Well… technically, I’m not famous. But let’s not get distracted!
Every runner, hiker, or otherwise outdoorsy person has been there. You have a great pair of go-to shoes you’ve been using for years. Then one day, you notice you can feel every rock you step on through the soles.
You realise with an aching heart that it’s time to part ways with a pair of shoes that has likely accompanied you on some of the best adventures of your life.
Well, here I am. But before I toss my famous pair of shoes into the trash, let me give it a proper sending off by covering some of the many accomplishments it’s enjoyed since the early summer of 2014.
My First Charity Run
I first bought my shoes to train for, and then attend, the CUMI Run event in 2014. I’ll admit, when I first signed up, it wasn’t for charity. It was for health reasons. I had stacked on 10 pounds and figured running with my coworkers for a company-sponsored event might be a great way to shed them.
We met up at 5:30 AM every Saturday morning for months, to do our training. The week before the race, I also started training with a Taekwondo black-stripe-belt; running up a set of steps in the city, so steep that few people bothered to use it.
I’ve participated in quite a few 5K runs since then; including the Guardian Life Keep it Alive Night Run in Jamaica, and the Color Run in Atlanta, GA.
Featured in NBC News
In fact, my participation in the Color Run in Georgia got a bit of exposure in the national media. Or… maybe it was just my shoes.
The editors have since removed Instagram posts from the article, but luckily I had taken a screenshot at the time and can prove that for a wonderful few months, my pair of shoes was famous.
The writer had hundreds of pictures to choose from – pictures of my family, friends, scenery. And what did they publish with my quote? A picture of my shoes doused in coloured powder, at Color Run 2016.
Not a bad way to go out, eh?
My First Hiking Injury
Though my shoes started out with a focus on running, on arrival in the U.S., hiking became our new favourite thing. Salt Springs State Park in the summer of 2015 was my very first hiking trip in the U.S.
As far as starter-trips go, this one was brutal, with drop-offs to the side, a bit of climbing, lots of bugs, and the threat of bears and snakes. I ended this trip being stung by a hornet. My foot swelled up so badly I couldn’t wear my famous pair of shoes for a few weeks.
Totally worth it.
Hiking Up Kennesaw Mountain
I soon learned, however, that there’s hiking — and then there’s hiking uphill. My first time tackling altitude was at Kennesaw Mountain in Georgia — albeit child’s play compared to Lone Mountain in Vegas.
You can tell how long ago this was by how unbelievably short my hair is!
Trekking through the Desert
Georgia trails are beautiful, but after the rough start I had in Pennsylvania, I longed for a bit more adventure.
I’ve been in and out of the U.S. since 1999. My trips mostly took me up and down the east coast, and later, into the Mid-West. After following one-too-many travel blogs and talking to a few westerners, however, I decided out west is where I would find my proper dose of adventure.
That decision brought me to the deserts in Colorado, California, and Nevada just this year alone. Those trips were so amazing, that I’m planning to see Utah next year, despite my absolute fear of being a minority in the super-conservative middle-of-nowheres of America.
Wish us luck?
A New Era
In short, my shoes has lived with me in 2 countries, and seen 13 of the 20 U.S. states I’ve visited. How’s that for an eventful life?
But needless to say, an outdoorsy girl like myself wouldn’t dare toss out the well-worn pair of shoes without first ensuring she has a replacement. As it turns out, I now have two.
The one on the left is a birthday present to myself. The one on the right is a birthday present from my Mom.
I only have one problem. Now, I have no idea which one to bring with me on my very first trip to New England, this Monday!
What material things have you owned that have earned sentimental value by accompanying you through some of the most iconic moments in your life? What was it like when you finally had to toss it out?
P.S. >>> Happy Friday the 13th!