you are the saavy crackhead’s wet dream or: how to go running on less than $900

So I’m totally not here to snark (much); just to share some observations and also to do what I always do: help you poor, clueless wrecks of human beings live more substantial and meaningful lives and not come across as total dorktards to your hoards of loyal Internet fans.

I notice when bloggers run, a lot of the focus seems to be on the gear. (I say “bloggers” because when my real-life friends talk about running, they never tell me what they wore or how many GUs they ate; the focus is more on…running.) By my calculations, the most average of you are wearing almost a grand’s worth of shit on you every time you go running.

Look here:

Nike Tempo Women’s Track Short: $32
Lululemon Scoop Neck Tank: $52
Mizuno Wave Creation 12: $139.95
CEP Women’s Running Compression Socks: $48
Garmin Forerunner 305 with heartrate monitor: $299
Camelbak $49
Nike Dri-Fit Pro Training Sports Bra: $30
Bondi Band: $8
iPod/Smartphone + running log app: ≈ $250.99
One package of Clif shot bloks (x4 for 6 mile run): $8.76
Total: $917.70

And that’s just in fair weather. (Although it sounds like most of you retreat to the treadmill any time it’s cooler than 55°). No wonder you’re afraid to go running by yourself in “urban” areas: you are the saavy crackhead’s wet dream! Assuming an average crack rock is $20 (adjusted for inflation), and the average crackie smokes about four rocks a day, your getup could fund his habit for a week and a half!

Now, before you all start whining, I know some gear is essential. Shoes, for example. (Although that could be argued as well.)

I’m not judging. I just think if you rely on fancy gear to do your training runs, maybe you’re missing the point a little.

If you are going to shell out all your cash on gear, SAVE IT FOR THE RACE. If you wear cheap, ill-fitting, chafey clothing, and sorta starve yourself on your training runs, imagine how much faster and more efficiently you will run a race when you’re not uncomfortable and marginally dehydrated. It’s not rocket science.

Now, just for funsies, let’s look at what you could be wearing if you weren’t such a poseur:

Hane’s Men’s Ribbed Tank, 4 pack: $14.99
Last season’s Kinvaras from RunningWarehouse.com: $99
Target C9 Champion Women’s running shorts: $14.99
Target G9 Champion sports bra: $16.99
New Balance LS2 Coolmax ankle socks, 2 pack: $9.95
Gas station tap water: free
Goody Girls Ouchless Ponytail holders, 30 pack: $3.99
The voices in your head: free
Total: $159.91

I just saved you $758.60. You’re welcome.

P.S. I had this post in my drafts for a few weeks, and was annoyed to find a forum on GOMI this morning that kind of took the wind out of my sails. I’m not debating on who is a real runner and who isn’t, or how many races you have to do to be an expert; all I’m saying is if you focus less on what you’re wearing and more on what you’re doing, you might surprise yourself.

Snoogins.

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40 thoughts on “you are the saavy crackhead’s wet dream or: how to go running on less than $900

  1. “I’m here for the 5 o’clock free crack giveaway??!?”
    And God bless that Tarjay champion gear. Then again I only run like 3 miles around my neighborhood and don’t necessarily require anything more than a crusty tshirt and a hat to hide my identity.
    Oh and pants. Pants are generally a good idea.

    • I’m betting that link is going to get a lot of traffic today. =D

      I got a Champion bra at Dicks for something like $20-30, it seems to be more sturdy than the G9 Target ones. (My boobs have grown at least 3 sizes since I got pregnant.)

  2. I agree that many people (myself included) spend way too much money on a habit that’s supposed to be relatively cheap. That said, my more expensive sports bras hold my boobs so much better than G9 Champion and other similar brands. My Bondi Bands were all $5 each by the way. But I’d be scared to calculate how much money I’ve spend on running over the last two years.

    • Dude, same here, not hating at all. You should have a solid bra that holds your boobs up, I’m just pointing out that wearing all your best shit on a training run is kind of like wearing a prom dress to the grocery store. Or your Christian Louboutins to Buffalo Wild Wings. Heh.

  3. The majority of my workout shirts are cotton tees with the sleeves cut off. Pretty sure everyone in my gym looks at me like I’m homeless.

    I don’t mind. At least the people who work there leave me alone that way… because by the looks of me, I’m not going to be able to afford any training sessions any time soon. 🙂

  4. I love Target Champion C9 gear and my sister’s employee discount at Lady Foot Locker. I’m a lot more comfortable in my Target Champion gear than in the Nike stuff (that was half off).

