Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Opportunity Cost: Workout Clothes and Street Clothes

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I didn't come away from the three economics courses I took in college with anything except an embarrassing memory of the time Edith Piaf started playing from my phone at an ear-piercing volume during a lecture on command economies. I was really terrible at manipulating supply and demand graphs, and I once tried to dilute the economic content of a presentation with pictures of Steve Jobs and dizzying PowerPoint graphics. I did, however, grasp the notion of opportunity cost, a concept that can be applied to basically every decision you make. For instance, I gave up watching an episode of Mind of a Chef to write this blog post. And for the purpose of where this post is headed: I give up buying nice workout clothes for actual street clothes.

I never really took notice of how shitty my workout clothes were until I ran a half-marathon this weekend alongside Christy Turlington. Totally not kidding you guys. I ran the Hamptons Half-Marathon and maintained a two-stride distance from Mrs. Ed Burns for a solid two miles. While I look like Albert Einstein dying a thousand sweaty deaths when I workout, Christy Turlington looks...really pretty. Even supermodels sweat, but man, do they do it gracefully and in breathable fabric. While the rate at which my forehead shines isn't something I can change, I can buy nicer running clothes. I'm still operating in Nike shorts from 2001 and a J.Crew shirt of my mom's that she definitely had to order over the phone. It wasn't only Christy, but everyone else at the race, who was outfitted in elevated sportswear. I joked to my sister while waiting for the portapotties that given the state of my running apparel, no one would guess that I spend 95% of my disposable income on clothes.

I usually balk at the price of workout clothes, but if I'm going to run daily, I might as well do so in shirts not stained in toothpaste. Fully committed to the high ponytail-cool running girl cause, I went to the Nike store after work today. I was planning to buy these shorts and this sweatshirt but as I contemplated the total cost, visions of non-running outfits floated through my brain. I want a new striped shirt. And I still haven't given up my search for mom jeans. And what about new shoes?! Just when I think I'm satisfied with one pair of booties, another one walks through the door.

So I left Nike empty-handed. I can't. It's against my nature to spend money on workout clothes when I can just get them for free from my mom's dresser. 

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