Wednesday, July 20, 2011

New Running Gear

I bought some new running jackets, shoes, and a running skirt.
On July 3, I went to Dick's to use my $10 gift card that I got in my race packet for the Pittsburgh Marathon. I was debating so many things and ended up with the skirt that was on clearance. I actually thought I was buying shorts. I like spandex shorts with shots over them.  A skirt is good too though. I spent $1.23. The shorts were about $30 originally.  I ran in them later and the spandex was really nice. Sometimes the spandex pulls and rides up but these didn't. Totally worth the $1.23. They aren't that pretty with the green but I feel like half the goal of running gear is to be loud and obnoxious.
On July 3, when I was at Dick's, I was debating this jacket.  All winter I said I needed a good water proof jacket. I was indecisive about this one.  It was only sale for $100 and then an additional 25% off but I just wasn't sure. It fit good but I didn't know how well it'd fit with lots of layers underneath or even if I'd need lots of layers. It is also more stiff than I was expecting but then I thought maybe waterproof jackets are like that.  I've never had one so I don't know.   Well after I came in 2nd in my age group and got $40 worth of gift cards I went back.  On July 8, all the clearance stuff was 50% off.  The jacket was now $50. I still spent some time debating it. I had a total of $50 in gift cards. Well, I finally took the plunge and got it. I figured I wouldn't get a good deal like that later. (While in line, the lady paying at the other register was buying the same coat. Maybe they are good.)  If I pretend my gift card was used for the same percentage on each jacket this cost me $8.89.
On July 8, I had $50 in gift cards and the green jacket was slightly less. I decided to get a different style running jacket.  It was less than $13.  If I pretend my gift card was used for the same percentage on each jacket this cost me $2.27. It is a medium. The small fit but I thought if I layer up, I might want it looser.  Does anyone know why there is netting over the entire inside of the jacket?
Well after I bought my jackets, I was off to Costco. What do you know... I find a nice inexpensive jacket. It has sleeve holes for my thumb and you can fold over the cuff to cover your hand.... and the sleeve was long enough for me. I had to get one.  I got it for $12.97.  They had 3 pretty colors + black but the only nice color in my size was this blue.
After buying all my jackets, I was off to buy new shoes. I went to Second Sole. It now has a sign outside that says Mojo but all the stuff inside still says Second Sole.  I ended up with the same shoes I got last time but the newer model. If you go to Mojo, you can try on shoes then go outside and run in them to see how you like them. A lady was there trying on about 20 different pairs and she went outside to run in all the ones she tried on when I was there.  We get a 10% discount there because of working at Westinghouse.  Therefore my shoes were $90.  If I knew I was going to get the same shoes with a different model, I may have just ordered them online. I wanted to try on a few other shoes. They only had 2 in my size. But they watched how I walk and told me I would need the support that the Brooks offers. I believe them. I tried on the 2nd pair of shoes in my size and they felt very weird so I'll just stick with what I know.  I just googled them and lots of online places sell them for $100 too so my deal wasn't bad. I did notice most other versions have white laces. They have multiple colors for this version. I didn't know there was a choice. Oh well.  Purple is my favorite color anyway. I really like how these look. I am almost thinking of buying a second pair now because they fit my ankles better than the Adrenaline 10 or 9.  I could get a different color for my second version so then I can swap out for variety. Or I can just wait.  I have to swap my orthotics into different shoes so it makes it more difficult to have more than one pair of shoes for working out.

I feel like I got a lot of good deals. (The gift cards also helped.)

How do you go about buying running shoes? Do you buy the same brand/model each time? Do you switch it up? How many miles do you put on your shoes before buying new ones? How do you go about buying workout clothes? Do you favor certain brands or go for the deals? 


  1. Good haul! There's nothing quite like getting a good bargain, is there? Love the jackets, and I think you're going to be very happy with the North Face jacket when foul weather hits. I bought one something like it ( at Athleta a few weeks ago. You can't really tell from the photos on their website, but it also has a similar stiffness, which I think may be intended to protect you from the wind and repel rainwater. I've been very happy with it thus far in the cold wind and fog we've been having. It also has netting on the inside (to vent moisture maybe?) and the long cuffs with thumbholes, which have really grown on me. I bought another zip jacket a few months ago from Gap Body ( with the long cuffs and thumbholes. It's been a while since I bought new running clothes, so it was the first time I had encountered this. At first I thought it was unnecessary, but then found I really liked them for cold early morning runs. I even abandoned my fingerless gloves!

    I'll be curious to hear what you think of the running skirt when you put it to the test. I see a lot of women running in them in San Francisco, and they seem to have a lot of fans on the Runners World website.

