Marilyn Monroe once said “Give A Girl the Right Pair of Shoes and She’ll Conquer the World.”
I’m pretty sure she meant some amazingly beautiful high heels that were so sexy only SHE could walk in them. And she conquered the world in her way. I love beautiful shoes. Its one of my downfalls. Love them. Some gorgeous Jimmy Choos or Manolos or even a crazy sweet pair of riding boots. One of my favorite shoes of mine is my Steve Madden cowboy boots I wore all during Beachbody Summit in Nashville. When you put on a pair of shoes they transform you. They decide what you are going to be that day. Most days I live in my workout cross trainers. They are comfortable and stable and they make me feel strong and healthy and remind me of what I am. What I do. How I help people and keep my physical body fit and well. Putting them on my feet makes me know I am going to either dance or lift weights or do Isometrics or push ups or any and all of the above.
My old school Converse are very me. Laid back, casual, able to be worn with anything. And I am most me, most comfortable in a t-shirt and old jeans with my Converse. I know lunch with friends or running errands or shopping or going to the kids school functions or a drive with the husband or a football game or soccer game is in the cards.
Flip flops are more common in Colorado than you’d think. And mine are glittery- of course. And they remind me of Texas and hot weather and swimming pools and lakes and 4th of July and shorts and make me smile. I know I pay more attention to my pedicure during sandal season. Love my flip flops.
My cowboy boots are awesome. And beautiful. And rustic and weathered looking and black. And they make me feel good. They make me feel like I live in the country and they go with dresses and jeans and shorts and pretty much anything. And there is something strong and grand about a good pair of real cowboy boots. Something quiet and strong.
I never owned a pair of trail shoes, hiking shoes, Merrels, until I moved to Colorado just over two years ago. When we first moved here my husband decided we needed to “Colorado-fy” ourselves. We bought thick coats and real mittens and scarfs and crazy gear for cold weather I’d never seen before. We didn’t need that stuff much in Texas. One of the purchases was a pair of hiking shoes. Because he decided we were going to hike a lot. One of the reasons we moved to Colorado was to live more outdoors. We did not know how much time brain rot would allow for him to be physically active. And we were 100% in. Lets do this Colorado thing. All the way.
So I started researching hiking shoes and asking people and had done a few short hikes in my Nike Tennis Shoes enough to know that THAT was not going to cut it. I needed REAL hiking shoes. And I was clueless. Again….not many mountains in Dallas. I think I tried on a million pair. Until I found mine. These Merrels. These brown, ugly, old lady looking Merrels. They sure felt good and in this case form & function was way more important than looks. So we invested. I got the good hiking shoes. And for two years I have worn them WAY more, exponentially more than I ever dreamed I would. I had absolutely no idea how important hiking would become to me. How huge a part of my life it would become. What it would represent and lead to. I cannot count the number of hikes I’ve been on in two years.
I’ve hiked with my kids, with my husband, with dear friends, with strangers, and alone. And always…always….with my Merrels.. The one constant. Every hike is different. Some are for escape from reality. Some are for friend time and gossiping. Some are dates. Some are to listen to my kids TALK. Some are because I NEED to be outside. And maybe a few are for exercise. They all feed my soul. They’ve all been necessary. Some hikes are short and easy. Some are treacherous and scary. Some hurt. Some take me way longer than I expected. Some slap my ego down a few notches. Nature can be a bitch. I am no match for her. Just grateful she lets me play on her playground.
My shoes are two years old. I hiked Friday and one of the friends I was with said its a good idea to get new hiking shoes once a year if you hike often. I kind of got quiet and thought about that. Before my Pikes Peak hike I had thought about getting new shoes. But I didn’t want to worry about breaking them in and I KNEW my Merrels would get me through. I knew I could trust there’d be no blisters, no tired feet, no aching, and even when they are wet and muddy they still keep my feet dry and happy. So my Merrels took me up Pikes Peak. When my groin muscle pulled and screamed and my neck hurt so bad I cried and my shoulders were burning and my head hurt…..my feet kept going. My feet never hurt. My hiking shoes were rockstars.
I have some pretty cool shoes. Some pretty gorgeous heels and boots and I love getting dressed up so much you just don’t know. Thats become more rare since moving to the mountains. And in a million years I never thought that if this Texas girl was asked to pick her favorite pair of shoes it would be my damn ugly ass hiking shoes. But they are. The past two years have brought so many changes. New friendships, progressive disease, new jobs and opportunities, new schools, broken hearts, disappointment, joy, adventure and so much more. And every hike I take is the medication, the stress relief, the antidote to life. And all the shit. I cannot ever imagine again a life without hiking. And I need new shoes. I need new hiking shoes. Mine are worn out. And they’ve done there job. Very well. But I want to keep hiking and breathing and laughing and gossiping and making friends and seeing new trails….so I’ll get a new pair. But I’ll keep these forever. Who gets sentimental over shoes? Damn it. I guess I do. Especially when they are so much more than just shoes.