I threw out my old race shirts…

Like some runners, I started saving my bib numbers and race shirts after every 5k, marathon, etc. I don’t really know why I’ve been doing this, but it’s been a consistent habit for about 8 years. I’m also trying to keep myself minimal, which makes the silly practice counterproductive. Well, time to cut it out.

Two years ago, I started scanning my bib numbers and saving them into Dropbox. This is perfect as I still have a reference of what races I’ve done, yet can keep my physical space clean. It’s also handy to have the option of looking up my race bibs anywhere in the world with the Dropbox app. So, if a friend questions my Des Moines Marathon from 2008, I can prove it! I have also been fairly diligent in recording my finishing times over the years.

Shirts though, they are harder to part with. The pretty ones (few and far between) I will wear out in public. The rest ended up in boxes on the top shelf, buried in the back of the closet. Maybe I’ll make one of those t-shirt quilts, I’d tell myself. But really, I’d never use the quilt and it’d go back up in the same spot in the back of the closet. On top that, technical/moisture wicking shirts are probably not the best for blankets. So, out they went to Goodwill this weekend. In total, I dropped off four large garbage bags. I have a feeling some of those won’t make the Goodwill rack and will get thrown into a dumpster (cough, cough Fools 5K).

To help cure myself of runner’s hoarding, I decided to capture one of my favorite races by taking a picture of the shirt. Below are shirts from the Marion Arts Festival from 2006-2014 (minus 2010). On a personal note, I convinced Michelle to run the race in 2007. This was before we were married and just starting to casual date. She showed up before the start but didn’t realize there was an entry free! Thankfully, she stayed and paid the $20. And as they say, the rest is history…

My new Salomon trail shoes

I finally got a respectable pair of trail running shoes. The last couple years, I’ve been using minimalist shoes and on occasion a traditional running shoe. For trails, I mostly wore the New Balance – Minimus Trail which I love. The downside to those shoes include sore feet on rocky trails or slippery with any kind wet, muddy terrain. This led me to using my old, traditional Asics for any un-groomed trails, which wasn’t much better but the rock were tolerable.

Not any more! I just purchased a pair of Salomon – Speedcross 3 Trail. I thought about which shoe company to go with and decided on Salomon because the company is all about trails, mountains, and anything off road. Right out of the box, the traction looks amazing, the lace system makes me wonder how I lived without them and the shoes even have a “climashield” layer protection for keeping my toes dry in wet conditions.

Just in time for a trip to Colorado next month!

Salomon Speedcross 3
Salomon Speedcross 3

Tucker’s New Boots

Tucker's Winter Boots
Tucker’s Winter Boots

We finally got some snow in Iowa and Tucker was able to try out his new winter boots. Normally, he’s fine just running in snow, but when the temperature dips below 10 degrees and the roads are filled with slushy ice, his paws can become cold pretty quick.

The boots took awhile to put on, but they stayed put once we got those paws strapped in. He initially started high stepping and hopping around because of the new feel. After picking up the pace to a run, he fell right into his usual rhythm and we were good to go. Five miles later, I had a tired dog and my training run completed.

Ruffwear – Winter Boots for Dogs

Ruffwear - Winter Boots for Dogs

Brooks Running Pants

Winter running is awful and just plain miserable unless you’re dressed right. Two years ago, I opened my pocketbook and bought a pair of Brooks running pants. Not cheap, but well worth the price.

Boy, what a difference they make on a cold day! Today, it was 8 degrees. With the wind chill; it was negative. I wore them without tights, just the pants and I was comfortable. Not warm, but not definitely not teeth rattling, cold either. The best part is they keep the wind out and yet don’t seem to soak up water/ sweat. And they have this small pocket in the back for keys, iPod, iPhone, doggy bag, or whatever your fancy. So far, I’m still in love. It almost makes Iowa winters enjoyable!

Get your own: Brooks Men’s Utopia Thermal Pant

All City – Nature Boy

My new bike! All City – Nature Boy

Happy Birthday to me! Thanks to my loving wife, Michelle, I have a new bike. It’s an All City – Nature Boy cross, single speed. Perfect for riding around our pot-hole laden streets with the option to ride dirt and gravel. I had my eye on a cross bike for awhile and when we took a trip to the local bike shop, I fell in love with single speed. It’s so much more simple and clean looking (lighter too). Hills have proven difficult but it looks awesome. I’ll sacrifice some utility for fashion.