    Funny--I run in Brooks Adrenaline GTS shoes too, and have for many years. There was one year when I had an ugly pair of New Balance shoes that were super-comfortable, but when it came time to replace them, the newer (and more attractive) upgraded version didn't feel quite right with my orthotics. I tried a pair of Asics instead, but eventually wound up returning to my beloved Brooks. I just replaced my last pair with the GTS 11 over the July 4th weekend. Mine are the blue/white/silver? ones, with white laces.

  2. I'm terrible about replacing my running shoes as often as they say you should, and I think it had been well over a year since my last pair when I bought the GTS 11. But I could feel the old pair was getting a little too malleable. You know how they say you when you can bend the toebox of running shoes backwards, they're wearing out? This was happening with my old pair. And since I was increasing my mileage, I knew I'd better replace them before I got into trouble. I once pushed the envelope too long on replacing a pair and wound up with a tendinitis injury in my foot that had me out of commission for several weeks.

    I usually try to go to a shoe store that caters specifically to runners when it's time to replace my shoes--someplace staffed by people who know know when you're overpronating and which shoe is right to address that need and accommodate your orthotics, if you have them. We're lucky to have a couple of these stores in SF, and this time around, I went to See Jane Run. It was a good experience, and I also found out they have a running group on Tuesday nights, which would be great if I could just leave work early enough to get over to that neighborhood in time. Though I like a good bargain, I've found that Brooks' price stays pretty consistent at around $100 for the Adrenaline GTS, which I think is fairly reasonable when other lines are creeping above the $150 range. I once tried to save a few bucks by buying an older model of Adrenaline GTS shoes from Amazon, but that particular pair always felt a little odd, and I wonder if it was defective somehow. So my personal rule became, "Go try them on at a local shoe store that caters to runners."

    As for workout clothes, it's a mixture. Sometimes I'll go try them on in the store before I buy (like the Gap and Athleta jackets), and sometimes I'll order something from online (which sometimes has the advantage of a video showing how the item fits). I took a risk recently on a pair of Asics running shorts on sale at Zappos, knowing Zappos has a pretty liberal return policy. Luckily, the shorts worked out great and passed my deal breaker test: they have a 4-inch inseam and a secure zippered pocket for my keys and ID.

    Whew! Sorry for the long comment. This is what happens when I take a day off from work.

  3. Anita, I did put the skirt to the test. I own 4 running skirts. I like them all, but this one was the best. I think the material is more light weight and the shorts don't ride up my thighs.

    I've had 3 versions of the Brooks. I think over the past 1.5 years. Well the newest pair is only a few weeks into wearing them. The middle pair I had far too long. I had them over a year but at first I wore them in a race and got them all muddy and it took me 2-3 months to clean them so I think I only wore them for 9 months.

  4. That's good to know that a pair you got online felt different. I always thought if I bought the same shoe online it'd fit the same. I know that women's clothing doesn't fit the same way even in the same store and same size and same style but if it's a different color or even if it is not. I always want to try on clothes. I've only ordered 1 pair of running shoes and 2 things from Athleta in addition to stuff from Victoria's Secret online. The rest I buy in stores. I didn't even know Athleta had stores. I only knew about the online site.

    I like long comments. I like them better than regular comment and you know how much I LOVE comments.

  5. Athleta is just venturing into opening stores. Last year they opened one up north in Marin County, and this spring they opened one in San Francisco. It's a really beautiful space, and wouldn't you know it? It's located just over the hill--a mere 8 blocks away--from my old apartment building. It's farther across town from where I live now, which is probably good news for my wallet. When I made a trip over there a month or so ago, I went specifically to try on this Teelicious Wrap from their website, but they didn't carry it in the store. That's how I wound up with the Headwinds jacket instead, which is really lovely in person. Luckily for me and my wallet, the store was about to close for the day, because I couldn't stop picking things up and trying them on. They were even selling this book called Outdoor Fitness by Tina Vindum, a local athlete who conducts these well-regarded fitness workshops. I had to make myself put the book down and order it from Amazon later, rather than pay full price at the Athleta store.

    I'm so glad to hear you're a fan of running skirts! Now that I have your seal of approval, I will definitely have to try one out.

    I know they say you're supposed to replace your running shoes every 500 miles or so, but I just don't feel like I can afford to do so quite that frequently. I usually aim for every 6-8 months, but sometimes I wind up pushing it to a year or beyond. Do you go by mileage when you replace yours or length of time you've been wearing them or just a sense that your current pair is worn out and needs to be replaced?

  6. I like the skirts because sometimes shirts are too open so if you go to stretch someone could see up your shorts. But then I like the skirt because it just looks nicer than spandex.

    I replace shoes based on time and how they look. I don't go by miles because I wear them for all kinds of stuff.