A Shoe Fetish

I think I have an issue with shoes, well to be exact running and cycling shoes. In my world I don’t really care about the fashion shoes, as long as I have a pair for work and some trainers for the weekend I am happy.

When it comes to sports shoes however, this is a whole different world and I don’t seem to ever own enough pairs. Currently I have just bought another pair of running shoes, Asics Kayano 19’s and these were added to my Saloman XA’s, Ascis Torans and Saucony Guides. I often find my self saying to my wife you only have one pair of feet so why so any pairs of shoes, now, I am getting it back, how many pairs can you run in at once?

My response is simple, specific shoes for specific activities, shoes for training in, some for racing in and off-road shoes, simple really.

The problem is running shoes are not my only fetish, cycling shoes are also something I own multiple pairs of, two pairs of road shoes and a pair of mountain bike shoes, again specific shoes for specific activities, so in my eyes not a problem!

There is one final issue though, because I generally wear the shoes out in terms of cushioning and support there isn’t actually much wrong with the body of the shoe, and this means that I have about half a dozen old pairs still kicking around the house, these do cause a problem as there isn’t room on the shoe shelf for them all! I think I may recycle some of the pairs and perhaps keep an odd pair for knocking around in, we will see.

I think I am normal for a runner/cyclist in having so many pairs of shoes, are others the same?

In The Foot Steps Of Mo

On Sunday I was one of the fortunate 12500 people who got a place in the National Lottery Run round the Olympic Park and finished in the Olympic Stadium in front of an estimate 20000 people.

The route took you round the park, and gave an opportunity to see the work they are doing to make it ready for next year, I hadn’t realised there was so much building work going on in there.

In total the route was 5 miles and was split into 4 waves, I was in the third wave, I have no idea how they decided upon the waves for reasons I will come to.

As with many mass participation runs these days there was a celebrity starter, this time Sir Chris Hoy. He had a few words for each wave and even took a picture of my wave which he tweeted, I can just about be made out in it if you look closely.

Once we were off I took the first kilometre steady, I had already said I wasn’t bothered about my time, and proceeded past the velodrome and of into the park. The volunteers offered much encouragement and the various steel bands playing on the course gave some more colour to the event.

As I went through the two mile point I noticed I was catching quite a lot of runners from the wave that started before me, and then at 3 miles I caught large groups of runners from the first wave, they started nearly 20 minutes before me. Now, as I said early I don’t know how they decided the waves, but I was certainly not on a fast run and to catch people who started almost 20 minutes ahead of me seemed a bit of a joke. Maybe it was done to ensure a flow of people into the stadium at the end, I don’t know but it did make for a bit of a crowded run from 3 to 4 miles.

The final section of the run took you into the back of the stadium, in the tunnels at the back and then finally onto the track with 300m to go. You could hearing the cheering crowd from outside the stadium as you approached, then in the tunnels it got loud, but when you actually hit the track the sound was incredible.

The run down the back straight gave me goose bumps, I actually slowed down to take it in and enjoy it. As I approached the 200m to go bend, I looked up into the crowd where my wife and lad were and throw the traditional metal horns. From then it was onto the home straight and I have to admit running down down the inside lane past the photographers, which for someone who hates having his photo taken is a bit odd!

Crossing the line and turning back to look at the crowd, gave me an idea of how cool it must have been for the real athletes when they were there in the packed stadium. I have to say this is one of those runs I will certainly remember for a long time, just for the crowd running round the stadium, incredible.

In terms of personal performance, my time was 44 minutes 10 seconds and I finished 4199 out of 12500, so I didn’t pull up any trees but that wasn’t the point, it was all about the experience.

Saucony Progrid Guide 6

I will start this review by saying I have been a long term fan of Saucony running shoes, I have had many pairs, including Omni Progrid 8,9,10’s and I also bought these shoes myself so this is my opinion based on spending my own money.

Tis review is also my initial review, as once I have used them more I will do another review.

These shoes are a lighter model than my previous Omni’s and that was the main reason for their purchase, I wanted a faster shoe.

The colour scheme are very much love or hate it seems, me I like the flash green, my boy thinks they are too bright! You have to make your own mind up.

The fit, is lie that of other Saucony shoes I have owned in that they are very comfortable, and this pair had the added bonus of me not having to play around with the lacing to get them comfy.

In use I have to say I really did notice how much lighter than my previous shoes they were, and this lightness did not mean less stability in fact I would say the stability was the same as the Omni’s. Having now done a straight run and a hill rep session in the shoes I can say that I am impressed, a fast(ish) light stability shoe.

As I said at the start this review is only my initial thoughts and once they have been used more I will write another review. But so far I would say I am impressed.