I Think I’m Officially A Runner!

Big news: I finally feel comfortable calling myself a runner!

I’ve always wanted to be into running, but never really have. I’ve had stages where I’ve run some, but have never particularly enjoyed it, despite desperately wanting to. And then more recently my legs started getting insanely itchy when I’d run, which made running even LESS awesome. (Has anyone else out there experienced this? It’s seriously not fun. Seems to be something related to capillary expansion, according to what I could find online, although there are a few theories.) Thankfully, le Google helped me find a solution to the itchy legs (an allergy pill an hour before running for a few days), and eventually, as I got used to running regularly, the itching has totally subsided even without that cure.

For the last couple of months, I’ve been running regularly (read: 4-6 times per week) and eventually, to my great delight, started — gasp! — liking it. LOVING it, even! Craving it. And I have a great running buddy in Fulton, who is good motivation to get up and run in the morning, because he’s awesome at guilt tripping. Come on — those eyes!

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We’re to the point where we run about four miles each morning (four relatively slow miles, but still), and now my day doesn’t feel quite right if we haven’t gotten our run in.

Now that I’m running regularly, I think it’s time to upgrade some of my running equipment and accessories, and that’s where you guys come in. I need your help picking new running shoes and also a GPS watch to track my runs. My birthday’s coming up, and I’m thinking I might add some running gear to my wish list.

For the runners out there: What shoes have you found to be the best in your experience, and why? And if you have a GPS watch you love, what kind is it, and what do you love about it? (Any other tips for this newbie runner — both gear-related and not — are also quite welcome!)

6 Comments

  1. Millie

    Hooray!!! Running is awesome – and how can you resist that face!? For shoes, I recommend ignoring everything you read online, and actually trying them on and getting a professional fitting. Fleet Feet in Winston-Salem (or G’boro!) is a great place to go, and they’ll make sure you get the best shoes for you. My favorite GPS watch is the Garmin (I have the 910 XT – but there are running-specific models that are awesome too). Garmin is usually the gold standard for GPS watches. Have fun!!!

    Also – I’ve TOTALLY had the itchy legs – it happens more often when I haven’t been running regularly, especially if it’s a little chilly out. Miserable!

  2. gwynnem

    Yay! I’m glad to hear you’re stoked about running, Anna. I’m pretty low-tech with running gear, but I always invest in good-quality shoes. I go to a local running gear store and test out a few different brands based on my gait when I run. Ultimately, as long as you invest in good-quality shoes that work with your particular gait and running style, the brand is less important. That said, for road running, I’ve had good results from Asics and Pearl Izumis.

    Here’s the shoe I’m running in now: http://shop.pearlizumi.com/product.php?mode=view&pc_id=91&product_id=1966504&outlet=&color_code=251

    They’re light-weight but still give me enough support for long runs. Don’t be surprised if your running shoe size seems bigger than what you normally wear. I think I’m a 9 1/2 in this running shoe!

    For a good GPS watch, you should shoot Cameron an email. I know he likes the one he has. Also, since he bought an iPhone, he uses an app on the phone to track his work-outs, including runs. He’s a wealth of running info.

  3. Erin

    How exciting! Congrats on becoming a runner, its such a great habit and there is wonderful community around it.

    I swear by Newton Gravity shoes. I used to run in Brooks, but my heel always bothered me on long training days. I tried Newton’s out at an expo right before my first half, and have run the following 7 in them. The women’s Gravity is good because its an extremely light shoe that breathes well, but for me, most importantly, it helps you land forward on your foot. I haven’t had heel pain from running since I switched.

    Bonus: they come in insanely bright colors!

    http://www.newtonrunning.com/shop/womens-running-shoes/women-gravity-mileage-trainer

    In terms of GPS watches, I’m still old school and use my phone when I run to track milage and GPS. I’ll be curious to see what suggestions you get.

    Happy running!

  4. laurenlec

    Good for you! Running is so rewarding. Definitely get fitted for shoes at a running store. Strangely, I need men’s shoes. Once I switched from women’s shoes my blister issues completely disappeared. I never would have known that if not for a professional fitting. Also, I have a Garmin Forerunner 10 running watch. It’s pretty inexpensive and does exactly what I want–shows my pace, distance, time and calories burned. It doesn’t show my pace as I’m running unless I toggle down to the second screen, but I actually like that because I’m not too time-obsessed. I’m more about getting the mileage done and feeling good. The only annoying thing is that is sometimes takes a while to find a signal, so I usually press the button as I’m getting dressed, and then it’s found the satellite by the time I leave. http://www.amazon.com/Garmin-Forerunner-Watch-Pink-White/dp/B0090C7A5C/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top

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