Showing posts with label Super Runner's Shop. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Super Runner's Shop. Show all posts

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Zoot suited - a shopping story

I was out after lunch yesterday in the mid-town heat so I stopped into City Sports to cool off a bit. Okay, it was very hot outside but I don't really need an excuse to stop into that store. What I like about City Sports is that, while they stock plenty of gear for other sports, they have a big running section that greets you right as you walk in. Since most of my athletic wear shopping takes place in the suburbs at Sports Authority, Dick's and Target (their Champion running stuff is a very good value for the price) or in private running stores that have less selection and (understandably) higher markups I appreciate the expanse and brand diversity at City. The only other place I've seen such choice is Paragon in Union Square but City Sports is just two blocks away!

My intention was not to buy anything during that visit. I really like looking at running gear and it's interesting to see brands like Sugoi and Craft displayed along with apparel from Mizuno, Brooks, Pearl Izumi plus the more common suppliers. One brand that caught my eye a few months ago is Zoot, a company that makes performance apparel primarily for triathletes. Hanging seductively in their section has been an Ultra Tech Tee that is so sheer that it almost doesn't exist. I imagined that this would be the perfect running shirt - light as a feather but with venting, sun protection and wicking capabilities. The only reason I never bought it was its sizable cost that I felt was just too high a price to pay for an item that is likely to be outweighed by a honey bee. As I looked at the racks I noticed signs indicating that a clearance sale was going on and I gravitated to the Zoot section only to see that this shirt was marked down quite a bit. Even so I hesitated to buy it, I probably have six or seven running shirts already and two, my Nike Sphere and Adidas adiZero shirts, are excellent for competition. I then thought about what my wife would say if she was standing there: "Go ahead, you've been looking for an excuse to get it. If it was me you'd say to buy it." So I did.

I'm glad I did. I remember reading a comment on my Runner's World blog from someone who said he buys a new shirt for every race. That sounds about right but I think I'm done for now. I invested in some good cold weather gear last year and now I'm fully equipped. Of course my Brooks running shoes are almost five months old so maybe its time to start thinking about their replacement...

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

The shoe debate has ended

Yesterday afternoon I stopped by the Super Runner's Shop in midtown which is located a block from my office. I mentioned that I bought the Brooks Adrenaline 9's the previous day and was unhappy to later discover that they were a stability model. The man at SRS asked to look at my foot, said I had a low arch and told me that I needed a shoe that managed pronation like the GTS-9 or the Asics 2140. All the same he said he'd be happy to take back the Brooks if I was unhappy with them. I discussed all this later with AG and she said I shouldn't get hung up on whether a shoe is neutral or made for stability. The important thing was fit. I decided that I'd go back today and try on more shoes.

A funny thing happened when I got home and started packing up the Brooks for return. I'd thought about what the salesperson said about pronation and I looked at my Nikes to see if I could find evidence of that. I was very surprised to see that the outside edges of both soles (at the back) were worn quite a bit. I compared the back view of the Nikes with the back of the Brooks and saw how the Brooks were built to counteract that wear. Instead of boxing up the Brooks I tried them on again and then tried the Nikes. The fit of the Brooks was actually much better and my only issue was the tightness at the tongue. AG had told me that sometimes changing the lacing helps the fit of a shoe and I noticed that, unlike the Brooks, the Nikes did not have laces in the top holes. I took the laces out of the top holes of the Brooks, re-tied them and decided that they felt good enough for me to give them another chance.

This morning I gave the Brooks a true test on the treadmill. I changed the battery on the Garmin foot pod last night and was happy to see the 50 was once again recording distance so that wasn't going to distract me like it did on Sunday. I started at a comfortable pace and increased speed as I went. The Brooks felt very good, no complaints. I ended up running a couple of miles at an 8:39 pace. I didn't really push my speed during the run, if I had I'm sure I could have taken down the pace by ten seconds/mile.

So after all that I've decided to keep the Brooks. I told my wife this morning and she smiled and shook her head but supported me completely. I think I drove her a little crazy over the last couple of days obsessing about this purchase. I want to take the GTS 9's on a long run outdoors to really understand how they fully perform. Right now my feet and my leg feel pretty good. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 9's, I'm sorry what I said about you before. You're more than okay.

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