It would be understandable if you hadn't heard of it. After all, no one is talking about. nuun-one.
Obviously, we both know that's a lie. The blogosphere has been alive for weeks with chatter about HTC and the three (count them 1-2-3) teams that nuun is sponsoring. To be eligible, you had to be female and a blogger. Just like me.
I was all over it, the mania. The idea of running the race - and running it with women I've read for years - consumed me. I began to work in an excited fury on a concept for my application, compiling photos and figuring out technical things. I even purchased a whistle.
And then reality hit, like a checkbook to the head.
Don't get me wrong. Mark and I are not poor or disparate. We are your average couple who manage to make things work. We have two jobs, eat out, enjoy life as we manage two car payments, two sets of student loans, child care, diapers, formula.
There are good months and bad months, of course. Last month was a bad month. We realized that we couldn't just spend here and spend there and accomplish our financial goals. We were going to have to tighten the reins.
- The grocery budget was going to go from $100 a week to $80.
- Monthly allowance was going to be cut $20 per person.
- We would negotiate (successfully) a lower rate on Internet (we don't have cable).
- Once we're out of contract, we'll eliminate data plans on our phones.
- Entertainment money (i.e. dinners out) would be cut $15 a week.
- And, finally, we would have to cut the amount of money I spent on racing.
There's no denying it: Running races can be expensive. Let's look at my upcoming Martian half-marathon.
Entry fee: $50
Cheap a$$ hotel, 15 minutes from the race: $50
Kennel, to board Denali: $30
Post-race M&Ms: $1
Without even blinking, Mark and I will spend close to $200 - the amount of money we'd like to, at minimum, put in savings each month (and thus, are cutting the budget by). This is a race semi-close to us -- nothing like Hood to Coast. And while nuun covers a lot of the cost, there's still airfare, Gu, parking at the airport, airport food (my favorite, seriously) ... and well, you get the picture. I would be spending $400 or more to run a race that seems so free. If I got picked, of course.
So when Mark and I looked over our budget, it was easy to see that I shouldn't put myself in that position - the position of getting picked. I quickly deleted the files I had started for my application and cleared my browser history so I couldn't see the link for the application info. I stopped reading blog posts about the race and resisted the urge to click on twitter links for applications. I tried to eliminate it from my thoughts.
Obviously it didn't work. And so today, the deadline, is a bit bittersweet. It would be nice to apply, to be picked and to run. But, it's nicer to know that I'm doing what's right for me and my family.
I don't tell you this in a "Let's all feel bad for Kim" sort of way. I tell you this in a "Let's be real" sort of way. I think it's so easy to feel like you have to do this race and then this race when you read lots of blogs. It's easy to feel left out when you can't do it or feel jealous when you see people dropping serious cash on Disney marathons or feel like it's all so out of reach.
Someone needs to say it's OK not to do it. It's OK not to join the hoopla because, what really matters, is the run. And all I need to run is me (and my Nikes, an old pair of shorts and a tank).