Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Digging Through My Old Stuff

My girlfriend was planning to make me a christmas present out of my old medals. I thought that maybe she was going to melt them down and create an armored, weaponized flying suit. Once I accepted that that probably wasn't going to happen, she told me that she was going to make a windchime. It's a way cooler idea than me just hitting my head on them when I dig my junk out of my closet, and it shows how thoughtful she is.

While looking through the old medals, I found my very first one, from my very first race. It had no ribbon and it was the size of a quarter. It's perfect. A small momento to commemorate the race and nothing more. Ostentatious displays akin to flava flav's clocks seem to be showing up more and more(ahem...North Country). Those of us who love the intrinsic value aren't in it for the swag. A little coin with a string, hung by a string I found in the parking lot will do just fine.

I'm not immune to this need for complication disguised as minimalism. Before starting over as a "barefoot"/minimal shoe runner, I wore one pair of shoes. For everything. I wore them out, modified them, then wore them out again. I now have more shoes than I know what to do with. I didn't own a GPS watch. My Garmin now has 4800miles and some change on it. I feel as though I'm better off now, since I'm running more miles with less injury, but I do remember the days where picking which gear to wear was a bit easier. Which shoes did I wear? The only ones I had. Was it above freezing? I wore my shorts from Target. Was it below freezing? I wore my windsuit pants.  I've started whittling it down, but still suffer from an inundation of shoes and clothing. I'd like to get back down to the following:
Good trail shoes(probably the NB MT110 or upcoming Merrell MixMaster)
Good Road Shoes(Nike Streak XCs)
Great Shorts
A pair of man pris
A pair of thermal tights
A waterproof jacket(Columbia Peak 2 Peak)
knitted gloves/hat
...damn, how did this hobby get so involved?

Shoes are tools. I miss the days when my toolbox contained only a hammer.
I trimmed these down to level them out after I shattered my knee, but before discovering
that barefoot and minimal shoe running existed.


  1. This years north country medals are just ugly and embarrassing. I wish they had spent the money on more food or beer for post-race festivities.

    I noticed you didnt include a shirt in your essential gear list... I guess that is no surprise.


  2. Great post... thanks for pushing me to do that 2mi run yesterday "gadget free". it was actually great to not look at my watch the whole time. i could just think and not worry about what my heart rate was and if i was keeping pace, etc...
    thanks Coach!!


  3. Oh good, people commented on my blog! I was about to write a post entitled "this thing on?"

    Jon, you and I both know that if its warm enough to take the coat off, shirts are optional! Either that, or I need to improve my editing process. You're right, money spent on useless swag is money that could be spent on beer and food.

    Jeff, you're doing the legwork, man! Gadgets are great because they help us think less and run more, but sometimes we need to think even less than that! Keep it up.