“Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room”
Now in my seventh month of pregnancy, I’ve spent quite a bit of time on, what I believe is the single biggest necessary stressor of any mom-to-be: the baby registry. No joke, the baby registry has taken up more of my time and given me more panicked feelings than anything else.
First-time parents, you feel me, right? There’s just so much to choose from, so much you need (or maybe don’t need), and about a million different factors that affect why you might want the Dr. Brown’s bottles vs. the Phillips Avent brand.
I started thinking about how this is really similar to running stuff and workout gear in general. Especially this time of year with so many first-timers looking to set themselves up for success in the gym, it must be overwhelming. I realized baby gear and workout gear have these five things in common.
1. There’s So Much – Good Stuff
Let’s face it, even though you don’t need every workout product on the market, you need a decent amount of workout stuff to succeed in your fitness goals. But it’s tough because there are so many options, from quality shoes and athletic clothing to a music player, and good food – and that’s just the start of the necessities.
Babies need plenty of the basics to survive – and, similar to the choices we have in running shoes, clothing brands, and headphones, I’ve discovered there’s no shortage of cribs, diapers, and baby shampoo I have to choose from.
2. There’s So Much – Shit
Just as there are a lot of options of good workout gear, there’s a ton out there that’s totally unnecessary. Does the casual runner need compression socks? Does the weightroom beginner need gloves? And let’s not even start on pre-workouts, recovery foods, and general supplements. There’s so much of it that you just don’t need.
As I’ve been reviewing baby gear and chipping away at my registry checklist, I’ve determined there’s a lot of stuff out there that no parent or baby really needs. Guess I’ll soon find out…
3. You Need Recommendations
Raise your hand if you’ve ever crowdsourced advice on a new Garmin or pair of wireless headphones? It’s very common for fit folks to seek out info and recommendations on every type of gear prior to purchase.
With about 300 models of car seats, dozens of varieties of bottles, and more styles of pacifiers than should be legal, parents need help sorting through it all. Reviews and recommendations have been a saving grace for me. At least, it makes me feel like I’m making informed decisions.
4. Everyone is Different
What works for you might not work for me and vice versa. I love my Asics stability running shoes but if you have really flat feet, they’re not going to be good for you. Recommendations and research help but a certain degree of trial and error is really the only way to find out what’s best for you.
Because every baby is so different, there’s no way to know what’s going to work for all. I’ve registered for different brands of the same type of item and borrowed a few things from girlfriends to give Baby P options in case he or she hates something that’s universally loved by other babies.
5. You Get What You Pay For…Sometimes
I’ve shelled out big bucks for running shoes over the year. And for the amount of miles I put in, it’s totally worth it. I’ve also purchased some of the simplest, reasonably-priced clothing that has lasted through years of workouts, sweat, and washings. In summary, I’ve found that some workout splurges are justified while others aren’t needed.
I have yet to find out how this correlates to baby gear. Based on reviews I’ve read for things like car seats, cribs, and baby monitors, you definitely don’t want to go the cheapest route – but generic diapers and wipes, and even items that aren’t marketed as baby goods do the job well and can save a ton of money.
Wish me luck as I navigate building an arsenal of supplies before Baby P’s arrival. If you have any solid advice for a first-timer, please leave a comment or tweet me, @LindsayIRL.