Here’s the truth: I’m not a gear-hound. I’m not even a gear-enthusiast. Unlike the multitudes of runners (and swimmers, and bikers), I do not fixate on the latest and greatest technology in shoe performance, sweatband soakage, or deep tissue massage wands. One of the reasons I started running was that it was cheap. Fresh out of graduate school and jobless, I found myself with too much free time. So I donned my aerobics sneakers, a five-year old pair of Sketchers that had seen me through three years of marching band and two years of Jazzercise, and set out my front door in an attempt to run.
It took me six months, and literally the week of my first half marathon, to be talked into buying a pair of running shoes. Little did I know that blisters were not necessary for a runner. There was comfort to be had in the form of a shoe. I need not have my pinkie toes poking out through holes, and the soles of my shoes could indeed have traction. With unusually wide feet for someone who stands barely over five-foot two, shoe fitting took a fair amount of time. By the end of the experience, the salesperson then talked me into a fancy pair of socks to go with my on sale, quite discounted shoes.
Apparently, not only were aerobics shoes something to be laughed at, but cotton socks were on the outs for runners, too. I purchased the microfiber, sweat-absorbing little guys, and together with the shoes, went for a run the very next day. Here is what I learned: my feet could care less about what kind of socks I am wearing. Heck, I eventually learned I don’t even need socks in my running shoes. They are that comfortable.
This was a relief. Those socks were seven dollars a pair, and I wasn’t planning on purchasing more anytime soon. In fact, it has been two and half years, and I still have not purchased another pair of fancy socks. I wear them when I have a race sometimes, or when they are the socks I happen to snag, but I do not go out of my way to put them on.
Perhaps the problem with this is that I am sock fiend when it comes to cotton socks. It is not unusual to find me sporting socks with cows on them, or goldfish. I have socks that outline the bones in my feet and legs, a variety of knee high striped socks, toe socks, socks with ravens, socks with stars. I have ankle socks, mid-calf, knee high, and thigh high — all which get a chance to go on runs with me. My favorite place to sock it up?http://www.sockdreams.com/_shop/edit/index.php. Beware: it can become addicting.
So while I do not need the Under Armor or the fancy watch, I do enjoy a keen collection of socks.
It’s the little things, I suppose.