2015 Running Book... and Beyond

I'm a little behind on my blogging. Just a tad.

I'm sure you all remember my inaugural 2014 running book, right? Well, I loved it so much, I decided to make another one for 2015! After all... I needed somewhere to put my 28 race bibs for the year. Ha ha...

I changed up the look significantly, giving it more of a concrete, road-race look. Except for the trail races... those got a "dirt" background. I added dimension, color and interest to each page by picking a fun color to accentuate the theme of the race (much like last year) and using a chevron shape overlaid onto the backgrounds. I was totally into chevrons last year... they look fast. Unlike myself.

2014 vs 2015
Dirt background

 I kept the same information on each page, since I love having a record of date, time, distance, and I  included the photos of the t-shirts again, although this time I gave it a less formal look by just tossing them on the ground to photograph them. I also added the various medals and trophies I picked up along the way...


I used Snapfish again to create my book. I've tried Shutterfly for books in the past, and I just don't care for their layout software, or the fact that they slap a big ol' bar code on the back of your book. Snapfish takes a more subtle approach and inserts an extra page at the back with their logo on it, then shrink wraps the book and puts any necessary bar codes and shipping info on the outside of the plastic wrapper. Much nicer.

Aaaaand, since we're already halfway through 2016, I might as well toss in the fact that I've started my book for this year too. I think it's my favorite design yet! It's loosely inspired by this sample catalog page I found (for industrial refrigerators?), which actually more closely resembles last year's book now that I look at them side by side.

I morphed the idea of colored diamond shapes against a dark background to get this:

I decided to go high-contrast with a really dark blacktop background and some pops of color to match the race colors, and turn everything at a 45 degree angle. I also just left space for one black and white feature photo, since I've found that it's rare that I'll have more than one from each race.

I am using one of my display mannequins (doesn't everyone have a collection of these? lol) to photograph the shirts. On that topic... why the heck do female mannequins have ridiculously perky nipples? It's just weird. I've been trying to smooth them away in Photoshop because it's distracting and it bugs me. Ha!

I was also inspired to add little maps of each run in the bottom left corner for more interest and color. The NIKE Run app apparently does this as a recap, and I thought it was really neat when I saw a friend and fellow blogger's post about her running experiences in Tokyo.

My running watch tracks all my runs via GPS and uploads them to Garmin Connect, so I just sign on and grab a screen shot of each race's map data and plop it into Photoshop. I then select the route with the magic wand tool and copy it over to my layout page. I change the color to match the page theme with the color overlay blending option, and voila! Cute little map. Not extremely useful, since there is no scale or anything, but I like the interest it adds to the page.

I've done a few new types of races this year already, including a Ragnar 200-mile relay and a sprint triathlon. These required a few more data points, since they're broken up into different legs, but I think this layout is super flexible and works really well. For the Ragnar page, I selected three different colors and assigned one to each of the legs of the race, so the distances and times correlate with the little line maps.

Now I just need to decide what to do for the bib pages. I think I'll keep it simple with the background being the accent color from the info page, and perhaps add some sort of 45 degree angle thing to tie them together.

Does anyone else do anything fun with their race memorabilia?


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