I’ve owned many pairs of athletic footwear. I’ve owned cheerleading sneakers that helped to win first place awards at local competitions; I’ve owned dance sneakers that have taken me to Nationals and gotten me on my University dance team; I’ve owned running shoes that went on great morning runs with me, along San Diego Bay; and the list goes on. All of these have shared in great stories and great times, and all of them were easy to part with. It’s why I found it so surprising that this blue pair is still hard to let go of, despite the holes that are starting to appear, the lumps that are making them uncomfortable to wear, and the new pair (on the right) that I desperately need to start wearing.
Anyone that loves to be active, knows that a great pair of sneakers is one of the best investments you can make. Three years ago, I was given a Nike gift card from my company and it came at a great time, as I was shopping for a new pair and going through a difficult time. When these arrived, I was in love – the color was happy and it was instant magic the minute I put them on. They instantly became my best friends.
If these sneakers could talk, they’d tell you of the move we did to San Diego (again), the miles and miles run/walked along the beach and bay, during sunrises, sunsets, and many weekends. It would tell you of the hikes in Laurel Canyon, the miles on the treadmill during a breakup, and the move we did back to D.C. a year later. But what made this “relationship” truly special were the travels we took to Canada, Sundance, Malta, Italy, Turkey, Italy (especially our hike on Mt. Etna), Mexico, India, Iceland, and all over the U.S. The minute we were together, the stress melted away and the adventures began. It’s hard to believe I have to start over with a brand new pair.
So why share this odd news with the world? Motivation.
Some people think that working out requires a gym membership, or even a gym. Others think working out is a chore. But really, putting on sneakers and going for a walk in your neighborhood, or finding a great little path in a new place, or taking them with you on vacation, and spending time outside with fresh air; is just as great of a workout! A pair of sneakers (in a fun color) will take you places all over the world and the best part, it’s cheaper than those gyms you hate to join, as well as future health bills (physical and mental) that you don’t want. They’ll become your best friend through bad times and good. And before you know it, you’ll be posting similar things on your own pages when it’s time to turn them in for a new pair.
Never really bought a good pair before? Here are some tips:
- Yes, they an be expensive – know where to go! Nike does great half-yearly sales but if that’s not an option, look at Nordstrom Rack or any other discount store. My new ones were $50!
- Try them on in person! Every person’s foot is different and requires a different type of sneaker. Put them on, step on the ball of your foot, roll back your heel, and see if they bend with your foot in the right way. The wrong pair will feel odd.
- Arch type: Higher arches require higher, more flexible support. Flatter arches require a flatter, stronger support. I have a mid-arch, which needs a flexible shoe. To check both, the insole will have better curves and the sole will be bendable.
- It should be breathable and light: It doesn’t matter if you’re running, cross training, or just walking. Sneakers should not be heavy and should be able to breathe. Nike makes a lot of great, light-weight sneakers that will offer full support but not weigh down your ankles and knees.
- They come in fun colors for a reason! Bright colors not only draw the eye, but also create just enough serotonin to begin boosting endorphins (which of course, are multiplied immensely when you’re working out).
While I’m sad to see my old pair go, I’m excited to see where this new pair will take me and what we’ll experience together. I’ve already got some great plans for us, so stay tuned!