Saturday, April 4, 2009

When all else fails blame the shoes

After watching the ever-changing weather yesterday we made a decision to head to Central Park at the end of the workday. It was still a bit misty and somewhat cool as we walked to the park and it seemed to be great conditions for a run. Adventure Girl led the way taking us on the Bridal trail along the western side. With respect to the weather I wore a light but non-breathable windbreaker over a short sleeve jersey and a hat. That turned out to be a mistake because the weather cleared soon after we started and I began to overheat very quickly. I also wore my Nike Kutu trail runners because of the rainy conditions and it was a good idea to have trail shoes since the running surface was muddy and uneven. I never really liked the Kutus that much, I bought them too small and while they are okay for shorter runs they aren't so good overall. Consequently, I had a tough time almost from the beginning and AG was gracious to stick with me even though I was maintaining a glacier-like pace around 10:00 per mile.

She had joked about being concerned about keeping up with me before we ran. That was not an issue and I have many things I could blame (clothes, shoes, heat, time of day) for my slow pace. In my defense it was a hilly course and I'm just not used to a surface like that. The intended course was about 4.5 miles but I had to stop at 4.3 miles (ave 9:53/mi) with the last half mile on a paved surface. My legs were tired during most of the run but I wasn't winded. We walked back to the office and it felt good. I had a great time and I wish I was a better running partner but now I know what I need to do in terms of preparing next time.

This morning I decided to do a relatively easy run to assuage my damaged ego and did a 3-mile run through my neighborhood. I felt pretty good and the difference between the Nike Turbulence 13s and Kutus was evident. I ran slowly compared to recent street runs finishing with an overall pace of 9:10. We went out to do some errands and while my wife shopped with the kids for summer swim clothes I tried on some running shoes. The place we were at had some good brands but not the high end shoes. I decided to pass on buying any of the shoes I tried although they were inexpensive but at the last minute I saw some New Balance 460 trail shoes on sale so I tried them and really liked the way they fit. I'm going to run with them tomorrow to see if they feel good running. If that's the case I might keep them at the office. I'm thinking about buying some shoes to replace the Turbulence 13s which are rolling up to 400 miles. I don't know if that's necessary since they still feel pretty good.

Today Adventure Girl is conducting a training session with her relay team on the trails in Prospect Park. I'm not sure she even broke a sweat yesterday so I think she'll be fine for that rigorous activity. My wife ran 30 minutes today which is very impressive and I'm hoping that we can get to the track again soon. I'm targeting at least 4 miles tomorrow. It would be great if these new shoes feel as good on the street as they do in my den.

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