Friday, August 8, 2014

My First Real Pair of Running Shoes

                                                      Track Shack apparently extracts shoes from rainbows

The best piece of equipment in any runner's mind is their SHOES! It is the difference between "Ouch!" and "Ahhhh". If your feet are hurting when you run or you are getting shin splints it can almost always be traced back to your shoes. I was in denial of that for way too long...

My first 'real' pair of running shoes came from Track Shack, a fantastic running store in Orlando that has been there since before I was born. When I first walked in the store I was a true beginner (aka: my first 5k was a month away). The feeling I got walking into that store was that of walking into a fancy-schmancy Apple Store while having one of those cobwebbed 'flip' phones in hand. I had a strong desire to test out shoes on myself - but I didn't want to look like a slack-jawed newbie doing it. But that was the beauty of Track Shack, they made me feel right at home and took all the guess work out of it! 

It's interesting when you first get your 'run/walk' analyzed. They watch for how your feet and ankles work - are they turning in? Out? Neutral? Any issues? Pain?   I was new at this and the shoes I had were so old and worn that I had no idea what even moderately good shoes felt like. After they decided I was a neutral runner they grabbed boxes of shoes for me to try. My eyes first go to the price tag.... habit of a cheapskate... "Don't look!" I tell myself .. "Those cost more than the last grocery trip!"  Okay, okay just try them on - it doesn't mean you have to buy them. (Right....)

Once you lace a pair on, they have you run around the neighborhood. (Those neighbors must get used to all the runners.) I tried on one pair, and ran... "Yeah nice, okay, what is next?"  Another pair "Oh wow nice! Supportive and springy!" Lets do another pair just to compare. Then it happened.... I fell in love... Brooks Defyance (5 at the time). Have you ever tried on a pair of shoes and then were pretty sure you heard angels sing? That was what happened to me. I ran around the block in those things as happy as can be! They were amazing! I don't know why exactly but they just felt right. They matched me to a tee! It was the most amazing feeling of soft clouds attached to my feet with the feeling of not even hitting the ground at all as I glided along. I was hooked!!!!

                                                                 Obsession... by Vegan Runner Mommy

I came back into the store with a smile of satisfaction and pure joy! They had to come home with me! I sat down and told the shoe helper sales person I wanted them. He said, "Try on this one other pair just to compare." So I did. It was not the same, I felt like I was running with someone else's shoes. These were not MY shoes! I didn't even finish the block, I turned right around and knew what I wanted. Brooks Defyance!

Back into the store I went, prepared to walk out with MY shoes. But then came the hard part.... $110!!! Really?!!!? I have a family to feed! Bills to pay! Are you for real?  I took a deep gulp and asked the worker if there were any on sale. Quite simply, "No." After a pow wow with the hubby and feeling like I was stealing food at the table, my wonderful husband tells me to go for it! "They are going to last you a long time, it's taking care of your body and doing what you love. I say go for it!" Did he just give me the okay to spend a ton of money?

So we got them and since then I treat them like gold. My most expensive pair of high heels was 65% off and I spent $42 for them. Yes I'm CHEAP.... so these shoes were over double that and I was not going to forget it! But running in them was so so SO worth it! They are/were fantastic shoes! I would never go back or try other shoes now. Brooks has to keep making the Defyance line... if not I'm not sure what my feet would think.

1 comment:

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