The Athletic Powerhouse is not known for her love of fashion. Case in point - I'm writing this on Melbourne Cup morning, and I don't have any shoes to match the frock I wanted to wear. I have a secret fear that if Trinny and Susannah do a series in Australia, my friends will dob me in for a makeover.
But I digress.
On my long run this weekend, I debuted my CEP compression socks, which are designed to "maximise power, boost energy, and speed recovery time". They aren't the kind of garment you buy for their looks, but I've got the hot pink ones. So do they count for fashion?
My run was 24ks, a bit ask given that I hadn't run for two weeks, had been sick for most of that time, and hadn't done a long run for three weeks. But, it's only eight weeks till the Run Like Crazy marathon. This is no time to take it slow.
I felt a little self conscious when I first started out in these fellas. They felt good - my muscles were supported really well, but in the warm spring morning in Brisbane, they felt a little hot.
Soon enough though, the pain kicked in and I didn't give my socks a second thought.
About 5ks in, I heard "nice socks" and looked around to see an old bloke that noone in their right mind would take fashion advice from, smiling and giving me a thumbs up. I cringed inwardly. On I ran, to get a few approving smiles and nods from fellow compression sock wearers along the river front at Teneriffe. But then, when I got to the City Botanic Gardens, a second complement from someone I'd rather not have got any attention from whatsoever.
I told myself I wasn't wearing the socks for their looks. It didn't matter what anyone thought. I also contemplated whether I should have just bought the black ones, which may have drawn less attention.
By now the run was becoming really hard. Everything hurt. Although my lower legs, less so. Perhaps it was the socks? My pace dropped to be consistently slower than 7.30 minute pace. I'd run along the river and brought money to allow me to catch a Citycat back to my car. I wasn't ready to bail out just yet though, so on I ploughed.
Before I knew it I was back to the Powerhouse, beyond the last Citycat stop. Although I was regularly stopping to rest a little, I was committed to the full 24k distance.
Just past the Teneriffe Ferry, I passed a couple with a small child. I heard the mother saying "good effort" and presumed she was providing some positive parenting to her offspring. I shuffled on.
She turned towards me as I ran past, "I saw you a couple of hours ago! Great effort!".
I was so surprised, I squealed with joy! I gave her a wave and a thank you.
Long runs often seem lonely, and you quickly become accustomed to anonymity amongst the crowd. As your runs become longer, you become resigned to the fact that you train for yourself, not for anyone else. If you don't run, noone else knows. If you put in the hard yards and run for a few hours, noone else recognises the achievement.
I was delighted with the acknowledgment I got on Saturday. I've thought about it, and all I can put it down to is the hot pink socks.
Still, as distinctive as they are, I don't think CEPs count as fashion.