run? If someone new to running ran into your blog, are they taking away the best message about running?
My response is - establish the running thesis, and make sure it doesn't get lost in the consumerism or glamorization of running. I feel I could ramble more than I already did and may have lost myself typing this, but I would appreciate any response, agreeing or disagreeing with anything I said!