I know better.

So a few days ago on my lunch break, I packed up my clothes and my shoes, and headed out for a run with a friend before I had to take off to teach a Zumba® Fitness class.  The weather is starting to get gorgeous here – yesterday, the temp must not have gotten over 80 degrees, and for the first time maybe since the summer kicked off, I didn’t feel like death following the run.

But I made a critical error.

I know so so much better than this, but I grabbed an old pair of Glycerin 11s, a pair from last October (almost a year ago), and did a short run in them.  My feet hurt.  My knees ached.  And as an employee at a running speciality store, I knew SO much better.  I know old shoes can make the difference between a good and uncomfortable run.  I know that they contribute to foot cramping and knee aches.  I know that looking at gross worn-out shoes is probably not helping me to pull out of this running slump whatsoever.

But I did it anyways, and only rethought it when, after only three miles, my feet were aching, knees aching, and when a co-worker from Fleet Feet walked in, took one look at my flattened out shoes, and started laughing.  We can tell these things.

So today, reflecting on my slump and how discouraging my achy breaky run was, I went to the store, picked up a pair of Glycerin 12s, and went for a little under 6 miles with a friend.

GlycerinThey felt really really great, and the just-under-six really didn’t feel as slumpy as all my runs have been in a while.  A few contributing factors to that?  Pretty new shoes, decent fall weather, a good friend to chat with while we powered through the gnarly gnarly hills of Raleigh.

Oh, and I registered for a half at the end of next month.  I’m sure that didn’t hurt my motivation since now I have to show up and kick some ass.

What do you do that you know is no good for you?  

 

40 mangos later.

Fun fact: the plural of mango is either mangoes or mangos.  This makes me very uncomfortable, and I’m really not sure how to approach this.  Advice is welcome on how to reconcile this battle within myself.

Moving right along.

So, happy Saturday. I’m obsessed with you and I kinda hope you’re pretty obsessed with me too.

So, Friday after work, I sprinted over to the Raleigh Convention Center to work the Rock ‘n’ Roll Convention, and as a little preview to the race, I made sure to snap a few pics so that you all could share in the experience.

DSC_0219I pulled up into the expo lot and started getting excited (and very itchy from that yellow pollen) for all of this.  There is something so special about a good expo that makes your stomach do these amazing flips when you think about a race.

DSC_0221Hello!  Jambo!

Jambo

DSC_0222

Also the camera Sharon, my MIL got me is incredible BYE.

DSC_0223I worked the Gu booth with some really fun partners 🙂

DSC_0226The Brooks “booth” which I’m working tomorrow, is a small city.

DSC_0228Literally not kidding.  It’s a planet.

It has been so fun.  I am working the expo tomorrow as well, and really excited to work and run this race.  I also ran into Benjamin and Juan, the two boys from ESPN walking around the expo, and they said that I was gonna be really really happy with the footage.

After the expo, I ran over to Whole Foods, where Mexican Champagne Mangos were 69 cents each, so I stocked up on about 40. Don’t judge me, you’re being rude if you’re judging me right now, and I’m not interested in hearing it.

photo 1There were actually more mangos…

photo 2So I dehydrated some, I cut some up for smoothies, and made some mango baby food (mango sauce, sorta like applesauce but with mangos) with the help of my little sister, who’s pretty dank as a chef.  If you like the idea of mango sauce, shoot me an email, and maybe if you’re lucky, I’ll post you a recipe.

DSC_0229Austin got me these mason jars, which I sorta guess I need for our wedding anyways, so it worked out for my mango baby Cheri food.

How was your Friday? 

Shoe review – The Brooks Transcend (DIS FOR ALL MY SHOE NERDS!)