    Does it count if my Garmin was a gift and the iPod Shuffle I use belongs to an ex? (He’s never asked for it back.)

  5. Christ. I’d much rather spend that grand on a trip to Vegas. At least then I’d be drunk and not thinking abotu the fact that I don’t have a grand to spare.

    But WHAT would I post about??????

  6. I run in old cotton wife-beaters purchased at Target years ago for $2. I am kind of picky (ok, a lot picky) when it comes to shorts, so I insist on my Nike Be Bold shorts, but they’re kind of not in the regular production line anymore so when I can find them for sale online they’re usually on clearance for $30-something, and I only have two pairs. Let’s not even talk about the fact I only own two sports bras and they are both more than six years old.

    So I guess that makes my Garmin 410 and Pearl Izumi SyncroFuels my “high dollar” gear. I like to ball in moderation.

  7. you are doing it wrong. when i run, it costs me wayyy more than $900 per run. think about it. you are forgetting essentials such as a state of the art camera to take pictures of myself with, post-run massages and acupuncture, play-lists (purchased, because i am not fucking poor). Also, i don’t run a race unless it takes at least four hours to fly there. Once again, because i am not poor. i mean, i don’t work, but my husband does.

  8. My exboyfriend bought me my Garmin. AHAHAHAHAHA.

    (seriously though – summer sidewalk sale at your local running store for winter gear. Half off the good stuff)

  9. Hahaha, thank you for this post! I own nothing Lululemon (really, $50 for one pair of shorts?!) and didn’t think CamelBaks could get more ridic until I saw the near-$50 price tag.

    I did splurge on the CEP socks when I had a $25 for $50 Groupon for an NYC running store. And on a Garmin, which has helped me immensely in my current training cycle. But otherwise? C9 by Champion at Target for life.

  10. Mmmh, but you have to figure in depreciation (or, as I like to call it, Cost Per Wear) (not that I own anything from Lululemon, because Germany and good shopping do not go together, but I might, hypothetically, own a few pairs of €120 shoes and a Garmin 405). Sure, the outfit might be worth $900 the first time you wear it, but what if the crackhead only gets around to mugging you on the 50th wear, when the clothes and shoes are permeated by perma-sweat-stink, and the Garmin is all clogged with dried salt?

  11. This is awesome. I crack up when I see people with all that shit hanging off them. Don’t get me wrong, I love gear — good pants are essential for winter running in South Dakota. But I hate all the ipod, smartphone, headphone, GPS crap. Especially during a race. Do you really need a GPS on — the course is marked. Do you really need headphones when surrounded by other runners? And do you really need compression socks, you in the back?

  12. If you think they’re big now, wait til you start pumping for that little one to go to day care. Damn. And you’re husband will still be pissed he isn’t getting any of it.

    I run pretty much on the cheap. Wearing the fivefingers right now and wearing some old free tee shirt (generally from Old Chicago’s after completing a mini-tour, CHA-CHING, two birds, one stone). I wear basketball shorts, which also serve a dual purpose as pregnant/post-pregnant lady jammies. Awesome. After all that, I don’t carry shit. I drink a big ole glass of tap water I threw in the fridge with ice before I left. As I drink my water, I generally water the herbs (which then generally feed me).

    Snoogins Marie. You must be getting close and uncomfortable. Enjoy the stress of when little buggy finally wants to make an appearance. We’re pulling for you to make it through alive.

    • The good news is, I have no ambition or work ethic, so I’m perfectly fine running on autopilot and letting people do stuff for me whenever possible.

      And I may or may not already be pushing max capacity on the husband’s basketball shorts. :/

      • just stopped by your blog via the angry runner link- you are quite right that some people know how to turn a relatively cheap sport like running into a rather extravagant hobby with all that unnecessary gear. I’m old an old school runner but do enjoy my lulu vice every now and again – if that is the gomi forum you are referring to – I read it too. I don’t know how people run with all that crap attached to their bodies. I wrote a similar posts on gadgetoholics awhile back.

      • YES! I love my high-dollar gear as much as the next girl, I just think it can be a crutch if you rely on it for every run.

        And I’m headed over to check out your blog now.. =D

  13. Pingback: Race week thoughts | Cheaper Than Therapy

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