Sunday, January 20, 2013

Racing Smart and Saving Cash...

I smoked for over 10 years. And I tried to quit more than a few times. The last time it finally stuck. It was a miserable thing, quitting smoking. But I'm also a very "thrifty" gal. And by thrifty I mean OH MY GOD I HATE TO WASTE MONEY!!!!! I buy generic, used clothes, save up for almost 10 years to buy a car... I'm cheap. That would be an understatement. So, when quitting smoking finally started to stick I did the ol save the money you would have been spending on cigarettes trick. I didn't really SAVE the money, I just wrote down on a calender how much money I was saving. It was nice in theory, but numbers on a calender are just that.
When I trained for my first half marathon I paid myself a dollar for every mile I ran during training. My first half seemed almost undoable, so having some fun spending money at the end was a cool motivator. And this was not just numbers on a calender. This was cold hard cash in an envelope. I can still remember packing the money away and having a visible reminder of my miles on the road. By the time I paid myself the big 13 dollars for race I had a fun amount of money to spend on ME! The tightwad in my wanted to put the money right into a savings account. But, I had planned this as a way to reward myself, not just save more money. I bought a funny race picture and my first cold weather running gear. It was a big deal.
So here I am 5 years later and I made this plan for 2013 to consider what races I might run a little more seriously. Last year I got caught up in flurry of "everyone is running this race! DO IT" and "it's a great price. Buy NOW!" It was like I was caught in an infomercial for all races. And I bought EVERY product that was being sold! Some of it was awesome. Surprise races that I never thought I would do. Part of it was misery. Races I registered for, for all the wrong reasons. And I spent a fortune.
I'm trying to think a little more this year. Let the surprises still come, but don't always get caught up in the hoopla. And I know it's only late January... but I've already NOT signed up for two races! Would they be fun? I'm sure. Awesome? Maybe. But they aren't screaming at me to do them. I don't feel that gotta do it feeling. So I passed. And guess what! I've already saved $75.00!!! HOLY CRAP! I don't think I'll put the money in a little yellow envelope, but I feel like I made some good choices for me. The trick is to not let the crazy cheap girl in me run wild with this. I don't want to skip all races just to save money... but then again.... I saved $75.00! What to do, what to do...

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