Can Trail Running Develop into an Unhealthy Addiction?
Trail running can definitely develop into an unhealthy addiction. But what couldn’t turn into an unhealthy addiction? There are probably a few souls out there who are addicted to doing the laundry and taking hits of Downy off of quarters. To me, the question is more of what other addictions can be spawned by trail running.
Running is supposed to be a cheap sport because the only equipment truly needed is your body and a surface to slap your feet against repeatedly. Then all of the wants come as one gets deeper into the sport. “Ooh, I want this hydration pack. That pair of shorts won’t chafe my buttcheeks. Minimalist shoes are totally in right now. Oh mylanta, she’s wearing a cotton shirt – such a fashion faux pas.” It’s easy to get swept up into the material wants instead of remembering why you started running in the first place. Online shopping feeds the habit with its ease and instant gratification.
Explosions of Information
To decide on what gear or apparel to try or buy next, a lot of research goes into determining best prices and finding reviews. We live in an age of information overload. It’s so readily available, but the ratio of quantity to consumption is overwhelming. Currently I have a backlog of nonrunning-related books that I want to read, but I compulsively go back to reading articles about running and spouting off what I’ve learned to whomever will listen. A lot of people just smile and nod at me now. This obsession also leads down the bunny trail of blogs from runners and filling your
Google Reader blog aggregator to the brim. Retention of such immense amounts of information can lead to explosions on unsuspecting victims.
So Many Races, So Little Time
When you read through these articles and blogs, you’re introduced to all of the races and venues around the globe. It’s mesmerizing, and schemes are brainstormed to attend all of these races at least once. Your checking account shudders at the upcoming blood loss. Your finger nearly breaks the F5 key on opening day of registration to get a coveted spot. Boom! You’ve landed a spot, you race, and then your body comes down off of the high. Then the the cycle repeats. If you can’t get into races, you
sell your body donate time to aid stations, check-ins, merchandise set-up, and generally being an extra hand or set of legs. One way or another, you’re going to get your fix from either abusing your body on the course or being at the mercy of the athletes in the race.
But in the end which is worse – an addiction to trail running or having these offsprings of that addiction?