I am sure I am in the minority with this view, but I am getting sick of these technical shirts that you get at races...there has got to be alternatives.... I keep all my running stuff in a big laundry basket by my running shoes...It was a little chilly this morning so I was looking for something a little more stout to wear, and I started noticing all these unused race shirts...most don't get worn because they are cheap or ugly, or are billboards....and if you run more than a few races a year for a number of years, you start build up a collection of these unused shirts... I am guessing that a lot of runners BUY the stuff they want to wear running, because everyone has individual tastes on look, colors, fabric, sizing, etc....I don't think a lot of people are entering races in order to get running shirts! So why am I bringing this up? Most races go to support charitable causes, and I think these shirts at all these races are taking money away from the causes the races are trying to support...if $10 of the fee is going to buy the shirt(I don't know the cost, just a hypothetical #), that is $10 less for the charitable cause, and if you did that at a bigger race like Chicago or NY, that adds up to thousands of dollars not going to charity...seems like a waste to me... Also, entry fees are on the rise dramitically, having the option to not get a shirt and pay a reduced fee should be an option at these races...If I knew I could get a reduced rate of 10 or 15 or 20 dollars and forego the shirt, I would do it all the time... I remember running a trail half marathon a few years that was going to support the non-profit organization that maintained the trail, they had one price if you wanted a shirt, a reduced price if you didn't want the shirt, or you could pay the price of getting the shirt but not get one with the extra money going to the organization...wow I thought, that is smart... I am sure some people want some momento of the race and I understand that(i.e. that is what the medals are for!)...but when I ran Boston, you got a so-so looking long sleeve tech shirt...which I never wear because I don't like looks/fabric...however I did buy a lot of Adidas stuff at the race that had Boston stuff on it which I wear a lot. I wear the stuff I bought because I wanted it!
So any race directors out there, consider trying something different! Or at least try a non-shirt - I don't know, maybe a mug, hat, gloves, belt buckle, free beer, who knows....You can still make money selling me stuff, just give me the option of not taking your cheap ugly shirts! (and yes I know I can just not pick up the shirt or not run the race, but if you pay $100 and up at some of these events, you might as well take what you paid for...maybe that makes me more wasteful, I don't know) I don't run these races for the shirts, I run for the enjoyment and challenge...and a bad shirt has never made me stray away from a race, but look in your closet if you have been running more than a few years, it's a waste! Just my two cents worth... (and yes there are a few things I have gotten at races that I like or use, but not many...)
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