I am confident I wouldn't have been a runner had it not been for my friend, Carin, who I ran with in college. She just casually invited on a seven-mile route, even though I'd only ever run three, with a tone that made me believe I could add on four more miles. And I wouldn't have kept running, post-college, in New York City had it not been for my friend Daniel, who accompanied me on many outings up and down Riverside Drive. And I wouldn't have run the New York City Marathon had I not got a dose of confidence from pal Kathy, who just makes things happen. And I wouldn't have run my second marathon if I hadn't met my sole sister Katherine in Colorado Springs. And, and, and...I'll end this run on paragraph now.
But I am far from the only one who marks their running and races by the friendships developed through them; best running friends (BRFs) rank up there with a sports bra, a running stroller and a treadmill as necessities for mother runners. They keep us accountable; they make us laugh; they know when to keep quiet; they fall into rhythm with us; they sympathize and empathize and give us reality checks and make us realize that somebody outside our nuclear families has our backs. Plus, they agree to wear matching striped socks for a race outfit.
So during this season of giving thanks and being grateful, we are going to do a week-long tribute to BRFs in the form of a giveaway. Each day, we will be giving away six items--affordable, cute stuff that you'd give a BRF for real--in pairs: the idea is that the three random winners keep one prize for themselves, and give one to their BRF.
I know some of you are rolling your eyes and saying--or bemoaning--but I don't haaaaave a BRF. If you don't have a BRF and you win, gift your prize to a teacher who happens to be a runner or a friend you used to run with before she moved or your friend you want to get into running...you get the idea. Or, be bold and go up to the woman you've always wanted to run with, give her the present and the story behind it, and ask her to run. We're betting she'll take the bait.
We'll start this BRF week from the ground up. We've had a number of questions on our Facebook page about what socks to wear in winter. The answer is wool socks. Wool socks that keep you warm and dry at the same time. Wool socks like these Ibex beauties: low cut merino wool socks that feel impossibly soft but are workhorses: they keep your feet toasty without being hot and wick away sweat faster that you make it. Seriously.
So we'll ship three packages with two pairs of socks to three random winners; we're operating on faith that you'll give or send the second pair to somebody who is somehow related to your running life.
In order to enter, you need to, of course, answer a question. We'll keep this entry simple: who is your BRF? If you don't currently have one, who would you gift the second pair of socks to?