One bad habit I’ve had is buying a less expensive substitute for an item that I really want. I do this to try to save money, but then I am often disappointed with the purchase because it is of less quality or it isn’t what I really wanted.
I’ve posted about this before. Do you remember those ugly pink tri shorts? In that same post I mentioned the capri pants I bought from Target. I posted about those pants on 2/23/10. In short, I bought some subpar workout pants at Target because they were cheaper than the quality pants that I really wanted.
Even though I don't really like them I’ve been wearing them for more than a year now (while also keeping a look out for a replacement, preferably on sale). Last week I stopped by the local running store and decided to get a new pair to use for my half marathon this weekend. Ever since I bought a pair of compression tights for recovery I’ve considered buying a pair of running capris with compression. I run faster in the winter than I do in the summer and I think part of that is because I wear long running tights in the winter as opposed to shorts in the summer.
Specifically I’ve been checking out the CW-X Women's Stabilyx 3/4 Tights. According to the CW-X website:
The Stabilyx tights provide optimum targeted support to the core and knees. They're ideal for activities with lateral motion such as skiing and snowboarding and for athletes seeking our best form of knee support. The patented CW-X Support Web™ bands together the muscles and ligaments of the lower leg to stabilize the knee and reduce vibration for increased efficiency. The CW-X Support Web™ also harnesses the midsection, supporting the lower abdominals, hips and back to channel power through the core. Variable compression facilitates circulation during and after activity, minimizing lactic acid build-up so that you can be active longer and recover faster.
On a side note, I know there has been a lot of debate about whether or not compression helps during activity or in recovery. The literature is all over the place – some studies show it helps while others show it doesn’t make a bit of difference. Ultimately I think it is a personal preference. And if you think they make you run faster or recover better than they might (even if it is just a placebo effect) and that is good enough for me.
So back to the issue at hand. The problem with the CW-X tights? They are really expensive. The regular running capris are around $60 but these are $90! Ouch! I tried on both pairs, multiple times. I compared prices. I may or may not have searched for better deals online while standing the dressing room…
But then I remember that post I wrote last year. And I remember how disappointed I was with those cheap Target pants. So this time I did something a little strange. I bought the item I wanted. Even though it was more expensive. Even though I really didn’t need it. I opened my squeaky wallet and laid down my card and walked out with my fancy new pants.
The result? I love them. They make me happy every time I put them on. I’ve run in them a few times and I like the way they feel. I’m not sure if they make me that much faster though… We will have to wait and see if I can break 1:55 at the MORE half marathon on Sunday :)
Do you make these compromise purchases like me or do you go straight for the