So, before you read, 100% understand that I have been team Brooks for millions of years.  And by millions, I mean for about 2 years, which is as long as I have been working for Fleet Feet in some capacity.  Originally, I was fitted for the Brooks Adrenaline, which is pretty decent stability, but my “princess and the pea” hoof was not having that stability posting.  From there I tried the Glycerin 10 which is what I ran my first half marathon and my first marathon in, and moved to the Ghost for my shorter runs.  My poor rugby knee seemed to really really appreciate the cushioning.

Knee InjuryOuch!

Okay so anyhoo, I actually called our Brooks Rep up on the phone, Chris, and had a really good chat with him about the Transcend, because honestly, I’m not sure I was getting the concept.

The Trance, which the Transcend replaced, was a pretty high stability shoe – felt like a dang dream on your foot, but had a really decent amount of stability in the shoe, so we “prescribed” the show sparingly.  Additionally, the steep price point would sometimes scare folks off who were, at the time, expecting to pay maybe $100.  (The shoe’s price soared to $150, and this was before that was pretty standard for a pair of high-cushioned stability shoes).

So anyhoo, Chris had great insight and great explanation for the way the shoe differed.

The shoe is still considered stability, but instead of there being a huge stability posting that your poor pronating foot slams into with each step, the shoe relies on “guide rail” technology that works to gently guide your foot into a more neutral position.  Still following?  The other big draw of the shoe is the cushioning, that Chris repeatedly described as “plush” but it’s referred to by Brooks as Super DNA, which is their original DNA cushioning, really beefed (or in this case), fluffed up.  Whereas the Glycerin or the Ghost felt a little more firm, a little more stable, the Transcend, out of the box feels straight up smooshy for lack of a better word.

Can you tell that I love my sneaks and that I love my job at Fleet Feet?

Okay, onto the review!DSC_0020

Cons (which I always start with so you can end on a positive)

  • I wear a size 10.5 in women’s which is already pretty big.  I felt like the Transcend made my hooves look HUGE.  You’ve got a skinny little chick in tights wearing giant pink shoes – not the most attractive.  In fact, I felt a little goofy.
  • Being used to the snug, foot-hugging Cadillac feel of the Glycerin, the shoe felt huge at first as well.  It took me so definite getting used to.
  • I’m used to the boat shape of the Brooks Glycerin and the Ghost.  The sort of flatter shape of this shoe reminded me of the Brooks Dyad, and threw me off a little at first.

But, after an initial test-drive….

Pros

  • Out of the box, the shoe is obviously a well-engineered, quality-manufactured running accessory.  I don’t need to name names, but sometimes that is not necessarily the case.
  • I got a lot of compliments on the look of the shoe – maybe I was being a little overdramatic on how big they looked on me?
  • My feet usually cannot stand to have any stability within their vicinity.  The Guide Rail technology was very very comfortable to me, and seemed to really do some guiding.  I’m interested to see what my wear pattern might look like after a few hundred miles.
  • Need cushioning?  Bad knee, sore hip?  This is the shoe for you.  You feel virtually nothing as you’re cruising, and that’s so weird, but so cool.
  • The forefoot of the shoe kinda felt like the Ghost used to.  As in, there was a ton of room up there.  In a good way, not in a weird way.
  • The shoe is very smooshy.  I’m trying to think of something to compare it to in real life, but it’s sort of like running on….sorta of like a firmer marshmallow.  A regs marshmallow would be really weird, it has more structure than that.

Overall, I liked the shoe, and I’m glad that working at the store, I was given first dibs on a pair of these shoes.  Had I not been so intrigued and wanted to try them, I may have just stuck in my old habits.  I’m interested to race in them and kind of see what we think in a race situation.

Anyone else tried this shoe?  What do you think?  

[Full disclosure – FF Ral was seeded a few pairs, and I was a lucky FIT Specialist who got a pair.  But all opinions are strictly my own!]

Y’all…

I’m in DC for the Rock ‘n’ Roll USA, and I’m having the most amazing time ever.  I cannot wait to tell you all about it!!! Stay tuned beautiful runners!