This weekend, I added two things to my arsenal of “gear” to help me prepare for the Susan G. Komen 3 Day for the Cure. I think all walkers (and runners and cyclists and hikers and…) could benefit from the first one and I think all walkers that live in the Atlanta area could benefit from the second.
1) My new Road ID
Everyone that spends a significant amount of time outside should carry some form of ID on them at all times. That goes double for people who are often by themselves for their training and activities. While stuffing your driver’s license into your sports bra might serve the purpose, there’s actually a much better option that I highly recommend: a Road ID!
My new Road ID – it’s even pink!
The Road ID was conceived of by Edward Wimmer and his father when Edward was training for a marathon. After he was run off the road by a pick up truck while out running by himself sans ID, Edward realized how important ID really is. A few months later, Road ID was born. You can read more about their story here.
Road IDs come in a variety of styles, including wrist bands (like mine), ankle bands, shoe tags and dog tags. The IDs cost between $20 and $30 each and the stainless steel ID plate has a lifetime guarantee. The ID plate is laser engraved and can be customized with up to seven lines of text. This is what I chose to put on my Road ID (with some of the specific details smudged out for security reasons):
I chose to get the Original Road ID that you see in these pictures. There is also an option to get an “Interactive” Road ID. With the Interactive Road ID, all of your identification and medical information is stored online in a database. Because of this, you can include a lot more information in your database with the Interactive Road ID than with the Original Road ID for little to no extra cost. During checkout, you can also choose to donate a portion of the cost of your Road ID to one of six charities, including Susan G. Komen for the Cure. It’s a win-win situation!
I highly recommend that all 3 Day walkers invest in a Road ID. As they say on their website, it’s far better to have a Road ID and never need it then to be in a situation where you need an ID and don’t have one. Plus, it looks really cute tied on my pack during training walks or on my wrist when I’m running!
2) My annual pass to Stone Mountain
For those that don’t know, Stone Mountain Park is a 3200 acre park located about 20 minutes outside of Atlanta. At the heart of Stone Mountain Park is Stone Mountain, a giant hunk of exposed granite. Most people are familiar with the small artists village and theme park located at the base of the park. In addition to the theme park area (that requires extra tickets to enter), there’s a huge park with hiking trails and paved sidewalks winding around the base of Stone Mountain and the nearby lake that are very walker-friendly.
Because of the scenic views and generally peaceful atmosphere, Stone Mountain Park is a great place to train for the 3 Day. It’s also relatively safe. There are a number of 3 Day teams that hold training walks there on the weekends and there are always 3 Day walkers making their way around the mountain on nice days. While access to the trails and roads is free, you will have to pay for parking at Stone Mounting. Parking costs $10 for the entire day and there are parking lots scattered throughout the park. Because I like to do a lot of my middle to long distance training at Stone Mountain, I opted to get for the $35 annual parking pass instead, which I recommend for all Atlanta-area 3 Day walkers and runners.
My Stone Mountain map and parking pass
So now that I’ve got my parking pass and my Road ID, I’m ready for some longer, safer training walks. Bring it on!