Well, the time has finally come to say a fond farewell to my first ever pair of proper running shoes. No more will we pound the roads of North Berwick together. No more splashing in rock pools, tip toeing through the tulips, no more dark o'clock trots round the streets. It is time to say goodbye, farewell, adieu.
It might sound nuts, but I've got really attached to my running shoes. I bought them last September in Leeds (town of my youth) at UpandRunning, it seems like yesterday. I was so excited and trepidatious walking into a shop for proper runners (another first for me) and having the audacity to try on running shoes. I was like a teenager, trying to sound like I knew everything there was to know about running. Ha! wasn't I the seasoned runner, with many miles under my belt??!! Yes, well, we'll draw a veil over that one. I don't think I convinced anyone in the shop, but at least I didn't fall off the running machine when I did the gait test!
As a woman who loves shoes, I fell in love with my runners (Brooks Ghost if you're interested) the moment I put them on and wriggled my toes. We were made for each other and that was that. Over the last 9 months, they have taken me over hills, along beaches, on streets and parks. We did our first half marathon and 10K and Race for Life together. They've been with me on the treadmill and have even come spinning sometimes. But now their running days are done, they don't have the miles in them for what comes next. With the possibility of a marathon next year, it was time to get new shoes to take me into the long runs ahead.
My old shoes officially retired at Race for Life. But there's life in the old trainers yet. Like a fine race horse who's had their last Grand National, they will come out for short runs and maybe to the gym, but their racing days are over.
As in life, when we say farewell in one area, we find ourselves also saying hello to something new. When I bought me new running shoes (Asics, very nice and comfy), I didn't feel that excitement that I did the first time, but I did feel like a runner buying runner shoes. I know what my gait is, I know how I feel when I run fast or slow or long. I realised I'd moved on and that there will be more new shoes in future, I might even have two pairs of shoes, who knows. It feels a bit strange, odd and new, but also exciting.
Today a week after race for life, me and the new running shoes are going to have our first run in North Berwick. Not sure where yet, or how long. So, here's to the very special first times, but also to where they take us - to other amazing first times - the future.