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I ran 7 miles this morning with my friend Amy. I rarely run with anyone because I don’t generally have the time to synch up with people, but it’s amazing how fast the time goes by when you’re chatting away about your kids, training, injuries and the next big event – which for us will be Moab. We ran on one of her favorite trails, McIntosh Lake in North Longmont. Nice route, it’s a 3.5 mile loop about half trail and half sidewalk.

Now, you know I like gadgets as much as the next guy. But apparently not as much as this girl. Amy has it all. She wore this killer wind jacket – it was so light – made by Pearl Izumi. I could have used that for the IPR last fall where jackets, gloves and hats were pre-requisites for lining up in the corral. The weather was just cold enough for a light jacket. I got by with a single layer compression jersey, but the wind picked up before we were done and dressing any lighter would have become uncomfortable.

Of course, Amy had a top-of-the-line Garmin GPS sportswatch. This thing knew our distance and would have told us what we had for breakfast if we were interested. Now the next piece of gear might surprise you. She wore patella knee straps. I’m not sure what brand but they could either be ProCare, Bioskin or Breg based on the pictures at this gear catalog website. Amy has had knee surgery and swears by these straps. The last gear of significant note would be her compression shin socks – not the full socks which I understand you can also buy. I like my compression tops and tights, so I have no doubt those things feel good. The theory is they help with circulation to avoid cramps. She also wore some good looking Mizuno shoes which I heard are among the lightest on the market; and she had this cool running long sleeve top – not sure the brand – that had holes to hook her thumbs through to act like partial gloves. Perfect for today when the temperature was such that many other runners on the trail were in fact wearing gloves – but it was too warm for me.

Running with Amy this morning was a wake-up call. Before we run the Canyonlands Half Marathon later this month, I need to gear up. High altitude running in the desert could be tricky. It’ll likely start out fairly cool but warm-up dramatically. I’ll want light and efficient gear. I want what Amy has, but in more masculine colors.