Everyone knows that runner with their medals and race bibs in a drawer or a box that they open every so often to look through. Sure, there are maybe worse ways to store them – I just can’t think of any. So let’s work on this scourge of the running world together: let’s end the horrors that legions of medals and race bibs face every day, and find those hard-earned medals and bibs a proper home.
I actually found myself completely frustrated by my husband, Steve’s, lack of display for his medals. I watch this man get up every morning at 5am and log his miles on his app (while I go back to sleep – I’m a night person), train harder and faster for every race he runs, and then stick his medal in a box in the closet when he’s done. He works so hard and yet, hardly ever sees the symbols of his accomplishments.
When he recently finished his first 13.1, after working up to it, training like a maniac, it was the final straw for me. Something had to be done. He had at least 25 or 30 medals, from local and virtual races, stuffed in a box from a long gone pair of running shoes, may they rest in peace after logging so many miles, and now the half marathon medal was going in there? After he trained for months? And completed something he could only have dreamed of when she started running?
Not on my watch.
I decided I’d get a custom Hooked on Medals Bib and Medal Display for him (I chose the [[insert name of whatever we have printed]]. But… there was a catch. I wasn’t just going to give it to him. I was going to hang it in our living room and get that old shoebox stuffed with medals and bibs and display them all when he was working late one night to surprise him – and show him how proud I am of all he’s achieved since he started running. And since the board is a nice size, it also lets him know I’ll be there to support his goals and future races (I’ve heard some murmurs of 26.2….)
So I did it. And thankfully, it was easy to hang and came with great directions.
And when he came home and saw it, he just stood there, and shook his head (in a good way), since he couldn’t believe how far he has come with his running (not shockingly, medals look much more impressive when they’re on a proper display) or even how many races he’s completed. The board has 30 hooks and can hold up to 180 medals, but his collection still looked impressive – and he has room to add more since he’s already entered a 5K later this month.
It was such a simple idea, I wish I had thought of it sooner.
I catch him sometimes looking at the board, or rearranging the medals. Sometimes, he thinks they should be in sequential order. Others, in order of his favorite races. Or the medals he likes best. I can’t even figure out what he’s doing with the bibs, but it’s fun to watch. And to think, just a few weeks ago, these prized possessions, displayed proudly in our living room (that have started quite a few conversations with our friends and other guests) were just sitting in a box in the closet. Now they’re on a large, finished, customized wooden board that is truly a piece of functional art.
If you know a runner like my husband, I can’t recommend doing something like this for them. Whether it’s a spouse, one of your kids, a sister or brother, parent, or best friend you’ve lived with for years, it’s a great surprise they’ll really enjoy.
And if you don’t? Treat yourself! After all, you earned it!
Safe and happy running to you all.