Chasing 42

Life, the Universe, & Running

Archive for the tag “Black Friday running”

Daily Chase: Vol. 80

Happy Holidays, all! Is it just me, or did Fall suddenly appear? Mind you, this is perhaps the longest I’ve gone between blog posts, and I’m filled with equal parts guilt and contentment. Life has continued to be busy, both professionally, and personally, and it has caused my priorities to shift a certain degree such that more regular musings on my running haven’t necessarily had the same urgency that they once did. I’ve spent the fall continuing to run, but with more frequent, shorter runs to accumulate the mileage and keep my streak alive. I may not have been able to commit myself to the intensity of training I would have liked over the past few months, but the miles have been consistent, and the joy of running continues to fuel my movement. The daily chase is real, and the motivation to continue chasing 42 is as strong as ever. Have you thought much about the changing periods in your own life, and the impact that has on your running? Does running mean different things to you at different points in your life? It’s nice to pause and give it some thought. The miles will mean more and the motivation will rejuvenate you no matter where you’re at in your own running journey!

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It was a beautiful morning to #optoutside. 

Chasing42 Log: 20170916- 20171124

Run: So, it’s been two months since my last log. I’ve been running. Each of those days. Consistently. The streak is still alive and now into it’s third year. That’s pretty good, eh? My Fall racing season lacked some of the focus and targeted racing that I’ve had in previous years, but it was enjoyable nonetheless. After Laurel Highlands, I think I thought I had so much time to plan out my Fall season, and I kept putting it off. Eventually, I ran out of time and never managed to find a true A-race like those I’ve had in the past. I wanted to target a 100 mile follow-up, but it just wasn’t in the cards this fall. Perhaps my mind and body needed the rest regardless of my intentions. At any rate, I still managed to experience my first self-supported ultra distance run in the mountains courtesy of the SRT 30-Miler in the Catskills, and I enjoyed a soggy day in the mountains of Virginia during the Mountain Masochist 50-miler.  I wrapped things up with a local non-race I helped play a small part in planning on our home trails in Brandywine Creek State Park, and probably had the most fun I’d had in quite some time in the process! I’ve got my sights set on some exciting adventures next year as well, and I’m hopefully planning far enough in advance to lock them in for the sake of consistent motivation. It might be the off-season now, but the planning never stopped. What do you have your eye on for 2018?

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Baltimore’s Inner Harbor. 

Thought: It’s the day after Thanksgiving, a somewhat misguided holiday that marks the violent theft of native lands from countless tribes, and our consumer-driven society has invented “Black Friday” to encourage rampant consumerism and needless spending. However, it’s also the second year of the #optoutside movement, begun ironically enough by REI. There may be other issues to tackle when it comes to who accesses our national parks and outdoor lands, but I fully support the sentiment and the idea of investing in experiences and opportunities to reconnect with the natural world instead of contributing to its destruction. I’ve thought more about my own history with “Black Friday’ this year as well. I certainly got excited for and participated in the consumerism in previous years, and it felt natural until it didn’t. It’s also caused me to think more about the class and race issues wrapped up in a day dedicated to deep discounts on countless consumer products. In a country where happiness has been erroneously linked to the accumulation of material wealth, this celebration of “stuff” only further serves to entrench those of lower socioeconomic means in a state of perpetual debt for the sake of a short-lived dopamine hit Those with the means to purchase these goods at any time of year are far less concerned with finding deals. By default, these same individuals can more easily brush off the sales and #optoutside. So, I wholeheartedly support the push to #optoutside but I will give more pause before chastising folks who choose to line up in the wee hours of the morning for a store opening. Instead, perhaps we can think about how we can encourage a more diverse swath of the population to #optoutside not just the day after Thanksgiving, but every day, and consider who we can invest in the resources and infrastructure to make that more accessible. Until everyone has the means to #optoutside, there will always be those who settle for the great digital outdoors. #chasing42

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Annapolis at sunrise. 

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Tech Lust & Cyber Monday Sales

I’ve written before about running sans-music, but still needing to track my stats. My Garmin 405 plays a huge part in this obsession. I bought it about 3 years ago, shortly after I started running seriously, and it has been a faithful companion. I love the wireless syncing capability, and it has a small enough profile that I don’t feel like I’m wearing a computer on my wrist! However, the touch-sensitive bezel has always been a bit “touchy”, so to speak. In addition, the battery life has gradually decreased (or have I just gradually upped my distance?). At any rate, the battery no longer lasts for more than 5 hours, and certainly doesn’t stay with me long enough to accurately track an ultra-distance race or training run.

Despite its current shortcomings, I’ve managed with my Garmin 405, but I’ve been doing more and more research for a replacement watch. I consider myself a bit of a technophile, and as such, I spend a lot of time reading technology blogs and other websites, and I stay up-to-date with the latest products. The result is a very specific set of requirements:

1. Long battery life (at least 10 hours, preferably even more)

2. Easy syncing with my computer and online tracking systems (Strava, DailyMile)

3. Compact size- I know it’s not going to be a tiny watch, but I don’t want it weighing me down either!

4. Durability- I want it to have an element of ruggedness so I can trust it won’t fall apart after one fall on the trails

5. Data Customization- I won’t pretend I don’t like the bells and whistles so the more data and more customization I can get, the better!

6. Eye-Catching- I own an iPhone, iPad, and Macbook Pro in large part because of the aesthetic of the hardware and software design, so I want my watch to possess a similar style.

As such, my tech lust is currently directed at the Suunto Ambit. This watch seems to have everything I’m looking for, and all of the reviews I’ve read are incredibly positive. The only downside is the cost. Alas, this means spending some time saving up, but it will assuredly be worth it. Interestingly, but not surprisingly, this watch didn’t find it’s way into any Black Friday or Cyber Monday deals. However, plenty of other running and fitness gear certainly did end up on the receiving end of some deep discounts!

Tech lust at its finest!

In previous years, I’ve enjoyed the hunt for great deals during Black Friday, particularly because I love finding the perfect gift for someone. However, I suppose I’ve mellowed a bit, but I’d much rather sleep in the day after a delicious Thanksgiving meal with friends and family, and sip my coffee in the morning with a good book in hand. This year, I did exactly that.

*Stepping on soapbox

In large part, I also find it a sad comment on our society that stores are opening earlier and earlier, to the point where Thanksgiving can’t even truly be a day to spend with family. This is, of course, disproportionately true for those folks working at these retailers, often without the option to take the day off because they need what little money they are being paid in the first place.

*Stepping off soapbox

Although I don’t enjoy the hunt for deals in brick-and-mortar stores nearly as much anymore, there are more and more deals to be found online. This has given birth to Cyber Monday. With my fellow runners in mind, I’ve pulled together some great deals on running gear of all sorts. For those looking for a gift for the runner in your life, or for some gear to help prepare you for winter running or the next race, there just might be a deal out there for you…in fact, I’m fairly certain! Happy hunting 🙂

14 Essential Holiday Gifts for Runners- Active.com

ZombieRunner- one of my favorite online running stores!

Top Sports and Outdoor Sales

Running Warehouse

TriVillage.com- 20% off most running gear!

DC Rainmaker- great blog overall, with listing of Black Friday sales, many of which are still in effect

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