Saturday, October 03, 2009

Back to basic pair of running shoes?

In my years of running, I've settled into a pattern of finding the shoe that gives me comfort, and sticking to them. So while I've never really gone away from the Asics brand, I've usually purchased the GT 2100 series (now at GT 2140) in no large part because they're popular but they also do quite well for my feet.

In the past year, I've tried more neutral running shoes as the GT series tend to give you a lot of support. I found going back and forth between neutral and motion control very noticeable. Some times I'm not sure which shoes is best.

When I first started getting into serious running, one of the shoes I tried was the Asics 1100s, a step down in the price category from the GT series. I last used them in the winter of 2005/2006.

Also in those years, I've gotten into long distance running. Doing 55 to 70 mile weeks puts a lot of stress on you, but it's not much mileage compared with those mega mileage runners who pound out 100 a week.

(Don't worry, this is going somewhere.)

Like a lot of runners, I'm in the middle of the new book Born to Run by Christopher McDougall. It's quite the book that mixes in profiles of personalities, a fascinating portrait of the Mexican Tarahumara tribe of natural-born runners and a study in ultra running. I won't give anything away by saying that Christopher advances the notion that we're "born to run" and not only that, that the modern shoe is a bane to our natural stride and running form.

While listening to the audio book during my runs, I've listened to my form a lot and I do notice that I have lots to work on. I need to feel the road, and to lightly hit the ground while gaining speed and turnover.

Anyways, the other day, I bought a pair of 1140s, and today took them for a test ride. Funny, I had the feel of a new running shoe but with the little less cushioning and the 'lower riding' feel of these shoes, I felt a more natural runner. My friend Lee, who also uses 1100s, confirmed this to me on Twitter, saying he found the GT 2100s too "restrictive" and they messed with mechanics.

Gonna try these shoes on my long run tomorrow. They felt great today but a long run will test that.


Marlene said...

I wish I could get away with less show. My motion control clunkers are the only way I can keep running with my flat feet and severe pronation.

Enjoy the new kicks!

Anonymous said...

I'll be so curious to hear how you like the more minimal shoes. I just finished born to run and also just finished the TC marathon - I'm going to work on switching to more basic shoes now too...

By the way, I enjoy your blog! Thanks.