I have been slammed with work lately, making it especially difficult to tear myself away from the computer in the morning after I’ve already sat down and started writing to get out and run.
That was the story on Monday morning, anyway. By the time I’d have been able to stuff my feet into sneakers and head out the door, I would only have snuck in about 3 miles. It’s not that 3 miles is nothing; it’s that ever since Sunday’s personal 10k (my longest run since the Philadelphia Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon and my injury), I simply want more, more, more!
Without too much thought, I decided to pack up my backpack and save my run for the evening — even if it would be dark outside by the time I got out of work.
The decision to test out my new Saucony Triumph 10’s was a no brainer on Monday evening. For one, I didn’t feel like shoving my dirty Brooks Ghosts into my backpack with my clean running clothes and midday apple; the Sauconys, on the other hand, were brand spankin’, crispy white, hadn’t-kissed-pavement-yet new.
And then there was the distance factor. When I run after work, it’s typically no longer than 4 miles or so — the perfect distance when testing out new sneakers if you want to break ’em in while at the same time avoiding blisters.
It’s funny, because if you had asked me to test out a new style — let alone a new brand — of running sneakers a mere five months ago, I’d have laughed in your face and called you crazy. Me? I’m a creature of habit; not some insane sneaker tester with insensitive feet. I could get injured fergodsake!
Of course, it actually took a running injury — mysteriously achey shins, to be exact — to burst my monotonous tendencies. After dealing with leg pain, and being unsure of how to fix it, I finally went to Manhattan’s beloved running hub, Jack Rabbit Sports, to be re-fitted for sneakers for the first time in six years, or since I initially started running.
Since trading in my Asics Kayanos (a stability shoe) for a pair of Brooks Ghosts (not quite neutral, but certainly not an aggressive stability shoe like my last ones), I’ve become increasingly curious about the impact that certain kinds of gear — from headbands to socks to sneakers and more — can have on the quality of one’s runs. For me, I’ve noticed a tremendous difference in a relatively short period of time, and getting the chance to test out another pair of sneakers — a neutral shoe at that — was an opportunity I just couldn’t pass up.
The Saucony Triumph 10’s don’t look all that different than my Ghosts.
From the moment I put them on, I have to admit that my feet felt right at home — a sensation I wasn’t expecting given my picky personality and generally skeptical outlook on most things in life.
The Triumph 10’s are light — much lighter than my Ghosts.
They were cushiony — much cushionier than my Ghosts (and appropriately so; Saucony copywriters have, after all, described Triumphs as “possibly the most plush ride ever”). Point taken.
And to top it all off, the neutral arch and support system was obvious — a factor that I thought would bother me, but I actually got used to quite quickly. Maybe it was the fact that I had nutrients in me before heading out there, or maybe it was the flawless city air, but on Monday night, in the new Triumph 10’s, I actually felt as though I were running on air.
Noah came with me on Monday night. We ran along the Hudson, giving us time to catch up on the day and our weekends (he was in Michigan…
…I stayed in New York to pick pumpkins).
We maintained a decent, swift pace from start to finish. The west side was calm, the streets were alive, and above all, the temperature was unseasonably warm. I know I’m supposed to be weary of global warming, but as an outdoor runner living in New York City, I was having a hard time hating one of the biggest travesties to afflict Mother Earth on such a deliciously mild fall evening.
By the time I got back to my apartment and kicked off my new sneakers, I was already excited to put them back on and go for my next run.
(Put me in coach!)
Perhaps this is something I can toy with — the idea of change, or whatever. Because after so many years of ignoring what my body was telling me because I was afraid of change, all of a sudden, I’ve begun to embrace the fact that we runners have options. Just as I may choose to run at night here and there instead of the morning, or the Hudson River instead of Central Park, there are myriad other elements that I can — and should — welcome with both apprehension and wide open arms. I guess you have to start somewhere.
- Do you run in the same sneakers all the time, or do you switch off?
- Have you ever worn Sauconys before? What do you think?
- Neutral or stability? What are the main differences you see?