I finally figured out why I stopped running 20 years ago.
It was because of the shoes.
It used to be that running shoes were cool. Then the regular person, the person not into running at all, found out how comfortable running shoes were for just general, all-purpose shlepping around, so you found gramdmas and grandpas walking around the Mall in their fancy Brooks and Addidas “sneakers.” (Yeah, they still called them “sneakers.”)
So the running shoe companies got wise to this game and started putting out various lines of shoes for different purposes (i.e. “markets”) walking, cross-training, trekking, hiking, you name it.
And they clearly put a lot of money, energy and thought into design, color, and the over-all “look” of the shoe. But the “running shoe” division of the company didn’t have to be all creative and show-offy, because they had a captive audience. Runners don’t care much how their shoes “look” they just care if they “work.”
So now, when you go into a shoe store and look at all the “athletic shoes” they are very cool indeed, except for the “running” shoes which still look like your gramma’s mall-walkers.
And I think that’s when I left running. I left running when I bought my first pair of cool shoes and decided, “Hell, I don’t need to run to look cool, I can just wear these awesome shoes!”
But now that I am committed to running this half-marathon, I knew I needed running shoes, shoes that “worked, ” shoes that would bear up to miles of training. So I went to a specialty running shoe store today and had my gait analyzed and tried on 3 different pairs of shoes, and walked around in them, and ended up buying not one, but 2 pairs because I couldn’t decide which pair “worked” best with my feet. One pair felt more cushiony, the other one felt lighter and like I was in bare feet.
But they both had one thing in common: a whole lot of ugly. Gramma’s mall walkers.
I usually feel happy when I buy new shoes, but these shoes are embarrassing. Look at all the white on them. Look at their pathetic attempt to look “racy” with the stripes going all swoopy! Omg. Pathetic.
They’ll work, of course, but they make me feel sad.
Pair #1. The more cushiony ugly.
Pair #2. The lightweight ugly.