Sometimes a girl just needs a new pair of shoes. Abigail is a freshman runner for one of the top-ranked high school teams in New Hampshire. She usually places among the top 12 on her team, but lately she’s been frustrated with her performance.

Brooks Launch 2 Women

In practice, she’s keeping up with everyone just fine. But, on race day things seem to fall apart. She’s learned a lot of lessons the hard way this year as all freshman do. What she needs now is some serious running mojo to boost her self-confidence.

Racing hurts, and unless there’s a lion chasing you, it’s hard to make yourself enter the pain cave voluntarily. Choosing between pushing forward and giving in, is the defining moment of a runner’s life. All it takes is one breakthrough race to discover that pain is temporary and glory is everlasting. Keep grinding.

Brooks Launch 2 Women

A couple of weeks ago, I gave my daughter a new pair of running shoes. She was thrilled! She gushed about how great they looked and how good they felt on her feet. And then, as she sat there on a bar stool in our kitchen with new shoes on her feet, I shared a secret. I told her that she’d probably run 15 seconds faster per mile in those shoes. She looked me straight in the eye with the skepticism of a 14-year-old girl and then… she smiled. Hallelujah!

She’s worn her new shoes every day and her running times have been getting faster and faster. Yesterday, after some intense lobbying on my part, she even agreed to let me run with her.  We covered six miles together and chatted like we used to when she was younger and I was cooler.

Brooks Launch 2 Women

Pictured above: Women’s Brooks Launch 2 and Brooks Streaker Capri

Her next cross-country meet is this Tuesday. She’ll be wearing her magic running shoes for the first time and I’m expecting good things. Self-confidence is such an important part of being a runner, and a teenager. Sometimes all it takes is a new pair of shoes to find your mojo.

You can read my running shoe review of the Brooks Launch 2 here.

Thoughts?