The investment has been made and I made some decisions about what footwear I’ll be running in next year. A big decision for me and my triple marathon efforts, and the training regimen that commences in the new year.
Here is my collection of running shoes that I used last year:
Those bright orange bad boys at the end are trail running shoes that I use for off roading. In the past year, my trail running has really been reduced to the stunning Coastal Trail that starts at Beach Cove in Sandbanks, Poole and extends for hundreds of miles. I often run from Sandbanks and work my way around to Swanage along the very hilly pathways, beach fronts and forest trails, including taking in the sights of Harry Rocks and taking in some amazing views.
Though lightweight, the Addidas shoes are very strong and have enough flexibility needed for uneven surfaces that are being run on, they also have brilliant grip, really brilliant – so much so that I used them for running in the snow along roads last winter.
Those nearest to us in the picture are Asics Gel Kayano, very sturdy and supportive and take a lot of training miles. I used them for my long training runs each week for most of the year.
Next to those are my Addidas Tempo 4 shoes that I race in. I’ll be mentioning these more later. Then I also used some further Asics and Saucony shoes last year from interval training and to add some more miles to the others – I have run three marathons this year and trained throughout all seasons without time off – all of these pairs have now seen more than enough miles to warrant finding their way to the bin or charity appeals.
So based upon the last couple of years of training, for the 16 weeks training leading up to next April’s first marathon in Brighton (and then for London and Milton Keynes marathons) I have selected to have two pairs of shoes. One that I will do all my interval training, midweek tempo runs and park runs in, and then another pair that I’ll use for my long runs and then race the marathons in.
They are the same brand and make, just different colours. Addidas Adizero Tempo 4. Here they are, box fresh:
I chose these because they are light enough to get some real pace and sense of speed, but strong enough to train in too. I weigh around 14 stone, so am not your typical runners build, and these shoes really can take the miles. I have a balanced foot landing, landing with the heel first and these shoes are perfect for that being reinforced enough at the heel.
My racing in the other pair of these that I had this year has gone brilliantly and I loved these.
I have two pairs each season to make sure that I have options should I need them on race day and to make sure they are broken in enough to use for the big races, but still fresh and bouncy enough to make sure they do not feel like wooden clogs are on my feet come the big days.
I got the orange ones rather than two sets of the white ones because I will be racing in an orange vest next year – nothing like having a modicum of colour coding, eh?
A couple of years ago, I used the Runners World shoe finder to track down shoes suitable for my training, if you are new to running, do go and track it down, it’ll help you make a wise choice of training and racing shoe that suits you. At the very least go and find a running shop that know about gait and form so that you can be advised on the best shoes for you.
I am really looking forward to breaking these new ones in come January and getting the final few miles out of this years collection as I complete this years training and get my final marathon of the year done later this month.
Many people ask me about barefoot running and about getting hyper-minimal shoes, such as the Vibram Five Fingers et al. I have not explored them greatly for a number of reasons. These past few years, I have had schedules that did not really permit for me to tinker too much and get my legs and feet used to such a dramatic change. Secondly, those that know of my hypnosis and hypnotherapy work know that I am very evidence based – the evidence for barefoot running is not really conclusive enough and all the evidence that favours the minimal running shoe does tend to be sponsored or paid for by those with vested interests. For a more in depth read about the science of barefoot running, do have a read of the very brilliant podcast by Brian Dunning, which I read systematically every day; back in 2009 he examined the evidence for the trend of barefoot running and here is the transcript of his findings: http://skeptoid.com/episodes/4185
Ok, so my shoes for next years challenge have been unveiled. Got some more preparations before we get going in earnest on this new blog, which I’ll be posting soon…