Obligatory New Shoe Post

A couple of posts back I was surprised to find my running shoes were more than a year old. Last week, I hit up Moti on Whiteladies Road to upgrade my Mizuno Wave Inspire 8s to a Wave Inspire 9.

I also bought some new Mizuno running shoes. At City Sports in Cambridge I tried on all kinds of models, but ended up buying the same Mizunos I’ve been practicing in. They’re light, and the cushioning of the sole is a little hard. As always, they take a while to get used to. I like the fact that this brand of shoes doesn’t have any extra bells and whistles. This is just my personal preference, nothing more. Each person has his own likes. Once when I had a chance to talk with a sales rep from Mizuno, he admitted, “Our shoes are kind of plain and don’t stand out. We stand by our quality, but they aren’t that attractive.”

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, Haruki Murakami

I’d have agreed with that assessment up until I bought my new Wave Inspire 9s. They look like this:

20130427 IMG 0878

…which, frankly, stands out. But it was the only colour that Moti had in my size (I could have got the far more reserved white-and-red in a 9½, apparently) so I went for them anyway.

I did 5K down the towpath with them yesterday — having learned my lesson the hard way by hobbling back through Leigh Woods with a blister that time I got new shoes and went for a long run, first time out. So far, though, these shoes are pretty good, garishness notwithstanding, and certainly don’t seem likely to provoke any blisters.

It was quite a revelation to put the new shoes on in the shop and remember what new running shoes are like. They felt light, and cushioned, and I could feel the support — I have a tendency to overpronate, so I need a bit of stability from my shoe. The old shoes were so worn that all of that had disappeared, but shoes die so gradually that I’d not really noticed. The new shoes definitely add a bit of cheery “bounce” to yesterday’s run.

So, I think I’m going to put a reminder in my calendar for six months’ time to buy new shoes. It’s not like running, as a hobby, is exactly pricey. Even buying two pairs of shoes a year works out at less that £15/month, which is pretty good for a hobby (I don’t buy much extra gear; it’s probably £20/month in total tops, including clothing and water bottles and race entry fees.)

Oh — and if you’re into reading as well as running, Murakami’s What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is a good read. Recommended.

5 Miles

This morning I did a little work, then nipped out to run 8‑and-a-bit kilometres, mostly through Leigh Woods. I was particularly happy to have kept going all the way, including up the damn steep part where I normally rest at a picnic bench about halfway up to get my breath back for a while.

It was a lovely day for running, not too hot, but nice a clear and non-rainy, and it all went well. At the end of my run, I bumped into this little fella. Apparently a Red Devon cow. Mooooo!

Moooo!

Keeping Running

There’s very little I can say about the events at yesterday’s Boston Marathon finishing line. I can’t do much either, apart from to shudder at what it must have been like. And mostly avoid the news, as it’s now solidly locked into that frantic pedalling-in-thin-air it does when it quickly runs off the edge of the facts.

About the only thing I can do is keep running, so I made sure to get out today.

Avon

Back On the Road Again

Good news: I got back out for a little run last night. Even better news: mentally, at least, it was good. It wasn’t the struggle of the last two runs, so I reckon they may have felt bad just because I was going down with flu. It was just 4K down the Portway and back, and it rained on me on the way home, but it was generally fine.

The only thing letting it down was an ache from my lower back, on the left hand side. I’m pretty sure that the last time I felt this happening a lot, a pair of new shoes did the trick. Looking back, it was actually more than a year ago that I last bought new shoes. That definitely means I’m due some new ones, so they’re on the shopping list for the next time I’m heading past moti.

The other thing that would certainly help my back is, of course, the perennial need for me to lose some weight. Hopefully I can get back on track now I’m over my illness. We’ll see…

Hiatus

Attentive readers will have noticed that I said I was going to diet and exercise and do a thousand and one other good things before the Bristol 10K. Then I went out for a couple of rubbish runs and haven’t been heard from since.

This is due to the untimely arrival of the Dreaded Man-Flu chez Matt. Sadly, it’s not even been the conducive-to-weight-loss kind of flu where you don’t want to eat anything. So, basically, my weight-loss and jogging plans have had a fair bit of a dent kicked into them.

It feels like the illness is easing off, and we’ve even had some glimpses of Spring in Bristol over the last couple of days, so hopefully this will be the turning point. Then I’ve got some catch-up to play.

I’m really hoping that those last couple of rubbish runs were because my immune system was already fighting something off, leaving me with a bit less energy… I guess this week we’ll see, as I gradually recover and get out there for the next couple.