Steve B showed up for his first day of running training in a combination of beer swag and cycling gear and in his winter boots. To his stubborn credit he never complained about it, but we knew that if he was going to run 21.1 this spring, he needed a winter-spring running wardrobe – like, STAT.
We reached out to the Ottawa Running’s Phil Marsh. In addition to some cool credentials like training MPs and having the first-ever weekly radio show about running in Canada, Phil also does stuff I personally admire, like guiding visually impaired runners. Phil said he could help get Steve set up with the basics, made the drive in to the big city of Ottawa for some advice.
We arrived at The Running Room with armfuls of Beau’s beer (the international language of friendship), and Phil gave Steve the old once-over.
PHIL: So, what are you running in now?
STEVE: These. (Points down at winter boots)
PHIL: (Shocked silence).
PHIL: Um. OK, well when we get you in a pair of running shoes, you are going to see a huge difference!
Phil got Steve to do a few things like walking, squatting, and running on a treadmill to check on the usual concerns, and then helped suggest some warm-yet-breathable gear that would be versatile for the kooky whimsy of an Eastern Ontario winter and spring.
Steve opted for shoes that would be OK for indoors and out, and a few layers to mix in with his existing array of sporty-type clothes – a jacket that could be worn with a shell, and pants that could be worn with a warmer layer over if required. Phil told us we could MacGyver our running shoes with duct tape if we wanted to block the cold wind. We also talked about a hydration strategy (and checked out some options) and grabbed a few gels to start working into training later this spring.
Steve was pretty pumped to get out with the gear on, and Phil was right – he instantly shaved a huge swath off his km per min on the next run out. Turns out they are called running shoes for a reason! We are hoping our new buddy Phil Marsh will come out to Vankleek Hill so we can teach him ALL about the finer points of drinking Beau’s beer.
That same week Steve also learned the importance of clipping his toenails before a run, and what a snot rocket was. But I’m not going to share any pictures of those. Instead, here’s us drinking beer after bagging 8K a few days ago.