These are Under Armor Steph Curry basketball shoes.
They are bad. Real bad. Not bad in a good way. Bad in a bad way. Bad bad. They have been roasted on Twitter for looking exactly like the style of shoes old people wear to do mall walking.
And let’s talk about that for a moment. One can hardly argue that mall walking is bad for elderly people. But we can also talk about the lifestyles that lead to mall walking. Do we honestly have to stop running, riding and swimming as we age? No, we do not. Granted, not everyone can run, ride or swim their way to healthy aging. However, you can also tell the difference in people who never try.
This is a delicate topic I know. Everyone deserves encouragement for taking their personal health and fitness goals seriously. I once managed a Sports Complex where all types of runners and walkers came to do their laps in the winter months. I set up programs for all these people and shared advice to help them find success. We were the site of choice for heart rehabilitation centers for the regional hospital. Heart disease is a serious damn issue. It runs in my own family and millions of others.
Watching those heart patients walk their way back to wellness was, in its way, quite inspiring. So I’m no snob about all this. On a regular basis I have conversations with people who tell me they cannot run, only walk. Many share news of bad knees or hips. And you know what I say? “Walking is the best exercise of all, they say.”
Walking it back
There have been times in my career when walking was the only alternative I had for exercise. A torn ACL required months of rehabilitation. During the first few months following the surgery it was a significant triumph just to be able to walk the three miles to the riverfront and back. It still stung to straighten my left leg. My right leg bore the weight and the Achilles on that side got sore. It was tough going.
Eventually, it got better, and I started to run a little bit at a time. I wanted to run again because I love it, and always have. Plus I was not yet willing to be “that guy” that cannot run. Not yet. Not so early in life. Not in my forties. Perhaps not ever.
Riding through life
The same goes with the bike. You know, there are bikes that are effectively the equivalent of those Steph Curry “dad” shoes. Bikes designed only for comfort, not speed. And I’m not going to say anything bad about people who better themselves by riding those bikes.
There are also people who ride perfectly fast bikes, but choose to go really slowly. And to them I also say, more power to you. That mirror on your helmet probably works swell. But I am not ready to be that guy. I still want to race. I like to race.
Run. Ride. Swim. As fast as I can.
Not giving up
And do not want to go around wearing shoes that look like I’ve given up on doing any of those things. Shoes that say I’m reduced to walking. Maybe someday, that will be fine. But not now.
Now I still compete and enjoy it. I’m still faster than all but the top people in most race, finishing in the top 20 and even the top 10 overall. And while there are still a few pounds I hope and plan to shed this summer (still) I’m happy that guy in the mirror can look back and say “Go for it.”
Conquering fears one at a time
Sure, I’ve got my trepidations about my first real open water swim this weekend. I haven’t practiced enough yet to be confident in how it will go for 750 meters. A part of me says I should “Do the Duathlon” until success in swimming all 750 meters is achieved in practice. That’s the prudent, more conservative approach perhaps. It’s all part of the process making these decisions. There is no shame in building confidence or testing yourself… before the real test …is a wise way to go. But a part of me says “Just Do It” and the fears will crumble. So we’ll see.
No thanks to Sansabelt pants
I’d rather have a bit of manufactured fear than live in fear that my Sansabelt pants are going to explode in public. And I’m not going to wear Steph Curry “dad” sneakers and go doddering around in public.
So maybe yes, I’m a form of snob, and perhaps a total prick. But you know what? We all have our standards. I’m no better or worse that all those people on Twitter who think Steph Curry’s “dad” shoes are for losers, and proven right when the Cavs, not the Golden State Warriors with their regular season record of 73-9 who won the NBA Finals. Lebron James was not wearing “dad” shoes.
So excuse me while I go run. And ride. And swim. In anything but shoes that look like dad shoes.
BE ORIGINAL. SHOW RESPECT. BUT NOT FOR THOSE SHOES.