Like with any hobby that you get serious about that seems like a great way to “get healthy and not spend a lot,” it’s usually a fabrication. Running is expensive. If you do it casually, it’s not so bad, but once you add a ridiculous goal onto that original “Oh, I’ll just run for fun,” nonsense, you start racking up expenses.
My initial investment to start running was around $170 and worth every penny. I headed over to Fleet Feet and invested in some sturdy dry-wick shorts, top & wool socks that have made the workout easier and cleaning (as I wash them after every run in the sink) equally as easy. They dry quickly during the run and equally so after washing. It’s added comfort to both the workout and after care- much better than what I used to use! To save money and avoid going totally overboard, I have been using the Nike shoes I bought two years ago. Those shoes are the result of a previous “fitness false start” and were rarely used but they will soon need replacing.
When you make a serious life change (especially when said life change was originally going to be less-than serious) the little things start to add up- I’ve also been going through shampoo, conditioner, bodywash, laundry detergent & deodorant a bit more rapidly than normal as well. Add on the price of the other supplemental items I’ve tried- Gatorade mix & chews, vitamins, protein powder & health supplements and I wouldn’t say this is a frugal hobby at all.
But here’s the worst part- while most half marathons are relatively cheap to sign up with, I have not picked the most frugal of runs. I realize that it’s totally dorky to get excited over the medal that’s handed out afterwards, but seriously, runDisney has people like me pegged. They know we’re all about the warm fuzzies. They know we already dumped way too much cash into their Vinylmations and pin collecting- so why not optimize our need to collect adorable things with cute medals we can hang up with the rest of our kitsch?
But here’s the kicker- I haven’t run my first half marathon yet, and it’s already costing me plenty of money. For the past week I’ve been going out 4-5 days a week and either trying to build up my mileage or shave down my time. I absolutely love running (gasp!) and am totally impressed that with the goal of my first half-marathon, I’m more motivated to get out there than ever- it seems to have done the trick. As mentioned, I have had so many “false starts” with getting healthy, I am thrilled that I’m still motivated to get out there and work out even when I’m tired and sore.
I have no doubt in my mind that even a curvy, reforming couch potato like myself can run my very first half marathon, 13.1 miles, by January 18th, 2013. I am also not doubting my ability to raise $500 to donate to the American Foundation Suicide Prevention once I officially start fundraising. What I am questioning is my ability to stay grounded and not overload myself with my new zest for running. Why do I say this? I’m about to go over the deep end wiht this new passion of mine and you can’t half blame me… Well have you seen THESE?!
That’s right folks. Those are two other medals I’ve been lusting over like a badge-rabid Girl Scout. If you run one half-marathon at Disneyland and one in Disneyworld in the same calendar year, you get the special Coast-to-Coast medal. I kid you not. While I’m not going gaga for the C2C medal per se- I am drooling over the idea of running in the Disney PRINCESS HALF MARATHON. Yes, I have fallen off my rocker.
Good job runDisney marketing team, you’ve hooked another fanatic. I thought by moving to Chicago for two years I could escape my long-loved Disney fanaticism, but it has returned with a vengeance and in a new, ultra-fit form.
The runDisney Princess Half Marathon takes place at Disney World in Florida a month after the Tinker Bell Half at Disneyland in California. It’s a little less expensive since it hasn’t sold out yet and I wouldn’t be fundraising $500, but dear God- who knew when I fell for running I would FALL THIS HARD. I sure didn’t! Now I’m getting all gooey-eyed over the thought of a tiara medal and I’m pretty sure I’m sold on the idea of vacationing at Disneyworld the day after the run. Yes, there are many layers to this overpriced but delicious looking cake of delusion.
I’ve never been to Florida and thus, Disney World. I’ve never even run a half-marathon yet. Yet I’m already planning out my 2013 calendar with runs, anticipating what my next set of running shoes will be and pouring over pages of running blogs trying to figure out how other busy women make it happen without filling their closet with crap & losing their mind to goals.
I’m pretty positive when my guy friend thought I would enjoy running he had no idea how crazy goal oriented I am and how terribly fixated I get on doing things to the point of glorious overkill.
When I started running, I balked at the $170 price tag of the new clothes. I figured I would run casually and then if I got serious, then I’d worry about investing in a better pair of shoes and researching a healthy runner’s diet. Well, I got serious about running, now I need to get serious about saving up my money for a trip to Florida if I decide to go.
I have no idea if I can afford to do this running thing, but I feel there’s no better time to try. The job market for recent grads isn’t so hot, I am underemployed and running keeps me motivated and happy. I will just have to make some financial sacrifices in other arenas of my life to fund the running (cough, cough, runDisney habit) I’ve picked up.
When I started running, I had no idea that it would cost me this much time, energy and yes, money…then again, what really shocks me is how much I’ve grown to love it. Huge kudos to the marketing departments of Brooks, Nike, runDisney & Gatorade…you have made a really unfrugal habit totally beautiful for this girl!