When I signed up online for the 2010 AJC Peachtree Road Race, I had no intention of training with more of a purpose than in past years, much less writing about it.
But when I got an email after my registration that said ajc.com was looking for volunteer bloggers, I thought I could have some fun with it. What could go wrong?
I told a co-worker who ran the race last year in about 50 minutes that I would be blogging about the Peachtree. He planted a crazy thought in my head. Why not publicly set a goal that I will run it in under an hour?
Why not, indeed. So I kicked off my Peachtree posts by throwing a gauntlet down at my own feet.
The next helpful suggestion my colleague offered was to retire my “75-minute shoes” from last year, even though I think I had enough life left in them to get to past this July 4th. But a nagging thought was planted – what if running in the old shoes cost me a chance at finishing under an hour?
So after polling blog readers for shoe shopping suggestions, I bought a pair of Mizunos for $86.40. They’re fine and an improvement over running on my old Asics with 300 miles on them. But I doubt the magic of Mizuno will shave about 15 minutes off my 2009 time.
I jammed my left middle toe into my coffee table in April and it never quite healed. Or maybe the injury happened when I threw down the gauntlet. I mentioned in a post a few weeks ago that longer runs made the pain in my foot flare up and readers suggested I try non-cotton socks.
So I bought two pair of Thorlos for $22.60 and they helped, enough that I went back and spent $9.54 on a pair of Balega socks. I have to say this was money well-spent.
My blogging counterpart, Lauren, recently suggested summer running goes better with a non-cotton shirt. Done, for $21.20. I ran five miles in it Saturday and was still drenched at the end. But even soaked it was definitely lighter than the cotton shirts I’ve been wearing.
The meter started running back on March 21 when I registered online and put $41 on my Amex. I could have committed then to go to the Peachtree Health and Fitness Expo to pick up my number and saved the $5 mailing fee. But I was noncommittal.
The grand total to get outfitted in a way that gives me a better shot at finishing the 2010 Peachtree in an hour: $181.73.
Whoops, forgot about the chafing issue and the requisite petroleum jelly. Make that $182.92.