The Cost of Running

When I first started running way back in 2009 (2008?) It was purely because I needed to lose the weight I had gained during my pregnancy with Caylee (and Lexi) and we had no money for a gym membership. Running was free. Slip on some old clothes, some sneakers and get out on the road.  I hated running. I had NO intentions of running in a race of any sort.  I had no desire to buy fancy "running clothes" or even good shoes. My new balance sneakers were ok and worked fine.

At some point in late winter/early spring of 2009 the running bug hit me a little. I decided (mostly because my sister ran) that I'd run a race. I thought a 10K would be a good challenge, but I found an 8K close by that looked good enough for me.  I started training. I had never run 5 miles before and didn't know if I'd make it. My sister decided to run with me, she flew down from Maine to run my first race.  I enjoyed having her with me because I knew NOTHING about racing. I had no clue that you'd get caught up in the gun fire and take off at speeds you never dreamed of, only to make it half a mile and die. Luckily she was there to keep me running when I wanted to walk.  I finished my 8K in 48 minutes or something like that. I was just glad I was done. I never wanted to run again.

Almost  a year later I decided I needed to lose weight. We were going to a church where there was a huge group of young married people who ran marathons, half marathons, triathlons, even iron man competitions.  I thought I'd try  my hand at running again. I asked for advice. They all said the same thing "just sign up for a race, pay for it, and you'll have to train because you've already sunk your money into it". I got a little caught up in the moment and decided a half marathon would be fun. 13.1 miles. Sure, I can do it. I found one and signed up. I thought we'd make a vacation out of it and decided Virginia beach would be fun. After all, the race was one of the cheapest I found (Dismal Swamp Stomp) and started training. It was crazy to me to think I paid $40 to run. (Now I realize that $40 for a half marathon is CHEAP). The first week of my training I had to run 5 miles. I knew there was no way I was going to be able to run it. I could just barely do 3, and it took me a month to get to 3. Much to my surprise I ran the whole 5 miles. 

I still wasn't going to buy fancy running clothes. My knees were hurting though and I had to buy some better shoes. I got sticker price right away. $100 for a pair of sneakers that will only last me 6 months? YAH RIght. I did it though. $100 was cheaper than knee surgery.  By the time my race had come around I had lost 30lbs. my clothes were all falling off of me, I broke down and bought a few running shirts from Target and a pair of capri's from old navy. It felt good to have clothes that fit and were made for running. I was starting to see how running could be expensive.

By the time I finished my race I was in love with running. I was planning on taking a few weeks off and then found out I was pregnant and ended up taking about 9 months off. I could not wait to get the all clear from the doctor saying I could run again after he was born. I got the all clear, started running and had all sorts of knee problems. I ended up having to wait about 3 more months before I could start up full force.

Now I am about 6 months into my running, I had to buy a new pair of shoes, but found a pair that were discontinued for less than half the price.  I'm down about 40lbs from my "normal" weight, and about 10lbs from where I was when I got pregnant with Josiah. I've had to break down and buy a pair of running capris too. I could have easily got caught up in the cute running clothes this time around had we had extra money. I run with group of women and the pressure to look cute while running is stronger than when you run alone.

The main cost of running that I've noticed is races. I haven't run a ton, and the ones I've run have been cheap ones, but it's hard to find races (5K's) under $20. So it would be easy to spend a lot of money on running. I try to keep it on the cheap side, but it's still money being spent.

Aside from the monetary cost there's also the time cost. It either takes away from my sleeping time or my family time for me to go run. I think that it is good for me to get out and run though because it's a good stress relief for me. I am a much happier mommy when I run. It also cost me almost 40lbs. but I don't care about that cost! :)