Sunday, August 26, 2007

To My New Running Mates

Dear New Balance 857s:

I have to be honest. You weren’t the first on my list when I went shopping for shoes yesterday, or even the second. You weren’t the sexy choice. That would have to be the motion control Brooks sneakers with the gold labels and fluorescent blue trims. You weren’t the fastest either. (Boy, I could get ticketed with the speed those Saucony racers would have been able to generate on the track!) But when I picked you off the shelf, found my size and laced you up, I noticed an instant connection. Later, when the shoe salesman invited me to take you out for a test jog, we ran in comfort, in unison, quietly efficient, not as runner and shoes, but as partners in a journey to something great. And even though I tested a few more pairs after you, racing them around the block like walk-on recruits at the combine, none of the others spoke to me or exuded the same confidence as you. So I negotiated with the salesman, obtained the rights to your services a few minutes before the close of business, and took you home.

So now that you’re here, gazing down at me from your pedestal that is the shoebox, preparing to run, I need to come clean on a few things about my running. The truth is, I’ve been slipping a little since that last half-marathon PR set three months ago that you read about in the blogs. Since then, my determination in running the long miles just hasn’t been up to par with the high standards others have come to expect and I’ve come to demand of myself. I’m blaming it on the bad weather, the bad health, and most of all, on the previous set of running mates, who’ve grown tired and cranky on me after 400+ miles on the road. So after our last training run today, when I ended up with two painful blisters on my feet, I’m retiring them for good and replacing them with you.

Tomorrow, we will start anew. Together, we will run strong through the tough miles. When marathon day comes, we will tear up this town like its gift wrap at Christmas. Hopefully, we’ll make NYC our pit stop to Boston. So, please, new running mates, don’t think of yourselves as a meaningless late season acquisition at the trading deadline, but as the vehicle for renewed hope and perspective in the push for the big finish, because November 4th is still ten weeks away, but I’m already finding myself pushing hard against the wall. Please teach me to be physically strong, mentally tough, and not surrender against the pain because “runners don’t quit, and quitters don’t run!”. Most of all, guide me to the finish line wherever that is so I can inspire and teach others how to do the same, for that is the ultimate purpose for my running.

Sincerely, Me


a said...

How much do I love that you wrote an entire blog entry to your shoes? Very much.

Good luck with them! :)

aham23 said...

new shoes rock. i dig the layout of you blog. very nice. later.

Ellis said...

Your new running shoes are just fantasic, I like them.

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